Alex G SHOWING UP
Issue no. 28 | July 2017
CONTENTS Issue #28 | July 2017
LET'S TALK BY GABBY F
TOBI MUST HAVES
JAE'LYN AYAUNA GODOY
BEAUTY BY BECCA
TEENAGER RAISED BY THE INTERNET
61. SWIMSUIT MAGIC WITH LOLA CHEL
EDITOR'S NOTE Â Issue #28
Thanks for reading issue #28! There isn't much to say other then this issue is jam packed with awesome interviews, fashion and music! I am honored to have the opportunity to interview one of my favorite independent artist, Alex G. She is a Colorado raised singer and songwriter who now, at the age of 25, has her own label and just brought her first house. We also have fashion from Tobi, the July playlist plus more awesome interviews jam packed into this issue!Â
Raye Reign Founder, Editor in Chief firstname.lastname@example.org
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Editor in Chief & Founder 'Let's Talk' Writer 'Beauty by Becca' Writer 'Teenager Raised by the Internet' Writer PR Graphic Design All Alex G Photos Credit Editor Notes Photo Credit Jae'Lyn Ayauna Godoy Photo Credit Sydney Ray Photo Credit Nancy Fifita Photo Credit Jet Jurgensmeyer Photo Credit Lala Chel Photo Credit Swimwear Makeup Hair Dylan Playfair Photo Credit Publishing Company Distributing Companies
Raye Reign Gabby Fabrizio Rebecca Fenemore Niamh Duffy Omina Unlimited LLC Canva Alex G C. Cassandra Michael Bezjian Ja'Dee Murphy Tamara Tihanyi Riker Brothers Photography Eric Kinney of E Kinney Media + Eyesso Foto Holidolls Swimgerie Iy Cande Holidolls + Iy Cande Bobby Quillard Gold Crwn Books Joomag and Issuu
Gold Crwn Magazine is published by Gold Crwn Books Publishing. All rights reserved. American Copyright 2017 by Gold Crwn Books Publishing. No part of this magazine may be reproduced in any manner without the permission from the publisher.
HAPPINESS WRITTEN BY RAYE REIGN (n) It's something that we often fake. Something we desire. Something that is for everyone. A serious drug. Addicting. Passionate. Tears. A stare or an upward twist of the face. Fate. A lesson. Life. Your soul mate. Freedom. Real Freedom. A breath of fresh air. You. Being You. That is happiness. Do you have it?
SYDNEY RAY How did you get started in this music business ?
song and feel inspired or interested, but my biggest influences are definitely Sara Bareilles and P!nk.
It all started with a talent convention (IMTA) that I went to in 2015. From there it sent me on this path of traveling back and forth to Nashville to What do you want people to get from your music? meet people in the industry, to write songs, and to record and produce songs. I want people who are feeling vulnerable and afraid to feel strong and empowered. 'Big' is a very inspiring and powerful song that has Who is SydneyRay in one sentence? a Sara Bareilles vibe to it. Where did you pull SydneyRay is strong and brave girl with a passion inspiration from for that song? for music and desire to empower others. What is your advice to new artist? I wrote ‘Big’ with songwriters Kayliann and Doug Lowe who shared my vision of writing about carpe My advice for new artists is to enjoy the journey. diem and living every moment to the “max”. The The biggest lesson I’ve learned over the past few concept of the song and the title came from songs years is that it’s not a matter of where this career like “I Lived” by One Republic and “Brave” by Sara takes me but a matter of what I take from this Bareiles. career. What artist out now inspires you?
Follow Sydney on Instagram @sydneyray03
I am so in love with music that I can listen to any
Go stream her two singles 'Big' and 'Outkast'.
TOBI MUST HAVES Our friends at Tobi sent us some goodies that we just had to share. Tobi is a California based online shop that has everything you could ever want to wear. We picked out some pieces to help you end your summer right!
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JET JURGENSMEYER How did you get into the acting business?
How can more people help?
My parents owned a place in Nashville and we did dinner shows there. I started out in that show when I was 4 years old. I ended up getting an agent in Nashville, and I started doing commercials and music videos. Then I went on to LA and got an agent and a manger there. I have been really blessed to be doing what I love and have a great group of people around me.
Thank you so much for asking that! I am working to raise $10,000 for the Ryan Seacrest Foundation to help build more of these studios in Children’s Hospitals around the country. If anyone would like to donate they can go to https://www.razoo.com/ story/Jetjurgensmeyer We would really appreciate the support. Any donation helps out so much!!!
