Janice Gilbert grew up on a farm near Miller, South Dakota. Like most performers, she started singing at an early age, mostly in her church and community. Gilbert continued singing and performing in school and for various functions, entertaining audiences at Mr. SDSU fundraising events, open mics and talent shows. Gilbert entered a few singing competitions and advanced to the State finals in such notables as the Colgate Country Showdown and the Dakota Entertainment’s $10,000 Karaoke Showdown, but it wasn’t until September 11, 2004 that the real transformation as a true talent took place.
Gilbert’s talent earned her the coveted spot of being the 2004 Dakota Star Talent Search winner at the South Dakota State Fair. As a result of this contest she won the opportunity to record with Chad Sharp of the Minneapolis, MN based independent record label C-Sharp Productions. In May of 2005 she released her first CD single, which featured three original songs. Gilbert’s single is the highest-selling CD of all the Dakota Star winners to date.
This turning point in Gilbert’s career inspired her to focus on songwriting and to become more involved in the music industry. In June of 2006, Gilbert moved to Nashville, TN where she currently teaches music and continues to write with many talented writers and often plays at various writers clubs in the Nashville area including the world renowned Bluebird Cafe.
Gilbert is a member of the Nashville Songwriters Association International (NSAI) and the Tennessee Songwriters Association International (TSAI). In the 3 1/2 years that Gilbert has been in Nashville and a member of TSAI she has been nominated for the organization’s Horizon Award in 2007 as well as the Most Promising Female Songwriter in 2008 and 2009. Gilbert has had several songs signed to single-song publishing contracts as well as had her song "When A Steel Magnolia Surrendered" recorded by Nashville independent artist, Kendra Miles.
"Pickin' Life's Pocket" is Gilbert's debut full-length CD. The CD features 10 original songs written by Janice and some of the best writers Nashville has to offer. “I am so excited for everyone to hear the CD. I am constantly amazed by the amount of great music in Nashville that will never be heard and I don’t want my music to fall into that category.”
Gilbert uses her real-life experiences from the Mid-West to fuel her songwriting. This is evident in the CD’s first single, “Corn In The Silo”, a song written about the songwriter’s farming dad. “I just think this song is a wonderful testament to his character. He raised us to believe that we could do anything and without that encouragement I wouldn’t be following my dreams in Music City.”