The national press was predicting that singer/songwriter Alana Grace would soon emerge as the female rock voice of her generation, even before she turned 18. And now that she’s legally an adult, there’s every indication that the prediction will come true perhaps sooner than expected.
The haunting and hypnotic voice of Alana, 18, came to the forefront when her song Black Roses Red, co-written with Michael Ochs, emerged as the standout on the soundtrack for the movie The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants. A memorable performance on the Today show helped spark a nationwide buzz. Indeed, Teen People dubbed her “the next Alanis Morissette” for her preternatural maturity and depth.
Like Morisette, Alana has a dark side that she’s not afraid to explore. She delves into the deep crevices of her soul to discover the lasting effects of betrayal, heartache and loneliness. The result is a poetic analysis of the anguish and longings that many people of every age find too painful to put into words. She is one of the few artists perhaps that mothers and daughters alike can understand and appreciate. “I really look at what’s going on in my life and how I feel about the things that are going on, which is the difference between me and a lot of teen singers out there right now,” she says. “They just say what’s happening, not how they are feeling about it.” But it’s not just her ability to express raw angst that has distinguished Alana from the pop princesses: her rich, soulful delivery has earned comparison to Pat Benetar, while her artistic exploration and commercial sensibilities are reminiscent of Gwen Stefani.
Born in Los Angeles and moving to Nashville, she began singing soon after she learned to talk, and began creating her own melodies soon after that. “I was that little girl with the hairbrush pretending to sing for the cameras,” she says. “My earliest memories are when I was two or three singing for my family.” She appeared on stage for the first time in kindergarten, when she landed one of the few solo singing parts in a play set to nursery rhymes. A low din of conversation ended the moment Alana took the microphone and began to sing Hush Little Baby. The crowd remained transfixed in silence until a few moments after she finished when the entire gymnasium broke out in applause. It was here that Alana felt her first love of the stage which has kept her on the performance track throughout her life.
As a child, Alana took classes in ballet, jazz, tap, and hip hop, which helped land her a role of orphan in Oliver at the age of 8. “That’s when I learned that you really could do this for a living,” she says. It was her drive and natural charisma which led her to roles in several other productions, including Annie, Cinderella, and later scoring a lead as Bernadette in Bernadette of Lourdes and Wilder in The Piper. In addition to taking piano and acting classes, Alana spent many years on the competitive dance team for the DC Dance Factory and was later part of a singing group called The Opry Mills Teen Ambassadors. She has appeared in an NBC Movie of the Week, a TNN Entertainment Special, several PBS pilots, and numerous music video and TV specials, all while maintaining an A average in school.
Vocally, Alana has worked with some of the best writers and producers in the business such as David Foster, Glen Ballard, Billy Mann, Keith Thomas, Victoria Shaw, Gary Burr, Guy Roche, Mauro Malevasi among many others. She’s performed and recorded internationally and sang the anthem at sports events from the New York Giants to the Nashville Predators. She has also been a long time supporter of children’s charities and performed for the Children’s Miracle Network, St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital, Andre Aggassi’s Grand Slam for Children, Vanderbilt’s Radiology Stars, and the Aksarben Foundation.
An extraordinary singer and charismatic performer, Alana spent months in Los Angeles studios recording with producers Don Gilmore (Linkin Park, Good Charlotte) and John Fields (Switchfoot, Pink) creating her first full length album. She wrote or co-wrote all the songs on “Break the Silence” which was mixed by industry legends Bob Clearmountain (the Rolling Stones, Aerosmith) and Chris Lord-Alge (Green Day, Hoobastank).
“When I started writing,” she says of her songs, “it all fell into place.” With her infectious melodies and unique expressions of personal empowerment Alana Grace is coming into her own as an artist, giving voice to her innermost feelings and sharing them with the world.