What advice do you have for new young actors? How was it working with Sabrina Carpenter and Sofia Carson? Make sure you are doing it for the right reasons. Make sure you want to do it because it’s fun and It was amazing working with Sabrina and Sofia! I something you love. I would also tell any young love both of them and look up to them like older actor to read a lot and watch lots of movies. You sisters. All of the cast became really close, and we can learn so much on your own by thinking about all get together whenever we can. We all consider the actors and characters. You always need to have each other family! your lines memorized and be prepared for anything. Sometimes you might get to set and they Did you have anything in common with your throw something new at you (which happens more character? than you think). If you are really prepared and comfortable with your script, it won’t be so hard I am actually like my character Bobby in a lot of to make the changes. ways. I do like to cook like my character does. My cousin is a Chef, so I learn a lot from him. We will How did it feel when you traveled to these talk sports and cook. I like to try different things. different hospitals to help out the RS Foundation? You are going to be a character voice in a Hey I am still traveling to all of the Seacrest Studios Arnold movie. That is a huge deal since the TV over the rest of the summer. It is really amazing to show was loved by so many. How do you feel about get to go and visit with the kids and families at the that opportunity? hospitals. They are all going through some really tough times. I really enjoy going in and talking with I was totally thrilled when I got the part in “Hey them, answering questions and playing some Arnold: The Jungle Movie”. I play Stinky Peterson. music for them. It’s a feeling that I can’t even It is really cool to get to meet all of the other actors describe. I feel like just for a little while, I may be and be part of the project (which I am really excited helping get their mind off of what they are going for). This series started over 20 years ago, so being through. I’m not sure they realize how much it included in the movie now is a pretty big deal for means to me to able to come and visit with them! me.
JUly PLAYLIST 1.. Sorry not sorry by Demi Lovato 2. I can't breathe by Bea Miller 3. Most Girls by Hailee Steinfeld 4. We in here by Cerradi 5. Figures by Jesse Reyez 6. Fetish by Selena Gomez 7. July by Alexi Blue 8. Box by Deetranada
FEATURED MUSIC VIDEO
PREMIERING ON 7/21 AFTER DESCENDANTS 2!
Written by Gabby Fabrizio
I thought foryou my will feature thisthe month that I’d do As some of know, last week was something a little bit different than normal, I Mental Health Awareness Week, something thought I’d strip it all down, not focus on which I think is incredible because it isanything raising in particular and simply just have a chat with and awareness of such an amazing cause. So, I to you guys. wanted to start off my feature this month by saying PLEASE, please, continue all year, the We are now in July 2017, 7 months into the amazing forfilled Mental after this and 2017support has been withHealth a lot of horrific events. and A lotcontinue of events to thatraise for some of us, will week, awareness of leaveaterrible mentalinand physical damage for such crucial topic a modern society. Also, many years to come. A lot of events that shook the be there for your friends, family, strangers world. A lot events that But be there forofeveryone. A impacted few kind society. words can while the world has really been testing us only 7 go a long way, and with that thought in mind, months into 2017, the horrific events have seen a it brings response me to today’s article. beautiful from society. Something which local communities should be proud of. Events Ifilled knowwith justterror how with far athe fewintention kind actions can go, of destroying us, that’s destroying our compiled moral, destroying our and why I have a list of small community spirit, only saw a positive and gestures you can do to help improve admirable response from society. someones day drastically. So why not go and
do. Afterthe times of-trouble, some ofjust them work 30 Spread love tell someone how much hourlove shiftsthem. to helpNot society, to save lives, aunty to perform you spoken to your in a a service to their country. And they deserve while? Ring her up and tell her just how much recognition. It doesn’t take a lot to simply you love her!
acknowledge someone. Take a moment, have you ever seen a member of the emergency services Help the lessyour fortunate - it’s quite really walking down local street, your localsad shopping that don’t have go farintogeneral? see people less mall,we or just out andto about The next time you do,than how about you go up show a little fortunate us, but you canand help them. If bit of gratitude to them. Go sat up outside and simply just you see a homeless person a shop, thank them. A simple, “Hello, thank you for go inside and buy them a meal deal! everything you are doing” will go so far with a member of the emergency service. I know Smile at people - such a simple one, but a someone who has been a first response at one of little smileterror to someone really doesthat go asaving long the recent attacks, and he said way. Especially if it is the older generation, lives is a feeling that is at indescribable, it is one of who sometimes feel a little bit uncomfortable the most rewarding jobs. He then went on to say, that he experienced around the ‘youth’.a different feeling of reward recently, when people started to thank him. He isn’t inup it your for theseat recognition, isn’t in it for the Give - sat onhe a crowded tube? thanks, but he said that when just one person came bus? train? Can you see someone who up to him and thanked him and gave him a hug, his deserves the seat more than you? Give up entire year was made. So, let’s do the RIGHT thing, your for a person I can’t stress how show seat appreciation for ourand emergency services.
