Jones on the jump to Los Angeles

Student Chaya Jones wins singing competition


Sydnie Barrett

Chaya Jones, ‘21, who recently won the PBS Celebration of Music showcase, is excited for the opportunity to demonstrate her love for singing.

Chaya Jones, ‘21, is marching band drum major by day, singer by night and she recently won the PBS Celebration of Music. The new talent search  showcases some of the best and youngest musicians, singers, bands and dancers from all over the United States. Talents from ages four to 25 were encouraged to send in their audition tapes. And WHHS’ very own Chaya Jones took to the stage to sing and show her passion for music.     

When asked how she prepared for Celebration of Music, Jones said, “I kind of just prepared like by practicing and singing the songs.” While this might seem like unhelpful or ineffective, singing a song repeatedly can help you find out what your challenges are and how to fix them, making sure that you are warmed up for multiple situations and that your voice is clear is absolutely necessary. It can help singers perfect their own rendition if they aren’t going to be singing the original studio version.

The competition had two rounds, an audition phase and a live audience phase. For her audition, Jones sent in a video of her singing ”Take the Box” by Amy Winehouse. The judges contacted her the next day and said they wanted her to perform in front of a live audience. In the second half of the competition, there would be two winners. The call meant Jones had to get vocally and mentally prepared to sing a different song. For this round, Jones sang “Writing’s on the Wall” by Sam Smith from the movie “007: Spectre.”

It makes me feel amazing. It’s the one thing I enjoy doing the most. If I just sit down and write or sing everything I just melt away.”

— Chaya Jones, '21

After winning one of the fan favorite votes in her city and the producers’ overall vote, Jones got picked to go to Los Angeles following her live audition. The producer pick also means that she will be on the show that gets broadcasted to the entire country. Jones will have the chance to meet with some music producers as well. This is just a step into what Jones sees for her future musically. “I’ve been studying and planning on going to college for music, either vocal performance and like music production or like commercial music production or something like that,” Jones said.

Amid all the excitement, Jones anticipates her upcoming trip to Los Angeles.  “…that’s crazy to me, because I didn’t think I would be able to do it and when they called my name, I was kind of shocked,” Jones said.

Almost everyone looks up to someone. Sons look up to their fathers. Daughters look up to their mothers. Younger siblings look up to their older ones. Even celebrities and singers look up to and are inspired by people. Jones’ personal role models include, “Ella Fitzgerald, Sarah Vaughan, Lauryn Hill, Aretha Franklin, and Beyonce.”

Music is something that you can tell Jones loves. “It makes me feel amazing. It’s the one thing I enjoy doing the most. If I just sit down and write or sing everything I just melt away,” Jones said.

So, Chaya Jones may be a drum major by day, singer by night and perhaps renowned singer in the near future. But, most importantly, Jones is passionate about achieving her dreams.