Donna De Lory has been around the big top of American pop music for most of her life. Raised in a musical home, her grandfather played cello and upright bass for the Warner Bros. Studios orchestra, her mother was a singer and dancer, and her father, keyboardist and producer Al De Lory, made records with Phil Spector's Wrecking Crew and even played on the Beach Boys' landmark Pet Sounds album.

Donna made her own professional debut at age 8 singing a Recipe dog food commercial. And by the time she hit junior high, she had been immortalized as the voice warbling the theme song for Disneyland's "It's A Small World" ride; she also sang vocals on albums by Barry Manilow, Kim Carnes and Santana. De Lory's vocal on a demo tape led to her landing her breakthrough gig as one of Madonna's two singing/dancing stage companions. She performed on all of Madonna's biggest tours - from "Who's That Girl?" to "The Drowned World Tour," and took part in the bold and brassy "Truth or Dare" documentary.

During that time, she released a self-titled debut album on MCA Records that produced a No.1 single in Japan and a top 10 dance hit in the U.S. The touring for that CD also introduced Donna to a world of music she hadn't heard before: "At one point, I went to places like Brazil and Israel to promote my solo record," explains De Lory. "And I was getting influenced by a lot of world music. I started studying Asian dance prior to making my first video and that put me on a whole new path musically as well."

After parting ways with MCA in the mid-90s, Donna really began to hone her own sound, collaborating on a new album with cellist, Cameron Stone. Her pop experience and emerging interest in world sounds combined with his classical training to form a beautiful musical hybrid. The resulting CD, "Bliss," led Donna to new fans in surprising places, including yoga centers. "It felt really free," she says. "When you play a place like that, the people are so into the music. They want to be taken away. They're closing their eyes. They're breathing deep. They're dancing. They're really listening."

These performances, coupled with Donna's burgeoning yoga practice and immersion in that lifestyle, began to open her ears even further. She'd play Indian records and get transfixed by the sound of a tabla. She'd hear chanting floating out of a Hare Krishna temple in Laguna Beach. She'd discover a harmonium lying around at a party, and she'd pick it up, and she'd find herself soothed by the sound of it. Soon Donna found herself adding Sanskrit chants to her repertoire, which meant that she had to adjust her notions of what qualifies as a performance. She laughs as she remembers thinking: "All we're going to say is `jaya jaya shiva shambo' for 45 minutes? Wow. This is really repetitive. But then I got into it, and I saw all these other people getting into it. You just get lost in the music."

That sense of freedom and purpose led Donna directly to her latest venture, a Sanskrit chant CD for the record label, Ajna Music. And while a collection of ancient Indian mantras set to modern beats may seem like a departure, for Donna De Lory, this seamless blend of east and west, devotion and pop, is just the next bold step in her continuing musical evolution.




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Donna De Lory

  • Is a beautifull job...bless you

    -- siri kartar kaur
  • it is amazing

    -- terri spirk
  • hello donna we are still waiting to here from you. please visit your pray room. JAI MAHAKAALI SHAKTI DURGA MAA;

    -- catherine dookie
  • hello, donna eu sou mara silvia, te admiro muto. abracos.

    -- mara silvia