Some people stay put forever and let their aspirations halt within the county lines of their hometown. Huntingburg, Indiana, native Danielle Lee branched from her small town roots, finding her dreams taking her to Nashville, Tennessee, where she is beginning to leave her own musical footprint in the country music capital of the world. The budding songstress reflects about her successful 2014 and plans for the new year during this recent chat.
If you think that venturing into a demanding music career means that you voluntary give up an education, any chance of a stabilized romantic relationship, and forgetting that small town where you planted those roots, then Danielle Lee has defied those aforementioned expectations.
She earned her degree at Indiana University. She got the boy and married him. She has the undeniable support of her hometown, so much so that they used her song, “Indiana Home,” in a promotional video.
Oh, and all of that happened this year.
“I’m very grateful for what 2014 brought me, I had a great band in the summer that played with me during the fair and festival season, I never felt so busy in my life with a wedding all buzzing at once,” Danielle said. “It was definitely worth it and I proved to myself that I can just about do anything if I put my mind to it.”
Career-wise, she has a solid plan that began to take shape once she moved to Music City earlier this year. Here are just a few of her selected highlights:
- Filmed “Our Indiana Home” music video.
- Competed in the Jasper Texaco Country Showdown where she won the People’s Choice Award.
- Met with performance coach (and Grammy-winning powerhouse vocalist) Linda Davis.
- Mentored by Hall of Fame songwriter Red Lane who has penned hits for Dottie West, Merle Haggard, George Strait, and Lee Ann Womack.
- Mastered the ukulele and has incorporated it into her live shows.
It’s no easy feat to impress industry executives and Danielle is using her business and tech-savvy skills to break into a business that is currently experiencing a lack of female talent at radio.
Danielle noted, “Social media has been the resource I rely on most when it comes to spreading my music. Performing live is one thing, but spreading the word about the shows on social media has helped my efforts tremendously.”
She recently launched a GoFundMe campaign (a popular trend with independent artists) to record a radio-ready album; producer Ron Oates with Jes Fine productions has already asked to collaborate on the project with Danielle. Fans may contribute to the fundraiser here.
Her cover of the “Hanging Tree,” originally performed by Jennifer Lawrence of “The Hunger Games” fame, has topped over 80,000 views on YouTube since its release in late November.
“I have never received so many views in one video, I just hope those who see it and like it will continue to follow me and my journey through Music City. The more exposure I get, the better, you never know who will see it,” Danielle said.
As the new year approaches, Danielle has her sights set on some major goals, including reaching her fundraising goals, generating radio support, and reaching new heights as a songwriter.
“I hope to sell my first song to a major artist next year. I want to be an accomplished songwriter, and with my new songwriting colleagues, I hope we can achieve that together,” Danielle allowed. “I have many songs and ideas in my moleskin journal that are ready to be heard and composed, I’m just waiting for the right opportunity and the right person to write it with. “
Her confidence proves that her musical horizon illuminates just as bright as the neon lights beaming from Broadway and her talent matches that notion.
She concludes, “Producer Ron Oates told me, ‘You have to be present to win.’ And that’s what I’m here for, I’m here to win.”
Catch Danielle Lee at Monkey Hollow Winery on January 24, 2015 from 4:00 – 7:00 pm. Follow her on Twitter here. View upcoming tour dates and more on her website.