PLAINS, LUZERNE COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) – The Gammy Awards showcase the best of the best in the music business. But every star on that stage started somewhere. One local singer is hoping to be a part of that prestigious group, and she is proving her talent can take her to the top.
She’s a small town girl with global ambitions.
“My ultimate dream is that world tour. That’s what I would love,” says Dani-Elle Kleha.
At 21 years of age, Jermyn native Dani-Elle Kleha dreams big, and is already making quite a name for herself on the music scene. The singer/songwriter has been a CMA, or Country Music Association, member since she was 13, is a Nashville recording artist and recently released her Nashville recorded album titles “Eleven”.
It’s an impressive career that began in Northeastern Pennsylvania nearly two decades ago. “I actually started when I was 3 years old, believe it or not, in a little country church. And the first song I ever sang was a country song called ‘Angels Among Us’ by Alabama,” says Kleha.
From that moment on, she has been climbing the scales. By the time she was 9 she was offered a role in a Broadway production, but turned it down to pursue her passion.
“We took our first trip to Nashville when I was only 12 and I met with my vocal coach Renee who teaches Tim McGraw and Carrie Underwood, and Faith Hill,” says Kleha.
To say her career is hitting a high note is an understatement. She has opened for stars like Luke Bryan and Darius Rucker, and has performed in front of 97,000 people at CMA Fest. But she says the best moment was winning the Josie Music Award for “Female Artist of the Year, Modern Country”, an honor voted on by industry professionals.
Dani-Elle Kleha says “To win such a prestigious award in Nashville was one of the biggest highlights of 2016. It’s been quite a musical journey, because I’ve gone through so many different musical phases in my life, and now playing regularly with my band and playing in Nashville regularly and Nashville is like our second home”.
From Jermyn to music city, Dani-Elle’s star is on the rise, yet she remains humble and grounded.
“The music industry is constantly evolving and constantly changing and that’s what it’s all about. Just the connections and who I get to write with and work with in different areas, not only on stage musically but behind the scenes in the business aspect of it too. It really has opened a lot of doors and I’m just incredibly thankful for that” says Kleha.
While Dani-Elle has the talent, she says it wouldn’t have been possible without the unwavering love and support of her biggest fans, her parents. They’re a constant reminder that she will always have NEPA roots in her country boots.
“And little by little we are working towards it, and I keep saying we make this dream a reality every single day,” says Kleha.
If you want to catch Dani-Elle live locally, her next performance with her band will be at “O-Town” in Olyphant on March 4th from 8 to 11:30. And she is very interactive on her social media pages.
You can follow her on twitter @Danisingz