Samantha & The Alchemist: Singer/songwriter group from Mason, Ohio (May 2013 - present). The founders are Samantha Carlson (singer, lyricist) & Miguel Castellanos (multi - instrumentalist, music composer).
Samantha Carlson, born in Mineola, New York, has been singing since age 2. She graduated from Northern Kentucky University in May of 2011 with a Bachelors Degree in Vocal Performance. Music is her passion and her life. She sings the classic standards from the 1920s through today, as well as jazz, big band, show-tunes, country, oldies, classical, opera, and pop ... (English, Italian, Spanish, German, & French), but she identifies herself mainly as a jazz/standards singer. Raised in a musical family, both parents are vocalists and instrumentalists. Their influence was very strong. They always encouraged her passion for music, and to follow her dreams. Her other influences include Dean Martin, Ella Fitzgerald, Tony Bennett, Frank Sinatra, Judy Garland, Barbra Streisand, Nat King Cole,
Josh Groban, and Andrea Bocelli.
In 2013, Samantha performed at a benefit concert for PBS SoCal in Orange County, CA, and continues to perform for fundraisers with JT and California Dreamin' in the Orange County area. She has performed alongside local and international celebrities such as Nick Clooney (2011,2012), Bucky & Martin Pizzarelli (2009), Maxine Brown (2007), Hilary Kole (2009, 2010), and Kevin Covais of American Idol (2006). Samantha has performed at "Birdland", the legendary jazz club in New York City, as a guest artist in 2009 and 2010. Since 2009, she has been the female vocalist for Swingtime Big Band -- Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky/Indiana’s premiere 17-piece swing band. Samantha, along with Swingtime Big Band, performed at the 2009 opening night of the Cincinnati Red’s game.
Samantha currently lives in Cincinnati, Ohio, performs with her jazz combo, and with several big bands, locally, and nationally.
Originally from the Dominican Republic. From a very early age showed strong musical inclination and ability to learn rhythm patterns with different percussion instruments. Self-taught musician (guitar, bass, drums, percussion, piano), had to put music aside in order to complete his education (chemist, hence The Alchemist) and make a living to support his family. Music became an escape from time to time in order to cope with the stress of life.
About 2008, decided to renew his passion for music and decided to do it from a different angle. Instead of concentrating on playing cover songs, decided to explore the field of music writing. Started by purchasing the recording console for his home recording studio and continue to this date by purchasing more “toys” (musical instruments and recording accessories).
Started this new life-phase by composing jazz tunes and releasing them in the internet via his Reverbnation page: http://www.reverbnation.com/miguelcastellanos. At several times during this adventure, reached #1 in the Reverbnation jazz charts.
Met Samantha Carlson, an already professional jazz singer and asked her if she would like to collaborate with him on a new adventure: writing of original pop/pop-rock songs. Samantha accepted and it has been a wonderful collaboration!