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Five Miles Up with ... Chris Rene

Y! Travel shares an armrest for a chat about collecting seashells, hunting raccoons, and visiting Rio
By Bekah Wright | Yahoo! Travel – Tue, Oct 2, 2012 2:49 PM EDT

As a finalist on the first season of FOX’s X Factor, performer Chris Rene stole hearts with "Young Homie," his self-penned rap about overcoming addiction. Today, Rene’s first album makes its debut – "I’m Right Here" (Epic). And, after a whirlwind year of fame, where does the musician want to celebrate? Why Disneyland, of course.

Do you check in your luggage or carry on?
I always carry on, because it sucks when they lose your bag. Remember "Meet The Parents" with Ben Stiller…

Window or aisle?
Window. I like to look at the frosty mountain peaks.

Do you bring food with you on plane? If so, what do you typically pack?

What’s your idea of the perfect vacation?
Sensitive seashell collecting.

Tell us about a vacation you’ve taken that’s come close thus far.
I lived on a beach on Maui with some locals, and we hunted raccoons to survive.

What's the most unusual souvenir you ever came back with?
A dragon-head mask I picked up on my travels because I thought it was cool.

The thing you’re most willing to splurge on?
I like taking my two sons to theme parks and splurging on them with clothes and toys. That brings me all the joy in the world.

Any places you’d like to take your sons to?
I’m looking forward to taking my kids to Disneyland (Anaheim, Calif.), Disney World (Orlando, Fla.) and Universal Studios.

Ever try a food that you wished you hadn't?
Not yet…

What's your favorite hotel or resort you've ever stayed in?
Any Ritz-Carlton on the planet.

Biggest regret you've ever had while on vacation?
Don’t have any.

Three artists on your travel playlist?
Sade, Led Zeppelin, and Al Green.

Where would you take someone visiting your hometown for the first time so they could see what you love about it so much?
The East Side of Santa Cruz (Calif.), for the beautiful scenery. Especially, Sunny Cove, where the cliff is shaped like an E.

You only get one more trip in your lifetime. Where will it be?
Even though it was a cartoon, seeing (the animated film) "Rio" made me want to visit Rio de Janeiro. The birds, the scenery – it was all awesome.