I was born in Italy and raised in Spain. I spent most of my childhood in Europe. My dad was in the military and stationed overseas in Seville, Spain where he met my mother who attended college there and they quickly fell in love. Funny thing is that neither of them spoke the other’s language. I came shortly after. I first learned to speak a medley of Spanish, English and Italian mixed with a bunch of made up words invented along the way to better communicate with one another. Needless to say I spent a lot of time day dreaming in school with my imaginary friends as I didn’t know how to quite communicate with others. That’s when I was placed in Special Ed for reading and English. I loved this class! I didn’t feel like an outsider. My teacher was super cool too! She was blind? Everything I read she had her own version in braille. And she could work a Rubik’s Cube like no one else! I was constantly bringing mine in for her to reset. She taught me that there were many different forms of expression and communication if you weren’t blind to them. As long as I can remember, music was always my favorite form of communication. I would get lost in all of the sounds and melodies even if I didn’t quite understand everything that was being sung. This was probably a good thing as some of my first music influences consisted of Madonna, Samantha Fox, Ready for the World, Bon Jovi, Michael and Janet. “Like A Virgin”, “Naughty Girls Need Love Too”, “Oh Shiela” and “Nasty” probably weren’t the best tracks for me to listen to at such an early age but I really had no clue as to the content so it was all good. I was still day dreaming in puppy dogs and kittens at that age anyway. In elementary I remember having a creative writing assignment where I wrote a parody to “Let’s Hear It for the Boy” by Deniece Williams off the Footloose soundtrack. Kevin Bacon rocks! My teacher loved it so much she featured it in the school newspaper and asked me to write a few others that were later featured as well. I started being noticed by my classmates and felt I was beginning to fit in.
During our time in Europe, my family also did a couple of short stints in California and D.C., where my brother joined the Vinatieri clan. I remember being on a family road trip in our supped up, carpeted van dying of boredom when inspiration struck and I wrote my first original song and melody. I then had the genius idea to teach my little brother and we then applied the “99 Bottles of Beer on the Wall” concept of singing to this and drove my parents crazy:
Going down the hill
Having lots of fun
In our little camper
With my mom and dad
Got my little brother
And my doggy too
Riding though the middle of the red, white and blue…Yahoo!
Hey…it may not be a top 40 hit but it’s a start. And this was the beginning of my love affair with song writing. I’ve been doing it ever since. I feel there’s no better compliment then when I hear someone singing or humming one of my songs. It makes me feel like they were able to connect with my message. It’s like we’re in some secret club together! LOL! Throughout the years friends and family would encourage me to enter various contest and talent shows. I would often sign up but could never actually work up the courage to see it through due to a nasty case of stage fright! Until one day a friend gave me no choice. We’d move here to Colorado when I was 16 and my best friend at the time asked if I would sit in on a presentation she was doing for her English class as she was nervous and wanted me there for moral support. Little did I know this was a set up and so of course I went. She was giving an oral book report but was tasked with creating what was called an “attention-getter” prior to the actual report in an effort to engage the rest of the class into listening. I listened intently as began her spiel. “For my attention-getter I am going to ask my best friend Jen to come up and join me in singing one of her original songs.” I’m pretty sure I had an official “deer in the headlights” look of shock on my face. I froze and it took the whole class what seemed hours to coax me into getting up there but I finally did. We started a little shaky as my nerves were all over the place. The song was one we’d rehearsed a million times called “Never”. We even had a little rap in the middle. Some of the class mates started drumming on their desks and beat boxing along. When we finished we received a standing ovation. What a rush! Years later when attending college one of the students from that class came running up to me saying, “You’re that girl who wrote that song in high school.” Then he started signing the hook. I couldn’t believe he remembered it!
While in college, my best friend and I decided to go to a studio at the local mall to record a few of my songs acapella. When we came out of the booth the manager asked if they were originals and if he could play them over the speakers at the mall. Wow! With that word started getting around that I could write and I was approached by a local band to help them in writing and producing some songs. This was a Rock/Alternative band. They performed a series of songs throughout local venues and had quite a following. I never performed with them I was content being behind the scenes as a writer. Until I presented them with a song I wrote called Religion which they felt didn’t quite fit their image. However, they loved it so much that they created music for it and persuaded me to sing and record it with my vocals. They later hosted a garage band party in which they used the similar surprise tactic and put me on the spot to sing it live. Due to the response it received from the crowd that day, unbeknownst to me, they decided to shop it around and then I heard it playing at one of the local dance clubs! I watched in disbelief as the crowd danced to my song. This is awesome! Shortly after the band broke up and went their separate ways so that experience was short lived.
I was then introduced to a Rap group who needed content for an upcoming CD in which I wrote hooks for. Upon its release, there was a review of the CD in which featured positive feedback of my singing and writing. We decided to put one more CD out afterwards but it never really went anywhere. I didn’t realize it had a local following until I was out for Ladies Night in Denver years later and I saw a guy at the bar wearing a tee shirt with the Rap group’s logo on it. Out of curiosity I struck up a conversation with him and asked about the group. He was a fan! He knew quite a bit about the whole group but nothing about the girl who sang the hooks. She was a mystery. He told me his favorite song of theirs and I began singing the hook. I will never forget his reaction. He gave me a hug and told me not to give up on my dream!
That’s when I decided to take things into my own hands. Secretly I worked on recording my own songs until I finally had enough for a CD. I wanted to produce a collection that would showcase my songwriting. These are only a few of the songs in my arsenal so please don’t lump me into any specific genre. My dream is to write and produce for others in helping them achieve their star potential. To date, I have been fortunately enough to be gaining recognition a diverse fan base and global air play. It is never too late to follow your dreams, your calling.
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