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Band R&B Singer/Songwriter


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The best kept secret in music


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Still working on that hot first release.


Feeling a bit camera shy


“I was born to sing, says Symona (born Danielle Simone Martin). "I probably came out of the womb singing!" laughs the petite deep caramel beauty. Symona’s mother is from the south, her father is from Jamaica. She describes her music as a fusion of R&B and Hip Hop, Reggae, and Soul, with a dash of Gospel for flavor. Growing up in a strict Christian household, Symona’s mother, currently the choir director at the church she grew up in, would line up her four daughters, and practice singing for hours. “We toured the local churches, and sang at our church before I could probably even speak properly.” Says Symona, “I come from a musical family, my mom, sisters, and grandmother are all singers. I think it’s hereditary.” The third child, and notably most shy, Symona says she withdrew from music at a young age. “I was shy, quiet.” It took Symona years to concur her stage fright, but stage fright never stopped her from making her talent known. “She sang at talent shows, everyone in my hometown remembers the eighth grade talent show where She belted out Mary J’s remake of “I’m Goin Down”. It was a magical performance. But to bring that much power to the stage, I knew this is what I wanted to do.” Symona had an opportunity to attend the Hartford Academy of Performing Arts, but instead chose to attend regular high school, and to head on to fashion school in 2001 (design is another of her many talents). But she never gave up on music, as attested to her frequent appearances in talent shows, open mic nights, and of course her church choir.

For extra money, Symona sang for weddings, parties, etc. “If a singer was needed, She was the one to go to.” In 2004 Symona sang back up for Corey Clark(an American Idol castoff), at the NAACP LA area Image Awards, honoring LA’s prominent black community. “It gave me a chance to see how the music industry worked, it was great experience.” After the show, Clark, Symona, and the other back up singer taped an interview to be aired on local television stations. “I remember saying look for my album in stores soon, of course I had no album in the works, only a bare bones demo, but I was really proud of it!”

Symona was also in a fledgling R&B group from 2004-2005, tentatively called Wish, but it wasn’t to be. “The so called management had their own agendas,” she said. “There were meetings where we ended up waiting around while they spoke with members of another group, which was supposedly more marketable and pop. The only time I was happy was while recording in the studio, and writing material.” The group’s members decided to disband, but remain friendly. “They just decided it’s not working, and cut our losses.” Symona spent the next year writing and doing as she’d always done, singing in weddings, at her mothers church, and anywhere else. On vacation in Puerto Rico, she and her younger sister sang a few songs in the resort where they stayed in ’s night club. “It was great fun, like the old times!” she muses.

From the outside, Symona possesses a quiet determined strength, sometimes to the point of being called too serious. But, listen to her music, and you’ll find the rugged terrain of her heart. "I write about what I feel, and what I see going on around me, the experiences I have had, and those of my peers, family, friends, etc. I have the ability to write what many feel they can't say," she adds. Symona's music speak of love, hate, happiness, and sadness, hope and despair, so there is always something for everyone. "I myself listen to various artists, Jill Scott, Usher, Dr. Dre, and Knickleback to name a few" As varied as these artists are, Symona's message is clear: "at the end of the day it's about being you, and if you don't feel you are any one genre, you don't have to be." Symona is a driven young lady, with talent in both the music and fashion arenas, but her true love lies in writing her thoughts and singing about them. “I want people to listen to my music, and immediately feel a connection, something pulling on the heart strings. That’s what great music does to me, and I want the same to be said about my music.” With as much talent as this young lady has, it’s a guarantee that people will be saying just that for many years to come.