Daena Jay
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Daena Jay

Los Angeles, California, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2012 | INDIE

Los Angeles, California, United States | INDIE
Established on Jan, 2012
Solo Alternative Singer/Songwriter


This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos




Some of you may remember the “Pure Mood” series of albums released about seventeen years ago that featured examples of songs and styles from around the planet. Though usually rooted in a New Age sound, all the music had the awesome effect of being able to connect with the listener on a global plane. The sings from Daena Jay’s “Subdivision” album would have been comfortable on any one of those collections.

From the first notes of the first song ‘I Will’, you are sucked into the world of Enigma and Adiemus, the instrumental waves bringing a sense of calm understanding; the listener doesn’t know what is coming next, but is already involved in where it is all going. The music connects with us that quickly. There is an infectious undertone of appreciation in these tracks that never misses its mark. You want to be won over by the five songs on this album and, luckily, it effortlessly does just that. They offer not the sounds of one woman’s endeavor, but those of everything in the world around us. She is as much of the music as it is of her.

Hands down, Daena Jay is an “old soul” and she echoes that in her progressive shades of music. Her traditional-sounding compositions challenge the sounds of the status quo and have an undeniable flow of forward movement. “Subdivision” is traditional and evolutionary. Both lyrically and musically, her earthy invigoration and empowerment both challenge and satisfy the expectations of herself and the listener; this is a work of art. Every note and whisper comes together perfectly to knit a spectrum of emotional facets. Jay flips from loss to empowerment to frustration without missing a single beat. Each moment on this disc is as essential as those before and after it. This isn’t an album of concepts, it’s purely an album of moods.

Her ability to play the strings that tie every person together gives “Subdivision” a universal appeal. Maybe she is a fan of the circle of life idea from “The Lion King”. Maybe she is just a great musician in touch with her own talent. Maybe it’s both. If a subdivision is the small piece of a greater whole, then Jay’s bigger picture is surely something worth seeing. - Innocent Words Magazine

"Daena Jay at The Detroit Bar"

The Detroit Bar starts off 2014 with a one-two wrist-slap of soulful acoustic acts for their monthly Monday night residency. First up is the whimsical folk pixie Daena Jay, who layers melancholy poetry over a mournfully plucked six-string. The Emmy-nominated songstress (and former Oxford Belle) released her debut EP When the Bough Breaks in May 2012—the success of which is still driving her career onwards and upwards, as music critics and fans alike believe she can do no wrong. - OC Weekly

"'What You Always Wanted' Video Premiere"

Originally from Cape Town, chanteuse Daena Jay now calls Costa Mesa her home. A veteran of L.A.’s singer/songwriter circuit, she recently released her sophomore EP SUBDIVISION (Catbeach Music).

The songs are laced through deep soul and heavy pop, but it’s her epic voice that truly gives them power. Here’s a live video of the more gentle and evoking “What You Always Wanted” which was shot overlooking L.A.: - FreeBikeValet.com


“...The album is made up with bold compositions and straight-forward lyrics mostly about inner strength and her longing for love. What's not to like?” - Crayonbeats.com

"Interview With Daena Jay"

Daena Jay was featured on AR a few weeks ago and this week she is back with the first EVER interview I have ever done. Take a read on what inspires the lovely and beautiful Daena Jay and a message for her listeners!

How would describe your own style?

I think right now my music is all about being young and unrestricted. I honestly haven’t tried to figure it all out, or nail myself to a specific genre or style just yet. I’m enjoying the adventure of it, and the music is taking me to some pretty interesting places, which I love. So I guess my style is evolutionary pop… it’s an eclectic mix of indie, pop, with electronic overtones and a side of some good old-fashioned ballads.

Who do you draw inspiration from when you play? Any favorite artists or bands?

Honestly I want the class of Carole King, the Soul of Tracey Chapman, and the funk of Feist or Imogen Heap. I love these woman and many others like them who are talented and brave and freaking epic songwriters.

Current favorite song?

Lately I have become completely obsessed with LA local, Moses Sumney… especially “Plastic”… its beautiful music and honest lyrics, and in my opinion you can’t get better than that!

Do you have any upcoming plans/projects?

I’m currently doing a lot of writing and excited about some new tracks and fresh sounds we are working with. Also, I’m off for an adventure to England and South Africa, ending with a couple days and some private shows in Miami. I’ll be back to Los Angeles for some summer shows in June.

What are you looking forward to the most in the near future?

Well continuing to create fresh music, both for myself but hopefully for other artists! I love collaborating and I’m excited about doing more of that in the future!

Do you have a specific message you want to send out with your songs?

I think each song on my new EP, Subdivision, tells a different story and should provoke different emotions, some of joy others of restlessness, or longing. However, overall I want the record to make its listener feel those emotional and truths a little deeper. My hope with Subdivision is that its makes you feel, that it’s an experience. - Abduction Radiation

"The interesting life of Daena Jay: An interview"

We were able to catch up with Daena Jay, known for her songs on "General Hospital." She recently released “Subdivision” in March of this year. When we heard that soulful music, we wanted to know more about the person that produced it.

LaPrade: “You are both a singer and a song-writer, do you also play any instruments? Do you have other creative outlets?”
Daena Jay: “I have played the piano since I was a child, but in the last few years I picked up a Baby Taylor. Its the perfect travel guitar and so whenever I'm on the road, Baby is my constant companion. I also like to experiment with other random instruments including the Harmonium which was featured on the last record. Oh and I did try the tambourine once... Utter Failure!Aside from music, my creative outlets include cooking. I love creating food. I also tried painting, but like the tambourine, it just wasn't mean to be.”

LaPrade: “How would you describe your music to someone not familiar with your style?”
Daena Jay: “I would probably call it indie pop, with a little electronic flare and a hint of singer/songwriter melancholy. I feel like most of the time my music tends to be funny and sad all at the same time!”

LaPrade: “We hear that you have lived on 4 different continents, do you have a favorite place in the world? If so, what makes it stand out? Since I write primarily for music in Boston, have you been there? If so, what do you think? How do you feel about the LA scene?”
Daena Jay: “Actually, I've lived on 3 continents (Africa, North America and Europe but then I have spent large chunks on the last few years in Australia... so I guess that counts!) Anyway, I'm not sure I can pick a favorite but I will say that each is a favorite in its own way. Each brings out a different side of me and a different side to my songwriting for sure...England makes me feel quite Visceral, Australia makes me Rebellious, South Africa makes me Introspective, and The US makes me Restless.

As for Boston, I visited years ago so I'm not sure I can give an accurate impression but what I will say that I have always been desperate to go back... so whatever I experienced there has stuck with me!

Then when it comes to LA... It feels like I'm still learning. The city is so vast and the people so diverse, it makes me feel young and naive as a musician but it also makes me want to be a whole lot better - which I appreciate. It's a city of amazing talent and that pushes me for sure.”

LaPrade: “Do you have a favorite song that you've created? Tell us about it.”
Daena Jay: “Wow, that's a hard one... they all mark stages of my journey as a musician as well as a person but I think on my new album, “What You Always Wanted” has been hitting a special spot for me... maybe that's because I'm back in Cali and the restlessness has set in.”

LaPrade: “I found the song 'I Will' to be particularly captivating. How do you feel about the prospect of it being an anthem for courage? Can you tell us anything about what inspired that track?”
Daena Jay: "'I Will' is defiantly about courage. At the time I wrote 'I Will' I had been going back through an old college syllabus of mine, which focused on slavery and all other forms of racial oppression. I was so struck by the will of man, to persevere, to rise above, to fight for freedom even in the face of such blaring oppression. So the song starts with what is meant to sound like shackles and even the imagery is meant to be reminiscent of those dark times and the people who suffered through them. 'I Will' is an anthem for those men and woman, whose courage and tenacity helped create a better world."

