OCEAN SPRINGS, MS (WLOX) - She's a small town girl with big time dreams, and this 12 year old singer-songwriter from Ocean Springs is finding opportunity with her talents. She's even got a celebrity-sounding name: Jade Sanders.
"Y'all don't know me, I'm from a small town in Mississippi," sang the young girl with the pretty smile.
Chances are good you don't know Jade Sanders, not yet anyway. As a sixth grader, she got a special invite to the high school talent show and wowed the crowd.
"When I was done, everybody clapped for me. And when I was playing, I saw somebody out in the audience take out their phone, and they started waving it. That was cool," Jade said.
"She's just a natural," said Tim Alamsha, who founded "Rock U2" Music Academy in Ocean Springs. He's working with the young singer-songwriter.
"She came in, took her guitar out and started playing. And it was clear that listening to her songs and performance that she's been blessed with abilities beyond her years," Alamsha said.
He's helping her copyright the 40 songs she's already written and has a music video in the works. You'd expect this up and coming country talent might mention Taylor Swift or Carrie Underwood as idols.
Well, you'd be wrong.
"I like Patsy Cline, Loretta Lynn and Dolly Parton," Jade said.
While she may look up to those legends, it's a much younger crowd that will drive Jade Sanders career.
"If you look at all the stars on the Disney Channel who are recording, Miley Cyrus, Selena Gomez. It's because 6 to 13 year old girls want to see other children their age doing what they would like to do," said Alamsha.
Her mom remembers the very first song Jade wrote.
"She's like mom and dad listen, listen to this song I wrote, first song. We both, our mouths fell open! My husband said, where'd you learn that song? I know you didn't write it. We were just blown away," said Leslie Sanders.
Others may soon experience that same reaction. Her dream is simple.
"To share my music with the world," she said, fighting back a shy smile.
Jade Sanders will soon be shooting a music video in downtown Ocean Springs. And there's a call for extras needed to appear in that video shoot.
Rock U2 Music Academy is hosting a registration day on Saturday, July 30th from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m.
There's a $10 charge to register and minors must have a parent present.