Hudson Valley Pop Princess Vying for Votes
This home town pop princess won our hearts at a performance at The Chance in Poughkeepsie before she left town to take on Berklee College of Music. Check her out in her latest audition for K104 : Here's the Vote Link. If you love her, like we do, vote. And while you're there check out some other super-talented Hudson Valley performers who are braving it all for a chance to perform at K104 Fest 2015.
**Repost from 2013**
She makes her entrance slowly letting anticipation build in the Chance Theater. The pit is under siege - a sea of expectant faces pressed up against the front of the stage. A symbiotic chant breaks out - "Sam-DeRosa!, Sam-DeRosa!" - coaxing her down the stairs. The piano keys fall on a series of chords in harmonic cadence, the house lights come up and the half-lifted curtain makes itself scarce as the packed house starts screaming as though a rock star were about to take center stage.
Sam DeRosa -pretty in pink- is a Hudson Valley singer-songwriter pioneering her way through generally unnavigable fantasies of pop-music grandeur. She grew up in a household filled with music - mom Joy and Dad Joe are and always have been singers. All four of the DeRosa children are musically inclined and creative in their own right. Daughter Joanna (19) is a professional dancer with the Gotham City Cheerleaders and back-up vocalist for Samantha. Eldest daughter Nikki released house music that's making rounds in Europe. And, the youngest of the four - brother Joseph (16) - is a drummer extraordinaire.
Sam - a Ketcham High School graduate - is now a songwriting and performance major at Berklee college of music. The designation shines from within as she grabs the microphone owning her way through a set-list that's half punchy-diva covers and half sentimental serenades pulled from her original EP Promise Me. Connect with Sam online.
Her band-mates are mostly pulled from her semesters in Boston where they gig together on the weekends. Their relationship on stage is one of camaraderie. It isn't until the end of the performance when Sam strips the last few songs down to an intimate size - pulling all but one guitar off stage - that her boyfriend Matt Ferguson becomes visible on a romantic level. The rhythm guitarist stands confidently near her abetting with the strumming of strings - mouthing every single word to every single song.
Over all the songstress is private about the relationship, but she is all smiles when she talks about sharing the spotlight with Matt. The pair are a match made in music heaven.
I’ll say, ’Let’s get dinner.’ And we wind up doing a Youtube cover. It’s not worth anything if you don’t have anyone to share it with. (With Matt) I feel like I found something real, true. I don’t plan my wedding. I don’t want to. I just know that come tomorrow I would like to see him, and take it from there.
Matt helped Sam record rough demos of all her songs before Promise Me was released in 2012. Video sharing on the internet has been Sam's main vehicle for exposure, and those early recordings helped launch her into stardom - she has won several voting-based contests; one that landed her an real recorded studio album and another opening for Tyler Ward at Webster Hall.
Rumors that record executives are in attendance have her a little on edge, but she drowns her nerves in the silky sound of her soprano allowing her determination to permeate the room. Her dream is insistent and she is winning hearts one song at a time with compellingly honest lyrics about her adventures in heartbreak with a sub-text for staying power. She has successfully entranced an entire room full of people.
Somebody tell me what it's like to be in love/I've wished upon a star/I've closed my eyes and prayed/Someday my Prince will Come?/Well he must be delayed. (What It's Like)
Check out Sam's latest YouTube video - "I Wanna Love You"
Photography by Hannah Nicole c/o Sam DeRosa
Built in 1912, The Chance Theater has had a long history as a performing arts venue. It was opened as a vaudeville house called the Dutchess Theatre in 1926. In 1970 Larry Plover opened the venue as “Sal’s last Chance Saloon”. Plover turned the old vaudeville theatre into a music venue; welcoming legendary acts such as The Police, The Ramones, Muddy Waters, Pete Seeger and Charles Mingus. In 1994 current owner, Frank Pallett acquired the legendary music venue. Pallett has brought acts such as Bob Dylan, David Bowie, Ted Nugent and countless other contemporary and classic rock bands to Poughkeepsie, NY.