What is the first experience you remember with music?
In my house when I was a kid. Dad used to play the guitar at night and my siblings and I would with sing and dance on top of his bed!
What time did you decide you wanted to be a singer?
I became a professional singer when I was 28 years old.
I went to Pharmacy school in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil and when I moved to the US I became I license pharmacist but when I married a pianist in the Unites States I abandoned my career as a pharmacist to pursue my dream of singing.
What musical personality do you think influenced you most in your beginnings?
A Brazilian composer and singer called Chico Buarque. I was always moved by his lyrics and music. The love for Brazilian music came first and then the love for the interpreters.
What are your favorite singers or musicians?
I love so many artists... To name a few singers, I love Nina Simone, Billie Holiday, Dolores Duran, Elis Regina, Sarah Vaughan, Edit Piaf, Amy Winehouse, etc. And musicians, Edu Lobo, João Bosco, Tom Jobim, Chico Buarque, Oscar Peterson, Heitor Villa-Lobos, Chopin, etc. I also love and respect my husband's (John Allen Watts) compositions.
What repertoire do you feel most at ease today?
My own music. Once I started composing I felt a more honest voice inside myself.
Tell us, please, any experience or anecdote that comes to mind that has to do with your voice or your professional experience.
I've recently received an award for best Brazilian CD in the US according to the Brazilian community (the Brazilian Press Award). I received the news by e-mail and on the next day I received an urgent message from their main office asking me to speak with the person in charge of the event as soon as possible.
I thought they made a mistake giving me the prize (my CD was competing with an amazing Brazilian composer). For my surprise, they were inviting me to sing a song on the day of the event. I saw the "size" of my insecurity as a woman composing...
What do you think about the current situation of musicians and singers?
A difficult situation but them again, I don't think artists had ever had an easy life ever. It is hard to produce real music in our days when big producers are investing massively on "fast" music (music that satisfies the senses for a very short while).
I am optimistic though. For as long as I keep doing what I love I will try not to be attached to the result. The "doing what I love" is more important then "making big in the music business".
What advice or recommendations would you give to those who are now beginning to sing?
Keep on doing what you love no matter what. Imitate your favorite singers without feeling any chame but avoid copying body mannerisms and facial expressions! Whatever you do, aim to find your own voice and style.
Do you want to add something more about your relationship with music?
My relationship with music is a great one. It involves lots of gratitude. If I get greedy and keep wishing more instead of feeling thankful, I block something that I cannot quite describe.
Where can our readers find more information on the net about you?
My website: www.deborawatts.com