She is fast rising in the pop music world and comes from little Endicott, N.Y. Dena has all the qualities to make that fast track up the charts and into the public eyes and hearts let alone radio and media. Stunningly beautiful, the voice of an angel, and the vision to make it all reality. Dena dominated the competitive dance, gymnastics and cheerleading circuits, in addition to serious vocal training for musical theatre and the stage. She was a find on Reverbnation one day a week or so ago as I browsed local talents and she had recently played a show up on the Syracuse University campus at DJ's on the Hill.
As I looked deeper into who she was and sent her a message to ask her more, I found a young woman that is talented yes, but very humble and grounded yet driven at the same time. Aces, as they say.
She had a meeting with producer/manager, Jeff DaBella, which opened the door for a successful working relationship and new career direction. In December of 2011 DENA signed to ECP Productions, headed by Earl Cohen, and featuring a team of the same producers and writers behind the launch of Lady Gaga's Platinum-selling "Fame" album. She is currently writing and recording with Grammy award-winning engineer/producer Earl Cohen (Lady Gaga, Jessica Simpson, Pink, Nelly), Grammy award-winning songwriter/ producer Calvin Gaines (Lady Gaga, Whitney Houston, Destiny's Child), songwriter/ producer Tom Kafafian (Lady Gaga), producer/engineer Kevin Kumetz, producer/songwriter Chris Paultre (Lupe Fiasco), and David "Pic" Conley (O-Town, Olivia). She is with Sono Recording Group.
With so many things on the upswing she was refreshing in that she communicated with me directly versus dealing with a PR person or agent, thus her very grounded and appreciative personality shined through in our communications and she was more than willing to answer some questions. Go check her out as she will be on the world stage soon in this writers opinion.
Interview with Dena
Thank you for taking the time here, you just recently caught my attention so being from Syracuse, how did we miss you here?
Thank you for having me! Haha, I'm actually from Endicott, NY, so maybe that's why you missed me! Very excited to meet you though!
Can you give me a little background on where you are from; school, college, local performances?
Well, like I said, I grew up in Endicott, NY. I went to Union Endicott High School and ended up at Broome Community College after that for one semester until I decided to do music full time. I've performed all over locally/regionally. Beginning at an early age, starting out with dance and Community Theater and then ending up as a recording artist, which was always my goal. However, more specifically, the most frequent places I performed at was Tioga Downs Casino and Thirsty's Tavern. As far as Syracuse goes, I just played a show at DJ's On The Hill located on the SU campus. Syracuse is great, so I am looking forward to coming back for more!
I am surprised as the Syracuse Area Music Awards season is upon us, have you ever thought about or have you submitted your work to them?
I actually have not heard about the Syracuse Area Music Awards, but it sounds like an awesome event! Since I am not from there, I suppose I am not eligible to enter.
**Author note** I asked her this assuming she was from Syracuse, so her answer is dead-on although that is also a shame in my own humble opinion.
You have been working with some impressive names in writers and producers who have worked with some of the biggest names in the world such as Lady Gaga, Pink, and Whitney Huston. Can you talk about that and how do they affect or change what you have been doing?
I have been so blessed to work with some of the greatest writers and producers in the business. I've learned so much from them, soaking it all up like a sponge. In turn, I've grown ten-fold as an artist and my music has evolved into something I always dreamed of. Unique and true to who I am.
You have an incredible voice, style, and look and it shows on your video for “Shot In The Dark,” do you have any more planned or out that we should know about?
I am not entirely sure what the next single is going to be yet, but once that is decided upon, I guarantee another video will follow. I'm super pumped about that.
How would you describe your sound and music? I see pop, rock, dance, so in your own words.
Thank you so much! Simply put, my music is definitely based in pop, but I love to dance and there is also an underlying rock edge that I feel needs to be expressed. All my songs are a combination of fun, passion, with a little darkness on the side. Some of my musical influences range anywhere from Led Zeppelin to Paramore to Britney Spears and Garbage. So when you mesh all of that together, essentially you get... me! haha!
Your album “The One” released back on October 29th, how has it been going and have you been out there performing?
It's all been so exciting! "The One" was released in 38 countries and since then I've had tons of promo, especially with the video. I've most recently been playing in dance clubs, networking and meeting lots of new amazing people in the business.
What is next for you as the year progresses?
Definitely touring! Beginning in spring/summer time. I'll be getting into rehearsals for that soon and I seriously can't wait.
Finally, what would you like to say to your fans and all of the readers that may be learning about you for the first time now?
I am so grateful for all my fans. Thank you, thank you, thank you to everyone who took time out of their busy lives to read this! You rock!
Wed Feb 19
Billy Joe's Ribworks
Newburgh, NY | 6:30PM
Tue Feb 25
East Village, NY | 8:00PM
Thu Feb 27
West Point Cadets Club Show
West Point, NY | 8:00PM
Fri Mar 14
Hat City Kitchen
Orange, NJ | 8:00PM