complete just one of these small gestures It really is times of trouble when you see just how today, and improvesomeone's day amazing the human race is. In a time of regular positively! Remember, likegrievance normal, ifand youloss do terror attacks that leave any of these the gestures I’d race love to know! Send everywhere, human responds with much that will make their day so much better. me a short private message tweet You to There is undoubtedly a lot of hatred in our beautiful nothing of medal worthy or responses. have the emergency services all over the world, Give world,abut positive really want @gabbyfabrizio and let’s chat! tip something - If you go out for awhich meal,I remember these men and women, these fathers and mothers, those to talk people about right the recent increase in whonow areisserving you! They’ve these brothers and sister, these humans, sacrifice recognition for Mental Health. This is something Small Gestures to do to impact someones probably been in there for hours already theirpositively fears, put them to the back of their minds and waiting which I am so so sogive so passionate about, day onsopeople, them a little bitand of aI risk their lives in order to save others. They are fully believe that we are the generation to change tip just to make their day brighter. people who deserved to be treasured, because the common perceptions and stigma surrounding Hold the door openNot foronly someone - we aretake all Mental Health. I have seen so many brave people their jobs take guts. guts, but they guilty of it, just walking through and Surprise Notes -up Leave for your family pure bravery. To enter yourself intoaadoor situation recently opening aboutnotes their experiences with being oblivious to those around us. Try and friends around their house, workplace, when you know you may not return with the Mental Health to either get help or to share their intention the of helping others,for is really something story with out people, andthem I honestly that is holding door open someone and bags etc just to show howthink much you that should be inspiring everyone in society. Our love something watch the gratitude spread across their face! them.which takes so much strength and is so lives are trusted in the hands of doctors, people who have medically trained most of their Give a compliment - Dofor you like that lives, girls but imagine the pressure they are put under every handbag in front of you? Or really love that time they enter into a situation where they know boy’s sat on the train? Tell them. We that if hoody they don’t do one small thing right, they get scared talkpatient. to people, being could looseto their Just but takeyou’re a moment to positive about them, what’s notKeeping to love?! imagine that immense pressure. cool, remembering their education, and performing Manners - Manners, manners, manners! immaculately is what they, thankfully, And Always remember to say ‘please’ anddo. ‘thank again,tothat is something praised. you’ a person, and ifwhich you should have tobeget past Emergency services and the health care workers, someone, a quick ‘sorry’ will make the do not get enough recognition. They don’t get situation 10x happier for everyone. praised or acknowledged as much as they should
important. All of us sharing our stories and sharing our you experiences givesgestures the world more Do have any small that you understanding, more insight, and then the world have done for someone? Please let us can be more accepting of Mental Health. To know, we’d love to hear you’ve been everyone who suffers withhow Mental Health, keep helping people! going. I’m here for you, my dms are ALWAYS open (@gabbyfabrizio) and I am always willing to speak to someone foron 5 these minutes, 5 hours, 5 days Talk to Gabby social networks: whatever that person needs, whatever support that person needs, I am there. And, the world is Twitter: @gabbyfabrizio here for you @gabbyfabrizio too, when you are ready to open up, Instagram: don’t be scared, let’s make the change we want in Official Website: gabbyfabrizio.com/ the world.
NANCY FIFITA Nancy is known for her work on Jane the Virgin and Totally T.V. She is also a trained singer, song writer, dancer and model. Nancy has a passion for entertaining and is currently pursuing her dreams.
What's your favorite thing about being on set? It was a fun Carnival set and I got to go on a lot of the rides and eat carnival food. Your resume also says you are a dancer? What is your favorite thing about the dance world?
What was your first love, music or acting? Dancing is a fun way for me to tell the story or I'd have to say both because I love to sing and the meaning of the song. I never get tired of act and I love it when I can combine the 2 dancing, it's always a fun way to relax and get together. I grew up watching movies and TV turnt up. shows that infused a lot of music like Grease, Hairspray, Annie, High School Musical, Why is it important to be a triple threat like Backstage, & Austin & Alley. I love music and yourself? acting. Being able to pursue all my talents in acting, What drew you to music ? singing, songwriting, dancing and modeling is so much fun because I'm not limited to one 2015 was a rough year for our family. We lost aspect. a lot of our loved ones including my grandfather & my 1st cousin. I turned to music What advice would you give to new actresses as my outlet for healing. It was hard to talk your age? about all the loved ones I lost but it was easy for me to put my feelings in a song & sing it. Starting young in this industry is fun and hard Music helped the healing process a lot. at the same time. But my advice would be to work hard at what you love doing and to have What artist inspires you? fun doing what you love to do. Hard work will pay off in time but having fun will keep things Whitney Houston & Beyonce are my big happy for you so you don't get burnt out. Just musical influences. enjoy the journey! How has it been, being such a young actress Follow Nancy on social media on a big show like Jane The Virgin? Twitter /NancyFifita02 Youtube /FancyNancy Fifita Jane the Virgin was a fun experience.
