Donna Ulisse

Donna Ulisse

 Nashville, Tennessee, USA
BandAmericanaBluegrass

singer-songwriter driven "bluegrass without borders" offering something for everyone who enjoys high quality acoustic music from traditional to contemporary bluegrass with a touch of gospel and country/folk.

Biography

Country music fans remember Donna Ulisse from her time as a traditional country artist on Atlantic Records in the 1990’s with national television appearances on “Hee Haw”, NBC’s “Hot Country Nights”, “Nashville Now” and “Crook and Chase.

Bluegrass fans are getting to know her for her songwriter driven brand of bluegrass, often called “bluegrass without borders” after enthusiastically receiving her 2007 release “When I Look Back” and then her 2009 CD “Walk This Mountain Down”, both produced by guitarist Keith Sewell and both self-penned collections of songs. “Walk This Mountain Down” was a Top 30 Americana chart record while the title track spent six months on the Bluegrass Unlimited chart and the song "I Lied" was #1 five times on SiriusXM's Bluegrass Junction in 2009.
Her song "I'm Calling Heaven Down" won the 2009 Just Plain Folks Award for Best Bluegrass Song.

In April 2010 she released her third bluegrass project titled "Holy Waters". Some might call it a gospel CD while others are labeling it a spiritual endeavor. Ulisse calls it her own "soul journey."

Ulisse is touring more in 2010 and a show with her band The Poor Mountain Boys offers the audience a unique insight into the stories behind many of the songs she has written as well as some great picking.

Lyrics

I'm Calling Heaven Down

Written By: Donna Ulisse/Marc Rossi

EVERYWHERE I GO THESE DAYS
THERE’S ANGER MEETIN’ ME
IT’S LOOKIN’ ME SQUARE IN THE FACE
‘TIL RED IS ALL I SEE
I’M AFRAID IT WILL HAVE ITS’ WAY
AND I’LL TURN INTO SOMETHIN’ I WON’T RECOGNIZE
SO IN THIS HATEFUL HOUR
COULD A HIGHER POWER
MAKE PEACE OF MIND MATERIALIZE

CHORUS:
I’M CALLING HEAVEN DOWN
I NEED SOME ANGELS NOW
I’M IN A THANKLESS CAUSE
THAT AIN’T WORTH FIGHTIN’ FOR
SEND ME A MIGHTY ARMY
WAVING SILVER SWORDS
I’M CALLING HEAVEN DOWN

ALL THESE WORLDLY THINGS I OWN
COME AT A HEAVY COST
WHAT USED TO BE MY HUMBLE HOME
HAS BECOME PARADISE LOST
SOMETIMES I FEEL LIKE I SPIN MY WHEELS
CHASIN’ EMPTY DREAMS THAT STEAL MY TIME AWAY
COULD SOMEONE SHED SOME LIGHT
CAUSE THIS AIN’T WORTH THE PRICE
I’M TIRED OF ALWAYS HAVIN’ HELL TO PAY

REPEAT CHORUS

BRIDGE:
I NEED STRONGER HANDS TO HELP ME UNDERSTAND
JUST WHO MY ENEMIES ARE
SO I’M CRYING OUT IN THESE KILLING FIELDS OF DOUBT
I’M READY FOR A CHANGE OF HEART

REPEAT CHORUS

I Want To Grow Old With You

Written By: Donna Ulisse/Claire Davidson

VERSE 1:
YEARS FROM NOW WHAT I SEE
HAND IN HAND IS YOU AND ME
LAUGHING AND LOVING OUR WHOLE LIVES THRUOGH
WE’LL SHARE OUR JOY AND OUR FEARS
THROUGH THE TRIUMPHS AND THE TEARS
I WANT TO GROW OLD WITH YOU

VERSE 2:
AS THE DAYS TUMBLE PAST
WE’LL MAKE EVERY MOMENT LAST
CHANGE IS SOMETHING THAT WE’LL EASE INTO
THOSE LITTLE LINES ON YOUR FACE
WILL BE MORE BEAUTIFUL EACH DAY
I WANT TO GROW OLD WITH YOU

BRIDGE
THERE’S A HIGHER POWER WHO’S ALWAYS KNOWN
THAT WE WEREN’T MEANT TO GO THROUGH LIFE ALONE

VERSE 3:
I DON’T BELIEVE THE SUN WOULD RISE
IF I COULD NOT SEE IT IN YOUR EYES
WITHOUT YOU, I DON’T KNOW WHAT I’D DO
SO TAKE GOOD CARE OF YOUR HEALTH
PLEASE DON’T LEAVE ME BY MYSELF
I WANT TO GROW OLD WITH YOU

BRIDGE
THERE’S A HIGHER POWER WHO’S ALWAYS KNOWN
THAT WE WEREN’T MEANT TO GO THROUGH LIFE ALONE

REPEAT VERSE 3:
I DON’T BELIEVE THE SUN WOULD RISE
IF I COULD NOT SEE IT IN YOUR EYES
WITHOUT YOU, I DON’T KNOW WHAT I’D DO
SO TAKE GOOD CARE OF YOUR HEALTH
PLEASE DON’T LEAVE ME BY MYSELF
I WANT TO GROW OLD WITH YOU
I WANT TO GROW OLD WITH YOU