LaPrade: “As a strong female voice, do you have anything to say to the young girls and inspiring musicians out there?”
Daena Jay: “I would just encourage them to focus on the craft, on the music and lyrics themselves. There are so many gimmicks out there today, and it can all end up being about selling a brand rather than offering a song, so my appeal would be to write what is honest and real, go after what is genuine!”

LaPrade: “How important is music and art in your life?”
Daena Jay: “I honestly believe that the human soul needs beauty, whether that be visually or musically, we need those things in our life... to be inspired, to have our senses touched and I think music and art do that so profoundly. I know from personal experience that I need those things, and that they are fundamental to a good life.”

LaPrade: “What are your music-related goals?”
Daena Jay: “Well I want first and foremost to keep growing and improving, I want to continue to commit myself to the craft of music and songwriting. Then beyond those personal goals, I'd love to continue to write and record, maybe work on a tour soon, as well as perhaps do some collaborative work with some of the artists I most admire. I think ultimately I want to continue to partner with amazing musicians and create really good music.”

LaPrade: “Do you feel most comfortable performing live or recording in the studio?”
Daena Jay: “Recording for sure... haha those who know me know how awkward my first few shows were; I mainly just kept my head down and eyes closed. No but seriously I think of the last year I have really begun to enjoy the buzz of a live performance and hopefully I will continue to grow into that space even more but my first love has always been writing and singing, tucked away in some dark room. The studio I work in provides that version of heaven for me. Peace and Creativity... oh and a Piano, that's all I need!”

LaPrade: “Where do you draw your inspiration from?”
Daena Jay: “I really do draw inspiration from all over. I think personal experience always adds a certain depth, but when my life is feeling a little boring I turn back to my first love (books) and in their pages are all kinds of experiences to be had. I have always had a very vivid imagination, which I think has often helped me when I'm writing, it enables to me to be able to take my story or someone else's and give it life though music and I think that's what I love about song writing is that at the end of the day you are telling a story, and asking your listener to understand.”

LaPrade: “Is there anything you want to tell my readers?”
Daena Jay: “I loved creating this new project SUBDIVISION and I really hope your readers will love it as well; I hope they will enjoy the journey that it offers and that, in some small way, they will feel touched by its truth.” - Examiner.com

"Daena Jay's 'I Will' Destined To Be Anthem For Courage"

Emmy-nominated songwriter and singer Daena Jay released “Subdivision” last month. The pearl of that EP is “I Will.” It starts with booming percussion with a solid beat, jingles and other mysterious background noises. When paired with her beautiful voice and the repetition of her words, the track becomes an anthem for courage. There's a Youtube video available as a preview for the album. View it here. The video gives you a peak into the recording of the song, but only a minute long. It leaves you wanting more!

Daena Jay has lived in many places, truly a woman of the world. Whether inspired from her roots in South Africa, her current home in Los Angeles, or previous stays in London and Australia; her experiences have shaped her artistry. Her music is poetry, set to music. - Examiner.com

"Rising Star Daena Jay Shines Bright on SUBDIVISION"

Chances are you missed the debut EP from singer/songwriter Daena Jay — it slipped under my radar, that’s for sure — but here’s a chance to remedy that. The Los Angeles resident (and native South African) positively shines on sophomore release “Subdivision.”
With a sultry voice and first-rate writing chops, Jay has crafted a five-track EP that merits your attention. There isn’t a bad song to be found here, with Jay shining brightest on “I Will,” “I’m No Good,” “What You Always Wanted” and “Heart Beat Ready.” Keep an eye on this rising star. (Jeffrey Sisk) - Pittsburgh In Tune

"Notes From Left Of The Dial"