NEW SINGLE 'JULY'
OUT NOW EVERYWHERE
BEAUTY BY BECCA July Topic 'Music' Written by Rebbeca Fenemore
It is safe to say that music means the world to me. I know some people get irritated at the fact I am always listening to music basically 24/7 but I canâ€™t help it. I need it in my life. Music and my dance life coincide with each other and they are deeply imprinted in my heart..
we are sad it makes us cry and thatâ€™s the beauty of music.
Having danced in a range of styles all my life I have learnt to appreciate and celebrate the variety of genres of music from classical to R&B. Each make you dance or feel a different way which II often think about how people spend their day I think is an extremely powerful and incredible without music because for me, music is thing. something I need and love. It keeps me feeling alive. With music you are never alone. It has When I was younger I had singing lessons and always helped me when I have had down piano lessons which I enjoyed so much, however moments or when I am feeling extremely it just got too expensive with dancing as well. I stressed or anxious. would love to get back into both of them as they are definitely a passion of mine! Music gives you the chance to express yourself and your feelings. It is such a powerful thing in this world. It makes you feel more than you know. If it makes us happy it gives us goosebumps, when Follow Becca on Twitter @rebeccafenemore
JAE'LYN AYAUNA GODOY How did you get started?
would love to guest star in shows like Blackish, Shameless or Queen Sugar where teens have My first acting job was work in on the set of 'Til realistic and diverse story line. From Zoe's Death at the age of 5. I had a good time and I told (Blackish) new adventures in college to Debbie's my mother that I wanted to continue acting. (Shameless) life as a teen mother to Micah's (Queen Sugar) run in with law enforcement; these are all How was it playing on ‘Bella and the Bulldogs? real topics that teenagers my age are facing every day. I would love to be a part of a storyline that Being on Bella and the Bulldogs was amazing makes an impact. because I felt like I was in my element portraying a pageant contestant. I also enjoyed being around Which actress inspires you the most and why? a cast that was my age. It was really great meeting people and getting advice on my craft. It is sort of a tie. The actresses that inspires me the most are Scarlett Johansson and Issa Rae. Lets talk ‘Girl Meets World’. How was it being on Scarlet Johansson has a lot of variety and I love set there? her intensity. I am inspired by Issa Rae because I feel like she represents who I am. A young, black Working on Girl Meets World was surreal because woman trying to make it without compromising my mom and I binge watched a season of Boy herself. Meets World prior to going. I feel on love with Topanga's character and it was a pleasure to meet in her in person . How did you get into pageants? Why do you think that show had such a strong I also started pageants when I was 5-years-old. My impact on teens? mother saw an ad about the Most Beauty Baby Pageant and she entered me. I wound up winning I believe Girl Meets World had a strong impact on seven out of nine trophies, including Most teens because the actors and their roles were Beautiful Baby Overall. I competed off and over relatable and the show touched on topics that the years but I Have started competing regularly teens my age are actually facing. again. What has been your favorite role to play so far?
What is your advice to new pageant girls?
My favorite role this far was when I was cast as a Volleyball Princess as a part of the Disney, Dream Big campaign. In the commercial, I get to sing and play volleyball. These are two of my favorite things. As a bonus, I got to be a part of one of my favorite Disney movies, Tangled.
My advice to new pageant girls is to believe in yourself and stay focused on your dreams. You may not come in first in every pageant that you compete in but as long as you do your best, you are a winner!
What is your dream role? You can follow Jae'Lyn here: My dream role would be a role that either in a Facebook / ayauna.godoy/ movie or a recurring role on a television show. I Instagram / iamayaunarose
'POWER' MUSIC VIDEO AND SINGLE OUT NOW
DYLAN PLAYFAIR Born in the small town of Fort St. James BC, Canada into a hockey family. His father is a professional hockey coach for the Phoenix coyotes.
