Pagpasok pa lamang ng ilang entertainment press, including PEP, sa Tangerine Mediterranean Restaurant in Greenhills, bumulaga sa kanila ang isang malaking tarpaulin ni Martha Joy.
Siya ang 18-year-old new recording artist ng Viva Records na ini-launch last Wednesday, February 18, ang kanyang self-titled debut album. Ang producer nito ay si Christian de Walden of Hollywood na nakapag-produce na rin ng hits nina Sarah Geronimo, Rachelle Ann Go, Claire de la Fuente and other Filipino talents.
Mas maganda in person si Martha Joy kaysa sa pinakitang tarpaulin. She stands 5'7" and has olive skin na nakuha raw niya sa father niya. She's of Eurasian descent, half-Filipino, half-Portuguese, an only child, born and raised at Toronto, Canada.
"My mom is from Masbate, my father is Portuguese," says Martha Joy. "I've visited Masbate last July, 2008, where my mom was born. My lola, who's already 95 years old told me everything. I went back to Toronto last October, 2008 and made a 10-day visit to my lola and told her I've been in Masbate."
Martha Joy started singing almost as soon as she learned to speak. Although hindi siya fluent mag-Tagalog, naiintindihan naman niya ang Tagalog dahil tinuruan siya ng mommy niya at nahilig siyang manood ng mga Tagalog movies. Ang una niyang napanood na Pinoy film ang 2004 movie ni Aga Muhlach at Kristine Hermosa, ang All My Life. Simula noon, natuto na rin siyang mag-collect ng Tagalog movies, including movies of Fernando Poe Jr.
"The first Tagalog song that I learned was 'Nandito Ako' which my mom taught me. I took voice lessons when I was nine years old, I can sing classical songs when needed," dagdag pa ni Martha Joy.
Nang kumanta na ng three songs si Martha Joy, isa dito ang carrier single niyang "Dumating Ka" na isang composition ni Jimmy Borja, humanga ang mga entertainment press dahil sa range ng voice niya na parang walang kahirap-hirap kumanta. May nagbulong sa PEP na biro daw kay Martha Joy, magkunwari naman itong nahihirapang kumanta. Pero talagang iba ang range ng boses niya na malapit nang marinig dahil malapit na niyang i-launch ang album niya sa SOP next month at magkakaroon din siya ng mall tour.
Although she enjoys singing traditional R&B/pop music, her heart is truly drawn to singing classical songs with soaring melodies that mesmerized the audience at her first solo concert in November 2007 at the Toronto Centre for the Arts where she sang 22 powerhouse songs.
She started winning trophies in singing competitions as a child. These include six first-place awards in the Kiwanis Music Festival, she has also performed in countless events in and outside Toronto, like her solo performances before the United Nations Global Peace initiative in Geneva, Switzerland, the Mike Bullard Show on CTV and of the Canadian National Anthem for games of the Toronto Raptors at the Air Canada Centre.
Martha was only 11 years old when she wowed the 50 or so judges on September 2003 at the Best New Talent Awards in Los Angeles at the Century Plaza Hotel. Out of hundreds of contestants, she handily won two separate categories, Best Contemporary Pop Singer and Best Child Broadway Performer.
Si Pilita Corrales ang discoverer ni Martha Joy. Nakasama ng beteranang singer si Martha Joy sa concert nito sa Toronto in 2004. Si Pilita na rin ang nagkumbinsi sa kanya at sa mommy niya na umuwi ng Pilipinas. Nang makarating dito, nagkaroon ang batang singer ng sariling album sa Viva Records at may contract siya ng three years.
Martha Joy can sing in various languages including English, French, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese and Tagalog.
All-original ang 15 cuts ng self-titled debut album ni Martha Joy: "The Right Moment," "Only My Heart," "Broken," "Holding On To A Dream," a duet with Jimmy Marquez, another Viva Records artist; "I Love The Sunshine," "That's How It Has To Be," "All of A Sudden," "Pagka't Mahal Pa Rin Kita," "This Special Night," "Just Exactly Like We Planned," "Maybe," "Nothing More To Say," "Do You Think of Me" and "Laging Ikaw."
Biniro si Martha Joy, na with her height and skin color, bakit hindi siya nag-join ng Bb. Pilipinas beauty pageant?
"Maybe next year, I still need to be in good shape and if I will be given the chance to join."