Daniel Island's homegrown hitmakers
Daniel Island is home to a multitude of talented musician and singers. Two top-notch talents with DI roots, Clara Park and Georgia VanNewkirk, both released new music this year.
Park picked up a guitar and started writing music at 14. But it wasn’t till her sophomore year of high school that she realized her love of music could be a career. Park describes her style as a combination of pop and country.
This April, Park released a new song, “Flashback.” The tune is now streaming on all music platforms. “Flashback’ was written with her friend, Blake Davis.
“Blake came to me with the idea for the song last summer while I was home in Charleston, and we co-wrote it over FaceTime that night,” explained Park, a student at Belmont University in Nashville. “The whole idea of the song came from an idea Blake had about a couple being trapped in their house during a storm with nothing to do but work on their broken relationship.”
Park lived on Daniel Island for almost 13 years and was inspired by the area.
“Daniel Island is such a supportive community and every time I come back, I know this is where it all started,” said Park. The singer will be releasing another single next month.
“We are so excited! I also am rehearsing with my band in Nashville to start putting on full band shows, and hopefully we can make our way to Charleston.”
Park has advice for residents interested in pursuing a music career.
“Never stop!” she exclaimed. “Keep learning no matter what because you will always be able to get better.”
VanNewkirk moved to Daniel Island with her family at age 10 and says the area had a huge impact on her music. Her mother, Angel Roberts, is the founder of a popular, award-winning dance program on the island known as Peace Love Hip Hop.
“My mom owns a dance studio on the island and making music that her students can listen to and dance to has always been a goal,” said VanNewkirk, who attends the Savannah College of Art and Design. “I also learned how to play guitar and piano from Braeden at Black Tie Music Academy, and without his encouragement I don’t know if I ever would have had the confidence to continue with music.”
VanNewkirk describes her music style as “psychedelic pink velvet” and added, “interpret that as you will.” Her first single ‘Wish You Well’ is available on all streaming platforms. VanNewkirk was inspired to write the song after a break-up.
“There wasn’t any animosity, but my heart was broken so writing the song was super therapeutic,” she said.
VanNewkirk recently signed with Morning Moon Productions and plans to release a full album in the near future.
“Writing songs has become a part of my daily routine so I have a huge stockpile of music that I am so excited about,” she added.
Her advice to locals pursuing music is to just get started.
“Sing about how you feel,” said VanNewkirk. “Sing about your day. Sing about the infectious smile you saw from someone at a coffee shop. Times have changed so much that anyone can record a song and put it on the internet. So if I can do it, why not you?”