August 1, 2016
CALMA CARMONA – THE SOULSTRESS
On a hot summer night I was invited to SUBROSA one of the few live music venues in the Meatpacking District of New York City that still books noteworthy talent. This particular night I witnessed something special an artist that seemed to be from another time with an intoxicating voice and beauty that made you put down your cell phone and pay attention. Her name is Myraida Desireé Carmona better known as Calma Carmona a 32 year old Puerto Rican songstress.
In 2007 Calma Carmona started putting audiences into a trance at Cafe Seda in Puerto Rico with her brand of new age soul. She begin building a fan base organically around the island. In 2013 Calma Carmona got the opportunity to open up for Beyonce during the Mrs. Carter Show World Tour. Soon after she begin to perform around he world as an indie artist nothing new considering she was part of a military family and an army brat. Which makes sense when listening to her music you can hear hints of Sade, La Lupe, Janis Joplin with a sprinkle of Erykah Badu.
She released her debut EP, “There’s No Other Girl”, in September 2013. Calma Carmona sings in both Spanish and English not as a gimmick but as an extension of her essence. Half way thru her set at SUBROSA I scanned the room and witnessed that I was not the only one hypnotized by her presence. She performed a sultry rendition of “Fever” a 1959 song written by Eddie Cooley & Otis Blackwell made popular by Peggy Lee but also sung by La Lupe.
In 2015 She released another EP entitled Presentiment “This is a little more experimental than the last one. It has more urban trapped beats, mixed with very soulful baselines and twangy guitars,” explained Calma, who combines her Afro-Latino roots and seamless Spanish to English crooning without sounding trite. “The vocals are very minimal. It’s more about creating a feeling and just hitting play and going towards that space.” This a quote that appeared in VIBE article by Marjua Estevez. The EP included songs like , Trapped in Time , Sin Final , Who Knows & Hours.
According to Calma Carmona‘s website she is currently working on a new album entitled “Girls on a Bridge” with producer Mark Underwood who produced Calma’s song “When I was your girl” and Frequency whose credits include Rihanna’s and Eminem’s hit “Monster” set to be released later this year. As the performance came to an end Calma Carmona thanked SUBROSA for invitation but it was the audience who was grateful and demanded an encore. I left the venue walked to the subway got on the A train,logged on to Spotify searched for Calma Carmona and immediately fell back into the her spell.