Singer-songwriter Daena Jay recently released her sophomore EP, "Subdivision," on CatBeach Music, and it finds her taking a much more aggressive stance than on previous songs—though that aggressiveness doesn't necessarily translate to sounding louder. On "Subdivision," she has created songs that feel and sound bolder than anything she's done before, with songs more focused on beat-centric rhythms and deceptively simple vocal melodies.
With single "This Love," Jay and her bandmates seem to latch onto the world around them and their place in it. This is a marked departure for them, as her previous EP, "When The Bough Breaks," felt far more introspective and inwardly focused. On this track, ringlets of acoustic and electric guitar encircle her soulful voice—a voice that can express years of experience without becoming bogged down in memory. "This Love" weaves a lovingly crafted ear-tugging melody that ensnares you and just won't let go, not that you'd really want it to. - Nooga.com

"Making Noise - Daena Jay"

We’ve been busy with both NAMM and SXSW coverage and haven’t had a chance to post a Making Noise segment for a couple of months. Today we’ll remedy that with a new track from singer-songwriter Daena Jay. Originally from South Africa, this young writer with an old soul has been shaped by many home-cities around the world that captured her spirit and imagination including London, Durban, Cape Town, Perth, and LA. Stories of life and love and loss have made their way to Daena who writes as a true outlet of creative expression.

I Will is the first track from Daena Jay’s new EP Subdivision which was released yesterday, March 18th, 2014 on via CatBeach Music. You can stream or download the track below... - The Noise Room


“Emmy-nominated LA alt-pop singer/songwriter Daena Jay follows up her 2012 debut EP When The Bough Breaks with Subdivision (March 18), a five song collection that offers a subtle shift from Bough's contemplative folk/pop etchings to bolder, more colorful musical canvas. Lead single "I Will" backs up its aspiring lyrical message with an equally solid instrumental stance as the song's slow marching beat builds one line at a time, Jay's smoky vocals stepping into the spotlight with confidence and verve. Think of the South-African born songstress as Regina Spektor's moody cousin.” - Direct Current


(CBM110) CatBeach Music

1. I Will
2. I'm No Good
3. What You Always Wanted
4. This Love
5. Heart Beat Ready

When The Bough Breaks
(CBM101) CatBeach Music

1. Wishful Thinking
2. April Showers
3. A Little Less Heartache
4. One Last Go
5. Hush Little Heart


Home Again (released via ABC TV)
Fall Down (released via ABC TV)
This Could Be (released via ABC TV)
Lead Us Home (released via CatBeach Music)
I'll Take You (released via CatBeach Music)



Daena Jay, once an arcane writer, launched onto the Los Angeles singer-songwriter scene in 2010 after a chance encounter with producer/songwriter Bobby Hartry. That meeting eventually led to a collaboration resulting in their Emmy-nominated song ‘Home Again’ and multiple network television placements for their songs ‘This Could Be’ and ‘Fall Down’.

Daena’s debut project, a 5-song EP titled ‘When The Bough Breaks’, is richly layered – painting melancholic pictures in tension with playful overtones and melodies featuring ironic tales of hope and fateful reality, set to an epic and haunting soundtrack.

Daena's latest project: SUBDIVISION, released via CatBeach Music on March 18, 2014. SUBDIVISION takes on a more aggressive and bold sound with a beat-based musicality and rhythmic vocal melodies. Lyrically, SUBDIVSION has fewer introspective and melancholy moments while capturing more visceral and primal expressions. Daena seems to throw herself headlong into love, the sensual, the unknown. In the chorus of “I’m No Good” Daena demands, “I wanna feel your heartbeat next to me”. Gone are the misgivings of ‘When The Bough Breaks’, which are replaced with ‘SUBDIVISION’’s new found courage. 

Originally from South Africa, this young writer with an old soul, has been shaped by many home-cities around the world that captured her spirit and imagination, including London, Durban, Cape Town, Perth, and LA. Stories of life and love and loss have made their way to Daena who writes as a true outlet of creative expression.