Musician Chelsey Danielle is known to play a variety of instruments. She’s a drummer for Helium Queens, The Chamber Rock Ensemble and for musician Poppy Xander, and also plays keys for Denton psych-rock band Pearl Earl.
This Monday, she posted a video of the Celine Dion sap fest and Titanic soundtrack anthem “My Heart Will Go On,” performed on the marimba. The video shows her performing a delightfully quirky, curiously lovely, yet still familiar, cover she arranged herself.
Danielle says she was on tour with Pearl Earl last year when the band's photographer, Ellie Alonzo, proposed that the band stop by the Titanic Museum in Tennessee. When they arrived, the famous song was playing in the parking lot, and Danielle's band mate Stefanie Lazcano suggested she learn to play the song on the marimba.
“Stefanie told me that song would sound great on the marimba and would love to see me play that for her one day," Danielle recalls. "I told her challenge accepted.”
Danielle searched on and offline for an arrangement of the song for the marimba with no luck, so she arranged it herself.
“When I started writing it, I got a lot of inspiration from the piano score, and I had to listen to the song over and over again to pick out the key parts,” she says. “It took about a month to write, and another two months to really play it.”
Danielle admits that the song might not have taken so much work if she hadn’t kept her project under wraps.
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“I think it took a little longer to write because Stefanie lives with me, and I wanted to surprise her,” she says. “So I had to hide the sheet music and work on this while she wasn’t at our house. If I heard her pulling in our driveway, I would clean up all the sheet music and act like I wasn’t playing marimba. I kept it a secret from her for about three months, and I finally performed it for her.”
A few months later, with Alonzo’s help and Michael Briggs from Civil Audio, Danielle finally made the video.
Watch Chelsey Danielle’s “My Heart Will Go On” cover below: