Monday, June 2, 2008
Jaya ("The Fillipina Queen of Soul")
While she is quite well-known in the Philippines, in the United States during the late '80s\early '90s, she was well-known as a freestyle\dance music singer & becoming the first Filipino recording artist to chart in the United States.
She is the daughter of singer & comedian Elizabeth Ramsey and Reynaldo Kagahastian. Her parents separated when she was a young girl and her father migrated to the United States where he now resides in Canada.
Jaya first started out in show business when she was 10 years old as a backup dancer for her mother. She was also the undefeated champion while singing on the GMA Network noontime variety show "Student Canteen" and later joined the Opera House.
In 1982, Jaya began performing under the name "Louise Ramsey". In 1985, she moved to the United States with her mother where they lived in different cities in California. She attended John Marshall High School in Los Angeles, California.
After completing high school, Jaya ran away from home and moved to New York with a friend where she landed a job as a backup vocalist for freestyle\dance music singer Stevie B's group of musicians.
After spending a year in New York, Jaya moved to Florida where she was given the opportunity to complete an album that had already been started by another artist. In February of 1989, she signed a record deal with LMR Records.
It also peaked at #25 on Billboard's Hot Dance Music\Maxi-Singles Sales chart and was a Top 20 hit on dance-pop radio stations in large area markets such as New York City , San Francisco, Los Angeles and Chicago.
The success of the single gave Jaya the opportunity to work across the United States with artists such as Milli Vanilli, James Ingram, the Jets and MC Hammer.
During that same year, Jaya married musician Andrew Buffington (whom she met in 1995). They divorced after three years of marriage. In 1999, she performed in the musical "Rama at Sita" and also released her fifth studio album "Honesty."
She was also part of the Kaya Natin Ito single CD which was a project that helped the victims of the tropical storm Ondoy. From October 2009 to March of 2010, she was the host of a Philippine game show called "BandaOke."
In March of 2010, Jaya starred in her first television soap opera on the GMA Network series "Diva" and was also the main presenter of the GMA-7 variety show "Party Pilipinas." Her other television credits include Philippine shows such as "Biritera," "Dwarfina," "Bantatay" and "Kaya ng Powers."
In September of 2010, she won the award for "Best Female Vocal Performance" at the 23rd Awit Awards for the song "Hiding Inside Myself."
These days, Jaya continues to be an active performer in music & television in the Philippines. She is also a married mother of two children as well.
To see Jaya's Facebook page, go to:
To follow Jaya on Twitter, go to:
To see the music video for "Shadow Love," go to:
To see a fan-made video for "If You Leave Me Now," go to:
To see a fan-made video for "One Kiss Per Minute," go to:
To see a fan-made video for "You Lift Me Up," go to:
To see the music video for "Hiding Inside Myself," go to:
[updated on September 22, 2017]