Lights and Taylor Kitsch used to play hockey in the same league I was in at the time. He inspired me to move to Vancouver and then Los Angeles. I have not looked back since!
How was it growing up with your dad being a big Dylan will soon be seen in the Disney original NHL coach? movie, "Descendants 2,” which tells the story about the children of some of Disney’s most I loved spending so much time around hockey notorious villains. Dylan plays, 'Gil,' the son of rinks. My dad took my brothers and I to skate as ‘Gaston,' who has inherited some of his father's often as he could. We had to move quite a few wickedness and is now part of the pirate gang. times as kids while he was moving up from minor leagues into the NHL, so our family got to see a Playing Gil was an incredible experience. The set lot of North America. I have lived in Dayton Ohio, was more like a summer dance camp than a movie Kalamazoo Michigan, Saint John New Brunswick, set. We all got along straight away and we've Calgary Alberta, Abbotsford BC, Penticton BC, stayed close to this day. Phoenix Arizona... the list goes on! We met amazing people and grew up in a very athletic Dylan has studied acting in Vancouver and Los house. I loved it. Angeles and is a graduate of Vancouver Acting School. What did you learn from traveling ? Why is education important even in the movie I learnt that people are more alike then different. industry? I learned that you can make friends anywhere in the world with a positive mental attitude and a Education is a process that should never end. I do genuine smile. I learned that people are amazing not want to be friends with the person who decides and culture is a dish best shared with company! they are done learning. That is a part of what makes Also, I learned not to eat undercooked Thai street life exciting. Learning new skills, sharpening old taco stands... especially chicken tacos! ones and expanding your mind are all essential elements to finding success in any career. That is Was hockey your first love before acting? what I would say... also do not eat yellow snow. I dreamt about playing in the NHL before I dreamt about acting. That being said, my passion for acting has always been there. I used to love auditioning for Elementary and High school plays. I think that is where I caught the acting bug! Dylan left hockey to pursue a career in film at the age of 19 after playing Jr. A Hockey in the BCHL. I had a season filled with some concussions and career setbacks. I was 19 and I knew I wanted to act after hockey. I was a big fan of Friday Night
What is your advice to new actors? You will audition for many roles that you will not book. It is important to understand when you do not get a role, it is not a failure, it is a learning opportunity for your next audition. Keep a positive mindset and be a fan of yourself. It is up to you to be proactive with your career and people will appreciate the effort you put in when people aren't watching. Learn you material, watch good actors at work and enjoy the process!
Empire's Gabby Sidibe
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AN INDEPENDENT ARTIST WHO MANAGED TO CREATE HER OWN LABEL AND BUY HER FIRST HOUSE AT THE AGE OF 25.
Let’s talk your first album. Why the title, Growing Up? It’s actually not formally called Growing Up! I have called it that publicly, and was going to make the change official after some management stuff shifted for me, but it never wound up happening! At this point it’s a self-titled album, although I still love what the Growing Up working title represents. This album was really about me trying to figure out who I was while telling some really honest stories about where I was at in regards to love and to my career. I wrote the last track right before the album came out, and I love how different it feels from the rest of it. It does feel like the whole record is just a sort of musical and spiritual “growing up.” And that "growing up” reaches its culmination in Proof. That song was a big turning point in my evolution as an artist, as well as a human being. How was the journey for you when creating that album? I’d be lying if I said it was stress-free. I think, like a lot of things in my life at that point, I started off with expectations that were a bit extreme and a real desire for instant gratification. It was definitely a lesson in patience. With my primary platform at that point being YouTube, I was used to really quick turnarounds, fast growth, and hype. But what I learned making that album was that it’s okay to take my time on work that is personal to me. Good work is work that truly matters beyond just riding the waves of whatever is popular at the time. It matters beyond growing subscribers—it’s art! But it was really fun, and I got to give a lot of input on production and meet a lot of really talented people. How was it to work with Jason Mraz on that project? I loved working with Jason Mraz! When I met him, of course I was pretty starstruck. He was the biggest name I had worked with at the time, and I had listened to his music growing up, and so I was excited to meet him. I was also extremely nervous because I was new to cowriting and I felt so out of my league. But he was so humble, and so willing to create something tailored to me as an artist—
he was easy to write with, and he was so kind. I remember having a long conversation about avocados. Unfortunately the song didn’t go on the album, but maybe you’ll hear it someday. (By the way, his voice in real life is INSANE, and it was surreal singing with him!) You said you did not want to be just a “cute and bubbly girl with good values and a nice voice”. You wanted to be a leader. What made you want to become a leader after your first album? There was a lot that happened all at once in my personal life that created a lot of change in my relationships, spirituality, my view of myself, etc. It really affected my music, my understanding of my career, and my ability to see the responsibility I have as an artist with influence. There was a large exodus of people from my life that was difficult (but so healing!), and it forced me to start looking inward. It was a combination of heart-to-hearts with my best friend Torri, reading Brené Brown’s books, and growing in my understanding of God, that led to my search for meaning and my desire to lead with integrity. My struggle with shame and perfectionism was brought to light, and I realized I needed to confront that. In doing so, I felt really compelled to change everything about the way I presented myself publicly and professionally, and to bring that into unity with my behind-the-scenes self. The change you started to see on screen was pretty much exactly what was changing in my real life in real time. The ‘Share Your Story’ EP was definitely a beautiful project. Why did you decide to pick that concept for the EP? I wanted to turn a new leaf in my career as I was changing in my personal life. And, truthfully, I was just ready to make something that wasn’t all about me. I had also been reading Brené Brown’s work on shame resilience and vulnerability and was applying it to my life—I started seeing the power in speaking our shame and letting ourselves be truly seen and known. Somehow I wanted to connect the two, and one night at like 2am I just had this crazy idea to write songs about other people’s stories.
How was the journey of reading all of your Oh man. I don’t know how we’d compile the crazy submissions? stuff that has happened in my life into just one song —that’s why I’m a songwriter! So I can write about We got in about 1400 stories. I sat down with a all these separate, crazy experiences in my life as group of friends and we read through all of them. they happen. But if someone did try to write a song It took DAYS. But we narrowed it down to a handful about my story, honestly it would probably just be of stories from which I picked five that really called WTF. Ha! resonated with me. It was a bit overwhelming, and when we got all the submissions I had a moment You also offer to write music for people through of, “Oh no, what have I done…” It just felt like such Etsy. I haven't seen any artist use their ability in a huge responsibility to, first of all, read through such an amazing way. Where did that idea come everyone’s hurt and trauma and relationship from and how have the stories affected you ? experiences, etc. as well as to do my best to tell that story through song. But it was made pretty Thank you! 2016 was a difficult year financially for clear through that process that this was a me, and career-wise it wasn’t going super great therapeutic and healing thing for a lot of people. either. I was having a lot of conversations with Our world needs more space for people to share people who I respect, whose careers I’d like to their stories. People are just waiting for an model mine after, asking them how they make a opportunity to do so. A lot of people felt alone, but living simply doing what they love. I had been reading those stories, there was not a single person trained to look at numbers and trends and fads, and who submitted something whose experience to obsess over them, but I was at the point where wasn’t shared by others—usually MANY others. I just wanted to create and write and do things that We are able to recognize our shared humanity in bring me joy. I noticed the only "trend" in the moments like these. careers of people I respect is that they very simply just do what they love. They don’t chase fads. Which was your favorite story to tell? There’s no secret ingredient. They have all just chosen to live an authentic life, and their career I feel like they all were my favorite while I was follows that. writing them. I genuinely loved telling all of them for different reasons. I think the easiest story to So one day I was brainstorming with my creative tell was probably Charlotte, because it felt more partner (who runs a custom poetry business on like a response to her than a retelling of a specific Etsy), and we just thought, Well, if people like story. I wrote that one first, and very quickly. Alena buying custom poetry, I bet they’d be really excited took me the longest to write. We were actually in about buying custom music! I hadn’t heard of the studio already before I wrote the bridge. But anyone doing that before, and it seemed like a great that’s one of my favorites for sure. And I think side business for me since I love sharing other Royston was the most challenging to write, people’s stories through music and they love because I haven’t had to deal with the death of a hearing their stories in song. loved one in that capacity. I wanted to tell the story in a way that was empathic, that honored the pain Why did you feel that it was important for you to and the loss without being too dark, and also learn all of the aspects of the music industry like without being minimizing or trite about his film, social media and collaborating with other experience losing someone he loves. It always artist? takes courage to tell stories that don’t resolve, but I think they’re some of the most important stories That’s really the only way you can survive in this to tell as well. do-it-yourself YouTube culture. I quickly realized I couldn’t wait around for other people to do things If someone wrote a song about your story, what for me, so I learned by watching people I looked would be the title? up to. And then I found I had a talent and an eye for it. As it turns out, I really love doing all of it. It’s
no! What did I do?” It’s a huge responsibility, but it’s also so exciting, and it’s amazing after 4 years of living in random spaces in LA to come here and have a place that isn’t temporary. I am kind of obsessed with decorating and house shopping as well, so this has been a great opportunity for that!
