Many artists look back and say they miss the days before it all happened. Before the big-time there was just the love of music, a desire to connect with others and many new experiences. Now is that time for aspiring singer/songwriter Lucia Valentine. Launching her music career, Lucia is inviting those who like what they hear to come along as she forges her way in to the music world.
No stranger to music, Lucia grew up with a rock-n-roll musician father and a bluegrass-loving momma. Many nights she was literally “rocked” to sleep to Eric Clapton’s Backless album or to refrain after refrain of Carol King’s Alligators All Around. Along with her sisters she grew up singing pop songs, country classics and children’s songs to the accompaniment of her father on guitar. Lucia vividly remembers being inspired by watching him write songs. By five she was singing the hooks note for note and tugging at him to listen to her songs. Expecting a song about ponies or butterflies, he was surprised when she broke into a complex pop melody singing introspective lyrics, “Confused, living in my own world. Confused, don’t know what to do ooo, ooo, ooo, ooo.”
As a native of West Virginia and with a festival-going mother, Lucia couldn’t help but develop a love of bluegrass, roots and Americana styles of music. She ranks Alison Krauss and the Avett Brothers as early inspirations going to their shows and spending endless hours singing their music. By seven, she was playing fiddle by ear. By nine she added trumpet to the mix. However, it wasn’t until her teens when she was invited to sing in the church choir by her grandfather that Lucia began to sing for anyone outside her family. Encouraged by the compliments of choir members and a few close friends, she made a YouTube video singing Fleetwood Mac’s Landslide. From there, members of her high school pop singers group spotted the normally shy singer eagerly recruiting her to join their ensemble. Soon thereafter, she hit the stage for the first time.
As her confidence grew, so did her interest in music. Lucia explored many styles of music, studying the history of each genre and the ins and outs of the how the music business came to be. She gravitated towards the spirit and soul of R&B and gospel music. She began listening to soul singers like Aretha Franklin, Otis Redding, Whitney Houston and songwriters like Steve Cropper and Marvin Gaye. Enthralled by singer/songwriters like Alicia Keys and Sarah Bareilles, Lucia began learning to play the piano. Her love for singing soon became something she wanted to pursue professionally to which her father replied, “show me you can write songs and we can talk about it.” Taking up the challenge she headed for the piano pen in hand and began writing from the heart.
At 18, Lucia is continually performing, writing and recording. She has written and recorded with Grammy Award winning musician/writer Johnny Neel (Allman Brothers/ Gov’t Mule/George Straight) and studied under acclaimed vocal coach Pete Strobl (Eddie and Wolfgang Van Halen/ Chaka Khan). She has penned a number of tunes with her father, Dominic Valentine, and songwriters Jen Smith and Scott Smith of Naked Blue. Together with Producer Scott Smith she has developed her own brand of harmony singing as she continues to write songs with universal themes and appeal. Most of all Lucia is happy to be where she is – right where it all begins.