Second Cup Cafe: Dana Parish

Singer/songwriter Dana Parish considers herself "an old-fashioned girl," and when you hear her music, that rings true. In it, she wears her heart on her sleeve as genuinely as anyone could.

Parish stopped by the The Early Show's "Second Cup Café" Saturday to perform songs from her new album, "Uncrushed."

The native New Jersey girl, who grew up not too far from Philadelphia, was influenced by Motown music.

As a little girl, she loved to sing and rock out to Pat Benatar and, at age 13, the songwriting began. Parish wrote her first song, called "Only You And Me," which she considers a pretty good pop song to this day!

With the encouragement of her voice teacher, Paul Adkins, who even helped by singing backup for her, Parish put herself out there to perform. Since that big push, her life has dramatically changed, and many doors have opened.

In addition to making music, Parish had the oppportunity of a lifetime and sang backup for Michael Jackson at Madison Square Garden.

"I love to sing, and performing live makes me happy. I wouldn't be a songwriter if I wasn't a singer," Parish says on her official MySpace page.

She has also been asked to write for several musicians, which is an impressive compliment to her work. Parish co-wrote and sang a celebrity-based ad called "YOU VOTE," which premiered on Access Hollywood.

Her song, "Watch Me Fly," is the end title cut for the feature film "Gray Matters," which stars Heather Graham and Sissy Spacek. It's also featured in the trailer of the Fox feature film "The Redemption of Sarah Caine," due out this fall.

"I only know what to put forth what is real and authentic," Parish says.
By Melissa Castellanos