time consuming, certainly, and sometimes I want help, but it’s amazing to not have to wait to get something done because of budget issues or schedule constraints. I think it’s an important thing to learn if you want to succeed in this DIY age and be able to take control of your own career. You posted a photo for mental health awareness month and said that you deal with anxiety yourself. What is your advice to new women fresh on the How do you get through those times and what music scene? would you say to someone with anxiety who doesn't know what to do to get through it? Trust your voice. Use your voice. And protect your voice. By that, I mean your internal, truly-you voice Honestly, THERAPY. Therapy has helped me so much (although your singing voice should probably be with learning how to better cope with my anxiety. used and protected too - ha!). There will be a lot of I realize it is a deep-rooted issue, and it may not be people trying to pigeonhole you, trying to exploit something that ever goes away for me, so I’ve you for your appearance, or trying to push any other learned to prioritize my mental and emotional number of their own personal agendas on you and needs. Self care. I say no to more so I can make room your art. I had to learn that what I had to say was for things that keep me healthy and happy. As Brené enough as is. My art is enough as is. It’s not worth Brown says, “Choose discomfort over resentment.” it to lose yourself and your voice in the hustle. One day, when it inevitably changes or goes away, you It also has been really huge for me to have just one have to think about what you’re going to be left person in my life who I trust with everything, who with. understands and supports me through all of it. And finally, I have had to learn to be kinder to myself. You recently announced your new label ’God Bless Anxiety is not anything to be ashamed about, and My Therapist’. How did that come about and what a lot of us struggle with it—the more we talk about inspired the amazing name? it and get it out in the open, the less we will be afraid to seek help when we need it. I recently started working with a new team. I’ve got a management team, a business management team, At this stage in your life, looking back at the you a creative team, etc. I own a large catalog of music during your first album era , what would you tell that I’ve built over the years, which means I really her? am the head of my own label! So we just decided to reframe and reorganize the work I had done and For one, I’d say, “You shouldn’t be writing this many create a new avenue for the work I’ll be doing horrible songs about the guy you’re dating. He’s moving forward. That was the birth of God Bless gotta go.” Also, I’d tell her to be proud of the work My Therapist Records! she does, that the songs she writes are good, and the work she does is enough. I’d tell her she doesn’t I chose the name because I’ve been going to therapy have to impress anyone. And just because someone for the last 2 years, and it has completely changed has been doing music for a long time doesn’t mean my life. That’s the only way I stay sane enough to they know what is best for her. She doesn’t need continue making music and to keep growing as a more upbeat pop songs on an album to make people person so my art keeps growing as well. Also my like her more. And she doesn’t need to be the next therapist is the absolute best! God bless her. anyone—she just needs to be her. You also managed to buy your first house. How are you loving being a home owner?
Have you been able to take it all in yet? I go in and out of it.
I LOVE IT. But also I have so many moments of, “Oh
Throughout your journey you have had your best friend with you. Why is it important to have that one person you can trust or go to while in the industry?
create space for people to know that wherever they’re at is completely human, and completely okay. The second I try to write an “inspiring song,” it becomes contrived and cliché. I’m really just trying to write an honest, human That’s really the only way, in my opinion, to be a experience. healthy, happy individual. You need to know that there’s someone in your life who has your Social media is a big part of the music business best interest at heart, who loves you no matter now. How do you handle the good and bad of where you’re at, or what you look like, or being popular on social media? whatever! I think everyone needs that in general, but certainly that in this industry is it I’m a pretty private person. Much more private crucial. It is difficult, unfortunately, to know a than I used to be. Everyone does what works for lot of the time if the people you are meeting in them, and they figure it out as they go. For me, I this world are trustworthy, or if they’re just here for a long time used social media to update to try to get something from you. And there will people with absolutely everything that was be days you won’t know if you have what it happening in my life, and it created a lot of takes to just get through the day. That’s why anxiety for me. My relationship with my fans is a having Torri in my life has been so important— lot more personal and meaningful than it used she sees me in those moments and knows what to be, and honestly I think that is in part because I need and how to love me through it. The praise I put up a healthy set of boundaries between me of strangers can only take you so far. You need and my social media presence. Having those someone who is gonna sit face to face with you boundaries has allowed me to be much more when you’re going through a dark time. real with the people who follow and support me, while giving me freedom to not Instagram every Your songs are very inspiring. Why do you other thing I do in the fear of otherwise being think you have been able to inspire so many forgotten. It healed me of the hustle. It has with your music? helped me to be happier, and to be so much more present in my day-to-day life and I don’t really know! I