Tanya Joanne Carter was born in Belize City, Belize and being of English, African, Indian and Mexican descent she was born a unique beauty. From the tender age of two, Ms. Carter has been belting out notes and rhymes, though sometimes unintelligible. At the budding age of five, she was performing on stage with her church choir, as most musical talents start out, but in true Tanya Carter fashion it was impossible to not take center stage, especially now when it was obvious that she was made for it. After commandeering the choir as her own, it was clear to everyone that this talent must be nurtured, and so it was.
While children her age were listening to “The Wheels on The Bus”, Mr. & Mrs. Carter were introducing their prodigy to ‘Burning Spear’, ‘Dennis Brown’, ‘Earth, Wind and Fire’, ‘Bob Marley’, ‘Tina Marie’ and ‘Roberta Flack’, just to name a few. With an impressive musical background, Tanya
was able to appreciate, replicate and meld many disparate genres at a very young age. With an aim to further developing Tanya’s musical abilities she was enrolled in Grace Primary School, the city’s foremost leader in the arts, where she became an immediate fixture in the school choir as a lead
soprano. The choir went on to win countless awards and competitions, and Tanya had become a true student of the arts!
The Wonder Years
Upon graduation, Tanya attended Edward P. York High School where she would, of course, go on to join and helm their choir. Later, she became interested in and joined a musical troupe called “Via Vocalate” where she mastered Operatic and Classical songs in different languages. A few years
later, Tanya took office at the Music Industry Association of Belize (MIAB) as a Co-ordinator. Around the same time she became an integral part of the Belize Music Agency (BMA) where she was introduced to Jazz and The Blues. She developed a genuine love and appreciation for these genres and later incorporated them into her own style of music. After her impressive stint at MIAB, she was recruited as a Program Coordinator at the National Institute of Culture and History (NICH) where she directed a number of successful youth programs.
She then went on to headline Mexican Music Festivals in Veracruz, Chiapas, Tabasco and other provinces while on tour with BMA. Upon her
return she toured on the Lord Rhaburn Jazz Festival throughout Belize and
received the Lord Rhaburn award for Outstanding Artist. She was later selected as a lead in Frankie Reneau’s “We are Belize” project (2006) where she impressed with “Welcome to Belize”. Around this time, she also taught vocal courses at high school and to under-privileged kids. She even turned heads with her foray into Drama when she guest-starred in, and was demanded back to reprise her role, and this time headline, Belize’s wildly popular original series ‘No Matta Wat’ as fan-favorite, Cassandra!
The Next Step
Tanya has kept busy and opened for International Artists such as ‘Etana’, ‘Lexxus’, ‘Luciano’, ‘Morgan Heritage’, ‘Shyne’ and ‘Omarion’ and has headlined Belizean Concerts in Utah, New York, and California. From Sound Fests to Jazz Festivals both at home and in the USA, she reveled in the opportunity and thought it a privilege to showcase her talent to the world. Her hits like ‘Hero’, ‘Daydreaming’, I AM BELIZE’, and ‘Spotlight’
enjoy regular airtime on the radio in Belize, Los Angeles, Africa, Mexico, Jamaica and peaked at number 3 in Lithuania, with ‘Vincas’.
More recently, 2010-2011 was a big year for Tanya as she wrote, produced and sang one of Belize’s biggest hits to date, “I AM BELIZE”, which became a country-wide slogan and anthem with the backing of the Belizean Government. ‘I AM BELIZE’ was featured on her Debut Album,
Daydreaming (2011), which quickly went on to become one of the best-selling albums in Belize. The critically acclaimed album also featured her hit, ‘Belizean Pride’ which was the 2010-2011 Soca Song of the Year. Naturally, she would go on to win the ‘Best Female Vocalist of the Year’ at
the Belize Music Awards three years in a row, clinching it again in 2012. To round things out, Tanya collaborated with Def Jam recording artist ‘Shyne’ on ‘Over the Sun’. Having proven herself not only as a beautiful vocalist but an extremely talented producer and song writer, Tanya
was then requested by the First Lady of Belize to craft an inspirational song for children with special needs that then became the aptly titled ‘The Inspiration Song.’ She continues to prove herself as Belize’s premier musical talent.
Tanya continues to write, perform and record her original music and is currently hard at work on her second studio album and upcoming music videos. With her new album she is aiming for an international release and a greater commercial appeal. Her new hit singles ‘Hocus Pocus’ and
‘Spotlight’ showcase her versatility and mastery and give a taste of things to come. Though blessed with many talents ranging from drama to comedy, it is her singing that shines through from her soul, which says a lot both about her singing as well as her genuine star power. Her passion for music will never die, and she will be singing until the end, but this is just the beginning!