Walk This Mountain Down

Written By: Donna Ulisse/Rick Stanley

God, He told Moses
Take these words I’ve set in stone
Move off of this hallowed land
And lead my people home

CHORUS:
Walk down this mountain
Leave your troubles on higher ground
Walk ‘til you reach the promised land
Walk this mountain down
Walk this mountain down

Momma always told me
Life’s hard on this hillside
If you want more than livin’ poor
You gotta leave this ridge behind

CHORUS:
Walk down this mountain
Leave your troubles on higher ground
Walk ‘til you reach the promised land
Walk this mountain down
Walk this mountain down

Now when I’m havin’ worries
Pilin’ heavy upon me
I hear my momma sayin’ child
Just leave ‘em at God’s feet

CHORUS:
Walk down this mountain
Leave your troubles on higher ground
Walk ‘til you reach the promised land
Walk this mountain down
Walk this mountain down

Lyrics reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.
International Copyright Secured.

The Trouble With You

Written By: Donna Ulisse

I’ll tell you flat baby, I’m some part cat
I’ll surely scratch when it comes to what’s mine
Why you want to taunt me, honey, you don’t really want me
Bowin’ up and clawin’ out some strange girl’s eyes
You walk in a room like an accident waitin’ to happen
Usin’ your smile knowing how it’s gonna turn every head
You put me on guard when your baby blues start flashin’
Then I’m blinded by my thoughts that race around in shades of red

CHORUS:
The trouble with you is that you’re so good lookin’
And lookin’ at you is what the women do
The trouble with me is that I don’t trust women
Especially when they’re lookin’ at the trouble with you

You keep me nervous; I know you’re worth it
Don’t want to curse it with my runaway mind
Why can’t I be thankful ‘stead of green-eyed mean and hateful
It’s just that I’m so scared you’ll be the leavin’ kind
You’re shinin’ like a penny, throwin’ your charm ‘round the room
Struttin’ like a star somewhere in Hollywood
You’re actin’ like you don’t know what your walk’s gonna do
While I’m holdin’ me in check but I’d rather throw a fit if I could
And I could

CHORUS:
The trouble with you is that you’re so good lookin’
And lookin’ at you is what the women do
The trouble with me is that I don’t trust women
Especially when they’re lookin’ at the trouble with you

Lyrics reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.
International Copyright Secured.

Levi Stone

Written By: Donna Ulisse/Marc Rossi

Levi Stone lived by the gospel
He taught his child to do the same
So when his son took sick that winter
He knew he’d be fine once springtime came

The boy grew weaker by the hour
But Levi Stone never lost faith
He told his wife no county doctor
Quit your cryin’ woman, kneel down and pray

CHORUS:
Papa, please, a drink of water
Wipe the fever from my brow
Tell these angels all around me
They need to put me down
Papa, you tell them I’m in God’s hands now

Death came hard in fourteen sunsets
A woman’s wail tore through the sky
And Levi Stone sat by the bedside
Lost and alone, betrayed by God that night

CHORUS:
Papa, please, a drink of water
Wipe the fever from my brow
Tell these angels all around me
They need to put me down
Papa, you tell them I’m in God’s hands now

Sixteen years left Levi bitter
He’d lost his son, he lost his wife
The voices whisper, “I’m cold and thirsty”
Well, he lost his mind that winter night

CHORUS:
Papa, please, a drink of water
Wipe the fever from my brow
Tell these angels all around me
They need to put me down
Papa, you tell them I’m in God’s hands now

Lyrics reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.
International Copyright Secured.

Discography

album releases:
1.Trouble At The Door/Atlantic Records in 1991 had three radio singles and two videos that played on CMT
2. When I Look Back/Hadley Music Group was released in 2007 consisting of fourteen original songs. It was promoted to Americana and bluegrass radio and "I'm Calling Heaven Down" went to #2 on the XM Radio Bluegrass Junction chart while "I Want To Grow Old With You" went to the top ten on Sirius Radio's bluegrass Channel 65 show.
3. Walk This Mountain Down/Hadley Music Group released in January of 2009 and went Top 30 on the Americana Music Chart & was #4 in the Euro-Americana chart for March and April 2009. WSM Radio has also added two songs to their playlist. "I Lied" was #1 on Sirius XM's bluegrass channel 65 the first week of June 2009 while 9 other songs off the album were in the top 40. Ulisse was also the #1 artist on Sirius XM's bluegrass channel 65 that week with 66 spins total.
#4: Holy Waters/Hadley Music Group/2010 promoted to bluegrass radio and some gospel radio as well as through Airplay Direct.

Set List

Set list contains original material from "When I Look Back" and "Walk This Mountain Down". Because these are all original tunes being performed by the writer, audiences enjoy hearing some of the stories behind the songs.

Can do two 45 minute sets or one 90 minute set. Also occassionaly mix in a few bluegrass standards such as "Home In The Mountains" ( performed and also written by Rick Stanley), "Slewfoot", "Nobody's Love Is Like Mine". Ulisse also includes a medley with Children Go/Amazing Grace and she does "Who Will Sing For Me"