Donna Ulisse (pronounced "you-liss-ee") was born in Hampton Virginia and surrounded by a musical family, Donna made her first appearance singing at the tender age of three when she wandered onto the stage with a bluegrass band and broke out into "Take This Hammer". From that moment until now, there has never been any doubt that she would be creating music. She worked in a local western swing band where she met and married Rick Stanley, being fully indoctrinated into a bluegrass family when Rick's cousin Ralph Stanley, along with the Clinch Mountain Boys performed at their wedding reception.
In the 1980's Donna moved to Nashville and stayed busy singing demos for publishers and writers. She has had a busy life as a respected vocalist behind the scenes with her first session as a young background singer being for a Jerry Reed album and finding out at the last minute that Reed preferred to sing around the mic with the singers. It was a wonderfully unnerving Experience for the young Ulisse.When renowned country songwriter Glenn Sutton was inducted into the Nashville Songwriter's Hall of Fame, it was Ulisse who was called upon to sing some of his hits recorded by Tammy Wynette and Lynn Anderson for the who's who of the music industry crowd and she brought the house down. Fans still remember her as an artist on Atlantic Records where she was signed and released the album "Trouble At The Door" in 1991. The album had three singles and two videos. During this time she appeared on the network TV show "Hot Country Nights", was a guest on "Hee Haw", "Nashville Now" and "Crook and Chase".
After Donna's deal on Atlantic Records ended, she turned her attention to songwriting. In time her publisher noticed that when she wrote alone, the songs generally took on a bluegrass feel that was vocally authentic when she sang the demos. The company decided to record a project of these tunes and start a label around this effort which became her 2007 CD release, "When I Look Back." The CD has been enthusiastically received by radio and fans. As her first bluegrass release was catching on, Ulisse stayed busy doing some select dates and focused on making sure she was writing enough new tunes for a follow-up CD at the request of her label. She went back in the studio with producer Keith Sewell in March of 2008 to start the recording process once again with the final result being "Walk This Mountain Down," a new collection of self-penned tunes with an all-star cast of players and guests.She also formed her own band, "The Poor Mountain Boys" and began touring in 2009.
In June of 2009 Ulisse was the #1 artist on Sirius XM Satellite radio's Bluegrass Junction channel 65 and her song "I Lied" was #1 five different times during the year. Her song "I'm Calling Heaven Down" won Bluegrass Song of the Year in the 2009 Just Plain Folks Awards and the single "Walk This Mountain Down" spent six months in the Bluegrass Unlimited charts. She and her band are booked at festivals and venues into 2011.