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Metal Maiden of the Month for March 2015 is SABRINA VALENTINE CRUZ. Lead vocalist for SEVEN KINGDOMS.

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THE METAL PIT:  You came into the band back in 2009 for the 2nd album. How do you feel you have changed the feel of the band since you joined them? SABRINA:  When I stepped in, there was huge differences. I think with me the band sounds like an entirely new band. Yes we still have the "Seven Kingdoms flare" but it's still VERY different. SK went from Melodic Death Metal, instantly to Power Metal. At first I was extremely afraid that the fans wouldn't like the new sound, but since then they have shown that they have open minds and arms for me. sabrina4Do you feel that in this day and age being a Female vocalist fronting a Metal band is more acceptable now and do you think it has changed for the good or bad? Sometimes I think people forget the great Ladies of the Hair Metal days when it comes to this subject and how much they were loved when they first came on the scene. Heart, Doro and Pat Benitar to name just a few, were making a stand for women long before we even knew there could be an issue with it. Honestly I think the "acceptance" is becoming harder and more common because it's being talked about as if it's a taboo. Music was never set up like G.O.L.F. was (Guys Only Ladies Forbidden). So I honestly feel that it's time for people to get over what "parts" we have and just listen to the bands.         What current Metal bands do you enjoy listening too? Currently I have been doing a "venture through time" studying "Voices" from the 50's to the present, all not limited to just Metal. I have a list of 50 song that I will be posting over the next few months dedicated to my fans that participated in supporting me on Facebook and YouTube. I will be submerged in learning all these songs to the best of my ability not to just sing them, but to build my voice. I've never had an actual "Voice lesson"in my life. However, I am being taught by the best singers that have ever graced this planet. You don't need money to learn, you just have to want to learn. I am currently discovering new bands and projects every week, past and present thanks to my music history lesson. I have listened to almost 500+ songs by many different genres, to list them all would be quite the task, but off the top of my head the most recent bands/voices I have been "marinating" with are: Evergrey, Hailstorm, Avantasia, NightWish, Blind Guardian, Kamelot, Metallica, Dio. Non Metal: Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Elvis Presley, Bette Midler, Linda Ronstadt, and The Eagles. There are quite a few more but you get the picture.   What other current female vocalists do you admire?sabrina6 You may find this intriguing, but I'm not an admirer of specific genders of voices, but rather the Voice. There is a certain sound that someone (male of female) can posses that will make me instantly fall in love. But if I had to choose the female voice that has currently become a favorite with me, I would have to say it would be Floor Jensen. I've studied her 2013 Wacken performance with NightWish for weeks. She captured those songs better than I have ever heard them performed before. Not discrediting the other ladies but as I said before, it's all about the sound and she happens to be my female "ear crush."     When not doing anything related to music or singing what do you for to relax and have fun? I practice doing hair and makeup for my friends an family for Weddings and special events. I clean and rearrange the furniture till I'm content and then I Cook or Bake. I also like to draw, I am not the greatest, but I'm not the worst either.       Your doing guest vocals on the new Metal opera cd of ARTIZAN along with Matt Barlow. How did this come about? Can you give us any details on the music when it will be released? Seven Kingdoms toured with Artizan, Creations End and Widow a few years back. Since then we have kept in contact and Aaron and Kevin have actually filled in for them on guitar and Bass for their last tour. This particular project came to me through the grape vine and I first sent them recommendations for the female roll. Once they considered all the possibilities, they asked me if I was interested. I was taken back and honored to be considered. I am beyond thrilled to be doing my first guest spot with these guys, It is very exciting! I believe it will be out sometime in April.   Where did you get your aspirations to be a Metal singer in this genre? I became interested in Metal when Camden and I began dating. He sat me down and did what we like to call a "crash course" Metal lesson. It wasn't until one night out at Karaoke that he realized that I actually could sing. I never honestly thought I would sing in a band, I just sang for fun.   sabrina1Who is the most influential person that inspired you to become who you are today? I have been blessed to be surrounded by some of the most amazing people on this earth. But I would have to say, Camden. He loves me. He gives me a life that I never thought I would have. Yes there is a struggle to go along with every opportunity but it's worth it. He is someone who gave me a chance and truly saw in me what others didn't and what I don't see myself. He is extremely smart and puts his everything into what he believes in. Nothing can influence you more to following your dreams than surrounding yourself with people who REALLY love and believe in you.           Your bands last cd THE FIRE IS MINE was released in 2012. Is the band working on new music currently? Yes we are hard at work writing the new Seven Kingdoms album. We are going to spend a good amount of time "marinating" with this one before we go to the studio to record it. Good things happen when things have time to marinade.   When you do start recording your next album do you take any different approaches with your vocals?sabrina8 Honestly, I just listen to the music and sing. I follow my intuition and just let the music move me.   If today was the last day on earth what song from THE FIRE IS MINE would you say overall sums up what Seven Kingdoms is all about and why? I would have to say Forever Brave would be the best song to represent Seven Kingdoms. Forever Brave is how we feel about our lives, situations and even our government. We want to be brave to deal with everything that comes our way and just hope that in the end, we get the best because we have given our very best and still continue too. If you weren't singing in a Metal band what would you be doing? Honestly I can't say for sure, it was a road I didn't take. Not even the path we choose ever shows us where it leads. You just have to pray that the one you choose will end up being the right one.           Does the band have any touring plans for 2015? Seven Kingdoms will not tour this year and we won't play very many shows. We are dedicating this year to solid writing and getting our finances back in check. These past few years have cost us all a lot and we have given every penny we could spare to do all the tours and shows that we have done. But when we emerge, it will be well worth the wait. sabrina3band***Photos used by permission of Sabrina Valentine Cruz****