Donna Gentile ~ Music is medicine. Donna Gentile performs folk-pop, roots, Americana and Native Spirit-inspired originals and covers. She belongs to the Conscious Music Movement—lyric-driven music to inspire peace, unity and positive social change. Donna believes that music is medicine. It helped her heal from trauma and today, she uses music, personal stories and humor to comfort, inspire and uplift others.
There is a velvet, honey and rustic edge to Gentile’s sound. Audiences are moved by her rich vocals, inspirational stories and authentic delivery. Original lyrics are woven with deep meaning and upbeat melodies that haunt and hook.
Gentile grew up in Barkhamsted, CT with deep connections to nature, which comes through in her songwriting. As a teen, she wrote poetry and says with a laugh, “it kinda scared the boys away!” With parents singing at home—and a dad playing guitar, mandolin and harmonica—music rooted itself in Donna’s young heart, but she didn’t know she could sing or write songs until she was thirty-eight years old. In 2006, after recording a birth song, Gentile’s vocal gift was revealed and Donna Gentile & The Human Element formed with Gentile as lead vocalist playing rhythm guitar. The band performed R&B, swing, Zydeco, rockabilly and roots music and featured seasoned musicians Dan McNamara (vocals, piano, accordion), Steven Fishman (bass), Con Doty (lead guitar), Keith Legere (drums) and guest musicians on lap steel and mandolin.
Gentile went on to perform solo acoustic and as a duet with Rob (the Drummer) Gottfried at venues and events including Infinity Music Hall, Cheney Hall, Blueback Square, Mandell Jewish Community Center (with speaker, Meredith Baxter of Family Ties), Hope Out Loud Peace & Arts Festival, Legends Rock Bar, Northwest Park Nature Center, Lyceum Conference Center, Annual Walk for the Cure (West Hartford, CT) and numerous festivals, pow wows, restaurants, coffee houses, farmer’s markets, benefits and house concerts in CT and New England.
In 2013, Infinity Music Hall selected Donna as a finalist in their quarterly Open Mic Big Stage competition.
Two of Gentile’s songs have been published to date. This is Me is featured on The Thriver Workbook Companion CD (benefiting programs for victims of abuse) and on Friday Night at LaSalle’s compilation CD (benefiting Canton Community for Concern’s addiction recovery programs). River Song for Kira, inspired by American Indian tradition, was published in Voices Along the River: An Anthology of Nature Poems produced by the Connecticut DEP, Kellogg Environmental Center and Osborne Homestead Museum.
Gentile has twenty original tunes and is currently working with a studio in New York on the release of a debut EP. To pre-purchase her CD, visit donnagentile.com/contribute.