EACH WEEK, OUR ARTIST FEATURE HIGHLIGHTS A DIFFERENT ARTIST WITHIN OUR COMMUNITY.
This week we sat down with local pop songstress Debbie Ilana to learn more about her background and her musical style.
Debbie Ilana is one of those musicians that has just always been a musician. She started on piano at age four, and from there fostered a deep love and appreciation for music. She began crafting her own songs at age thirteen, “I had a friend in high school who played me a song she had written and I remember a wave of realization hitting me that I could write songs, that we could create music. l and started writing performing my original music out live from that age. It’s grown and expanded over time as I’ve gotten older and learned more”. She used her years of piano training in both classical and popular music stylings to begin to form her own voice as a songwriter. She describes her songwriting as ,“a classic, storytelling approach with a more modern sound. I have both modern pop and classic songwriting influences when I write.” Currently inspired by the sounds of St. Vincent, Sylvan Esso, Harold Arlen, Debussy and Feist, Debbie is working on two new projects filled with original songs. She also plays with the local band The Sam Chase and the untraditional.
A few years back Debbie dedicated herself to doing music full time. A huge step for any musician, she says she “always knew, music had always been a huge part of my life and identity and I made the decision to wholeheartedly dedicate myself to it”. With the long term goal of being able to support both herself and her band on solely her original music in mind, Debbie currently teaches lessons and performs at private events to support herself. She teaches piano to all ages, and her “biggest goal is to create a positive association between kids and music”.
As an artist with Ivy Hill, Debbie loves working with her duo, The New Classics, because the classical interpretations of chart topping hits fits right into her area of expertise. “I love how unexpected the New Classics pieces are, and it’s such a gift to be able to perform them and bring music into people’s lives for their special day. If music is what can fund your music that is so incredible that I’m very grateful for”. She wants to instill that idea in her her music students as well, “Above all else I want to stress that music is something that can bring you joy and is a huge gift to bring to other people”. This philosophy represents just a fraction of the positive energy that radiates from Debbie Ilana, making her one of Ivy Hill’s sunniest artists.