honestly just write music relationships. I just have to have that boundary about things I think are important in my life and there. in the world. My songs became more meaningful when I stopped trying to make them In choosing to live a more private life, my something—I just try to let a song be what it is. experience feels much less like that of a That’s why I think my songs have been much “celebrity.” Because of my decision to do that, I more honest and vulnerable than they’ve been sometimes forget people know who I am. When in the past, and I think honest and vulnerable people walk up to me on the street, it’s less an music tends to inspire without even trying. expectation and more a surprise. It’s allowed me to be more focused on my art and my personal Was that one of your goals with your music? life, and it makes me infinitely more grateful for the people who do appreciate what I do. Inspiration for inspiration’s sake has never been my goal. I think my job as an artist with a Our magazine focuses on bullying and platform is to be a voice that helps amplify our empowering girls to overcome it. Social media shared humanity. I’d love to heal the world, but is a big part of bullying. What is your advice to honestly, if even one person listens to a song those fans who deal with the bad part of social and feels less alone, I think a song has done its media? job. A song doesn’t need to fix anything for anyone or convince them things aren’t as bad as Sigh. I wish I could say that if you just ignore it, it they feel—it just needs to tell the truth and won’t get to you anymore. But it’s been 6
Continued years, and very recently I cried about a comment I got. It’s hard to avoid that. A lot gets foggy on the internet—it’s easy to lose sight of who you are, especially when those mean-spirited comments are speaking to voices and fears that are already inside of your head. While it’s important to not sit too long with those bullies’ voices or let them tell you who you are, it’s okay to be hurt by it. If you try to numb the pain, you’ll numb the joy and the beauty as well. I used to be much more avoidant about the pain it caused me to read cruel comments on the internet. I tried really hard not to care about the negativity, but in trying to detach emotionally from the hurtful comments, I also detached emotionally from the really beautiful, encouraging ones. I have since tried to be more open-hearted, and on the one hand, those mean comments carry a new sting, but on the other hand, when people show love and gratitude and connect to my music, I feel that so much more deeply as well. At the end of the day, I think it comes down to remembering and practicing applying another Brené Brown quote: “If you aren’t also in the arena getting your ass kicked, I’m not interested in your feedback.” Or, as Melissa McCarthy’s character says in Ghostbusters, “It’s really easy to sit there and be the naysayer when you don’t actually do anything.” People on the internet have not earned the right to tell you who you are. It’s easy to throw stones from a safe distance. Let the people who love you tell you who you are. Take time to build relationships of trust and mutual respect. When you have someone in your life who you trust and love, you can be open and honest and brave with them, and you can even cry if you need to. They are the ones to help remind you who you are.
healthy limits and boundaries. Some things do not need to be blasted over the internet, and some things require a lot of trust to share. But I do not need to put on a public face that is different from the one I wear when I go home at the end of the day. I realized people are looking up to me, and what the world needs more of is honesty, humanity, humility. It became a strong value of mine to show up and be seen however I am. That’s the stuff that saves lives, and that helps bring people out of hiding. I want to be a part of making that change in our culture. I look up to people who help me show up as I am, and I hope to be that for others. How does it feel to be this far at such a young age? It feels bizarre. I was reminded recently of, like, “Oh! You’ve actually achieved something here!” when I bought a house. It shocked me and it shocked my friends, and it was this real reminder that things have gone well for me. It feels confusing and exciting. It’s weird. It’s cool, but it’s weird. If someone asked you, how can I get to where you are by the time I'm 25, what would you tell them?
I can’t tell you how to do that. That’s a hard question, because my journey—I was very lucky. A lot of things honestly just fell into place for me. Aside from all that, all I can really say is just put the energy in, learn what you can about your craft, try to work well with other people, and create the best stuff you can. But nothing is a guarantee. I completely recognize my privilege in being given the opportunities I’ve been given, and truth be told, it really isn’t even fair. I know a lot of people who are doing it the way I wish I had done it from the start, who create art they love and who live Why was it important to show the real you to authentically, and I’m further along than they are your fans? (as far as numbers, views, subscribers etc. go). But their careers are the ones I really admire. So I couldn’t be in my integrity and continue living there’s not a formula for this—not for getting (and hiding myself) the way I had been. I was ahead and being happy at the same time. There is learning to show up and be real with people in my of course a game that can be played, and a ladder real-life relationships, and I realized pretty quickly to be climbed, and a road to take to get ahead, but that in order to be an integrated, whole person, it at what cost? I think the best we can do is just was crucial I do that in my relationship with my create work we love and are proud of. supporters as well. Of course, in every context, showing up genuinely and generously requires End
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