PLAY LOUD with
Follow along for an exclusive interview series with our campaign stars as we discuss everything from music, creativity, to identity and self-love.
Tune in, get inspired, and turn up the volume!
Q. Can you take us through your journey to becoming a musician and when you knew it was something you wanted to do?
A. I actually started writing songs when I was six or seven years old. Living and growing up in L.A., I had a lot of opportunities and I always grew up with music around the house and my family is very music-oriented. Actually, funny story, my dad said I wrote the best songs on the toilet, which was so random! I would just perform them with my family and my friends and grandparents, and then I got into musical theater and that really brought out my passion for performing, acting, singing. I could really become myself and be myself.
Q. Do you remember when you went from little concerts with your family to singing in front of a real audience and what that felt like?
A. When I was younger, performing for my family just in the house, I was able to be confident and free and to move how I wanted. It was just a free space. I kind of took that and moved it on to when I am performing in front of big audiences. And luckily when I get on stage, all the nerves go away and I'm just like, “This is it. This is what I want.” It's awesome.
Q. How do you decide what to wear for a live performance?
A. I think confidence and feeling good is the most important thing. You could wear sweat pants on stage. You can literally wear whatever you want, as long as you feel good in it. I just wear sneakers, jeans, and a really cute top with a jacket or something. Keep it chill.
Q. Was it stressful to audition when you were just a kid?
A. Living in L.A. and constantly being surrounded by so many older people, it was definitely hard because I was very much forced to grow up super fast. I always felt like I was older than the people surrounding me. I had to learn really quickly to take direction in certain ways and to be rejected. There are some casting directors who won’t even give you the time of day, and you just have to walk out with a positive attitude and think of the positive behind it all. It definitely was hard, and I mean, it still is hard but I really loved it.
Q. Social media can be a double-edged sword for your confidence. Can you talk a little bit about how you deal with that?
A. It's crazy because the whole world now is based off of comments and likes and wondering, "Are they going to repost it? What are they posting? What do they like? Are they going to write about it?” I'm just kind of putting it out there for people to hear. And if they love it, they love it, if they don't, they don't. No matter what, some people are going to be negative in your life. I'm just grateful for all the positive things people have said about my stuff. I'm just trying to make the best out of it.
Q. What inspires you when you’re writing?
A. When it comes to my music, I'm just taking stuff that comes from my heart and putting it out there, hoping that it can help someone heal from a heartbreak, or help somebody have a better day. When I write music, I want to tell a story. I want to inspire people and I want to help people. I want everything to be so honest and real. I think both are in consideration when I am writing.
Q. You were involved in some anti-bullying work in the past. Why was that important to you?
A. In elementary school and middle school, I actually was bullied, and I watched a lot of my friends get bullied. So many teens go through it, and especially cyberbullying now. I wanted to bring awareness to that because I think it's so important to always be kind. You have no idea what someone else is going through. I learned from all the people who bullied me and treated me poorly. So I said to myself, "You know what? I need to bring awareness to this and do what I can to put it out there, so people realize." I got so many messages from people who had seen the videos played in their school. People would DM me and tell me, "Hey, I've been bullying people for a year now in middle school and this video really changed my mind." And that's all I wanted to do, to create awareness for something that I think is really important, especially nowadays.
Q. Which of your songs have been the most personal for you?
A. They all are personal, but I think “Oldest Teenager” was a super personal one for me. I just poured all my words in that song, and that's exactly how I felt. I've felt like I've been 21 forever, since I was 13. I feel like the oldest teenager I know. And it was relatable to everybody, which is really cool.
Q. What's the best advice you've ever gotten?
A. Stay true to yourself in everything you do. Be honest with what you're doing. There have been many times in my life where I was trying to portray a person that I was not. Another piece of advice that I got that changed my perspective was to never let the haters get to you. I used to be that person who would think constantly, “What does he think about me? Do they hate the way I look? Why does that one person out of thousands of comments hate my song?” And I finally learned to get over that. I was just like, you know what? I don't care. If you like it, you like it. You don't, you don't. I learned that my opinion is the only one that really truly matters.
Q. What’s something you love about yourself that you would never want to change?
A. I’d never want to change how positive I am. I'm always happy. I'm always smiling. I always try and look at the positive in everything, because there's no point in putting that negative energy out there. When people are like, "I'm not going to get it” or "I can’t do something", you're putting that energy out there. Look in the mirror and tell yourself you're going to get that job. You have to think positively because it's the only way to go. That's something about myself that I've always loved because I've been surrounded by so many people who think so negatively. It's something I'll never change for sure.
Q. You've talked about your music being for driving around and screaming the lyrics. Can you talk about what that feels like and why you made a soundtrack for that?
A. My latest single, “Newbury Park”, I think is the definition of a song you can scream in your car. I wrote that song to empower women and to talk about how poorly men can treat you in relationships. I was just so blinded by this guy and was so in love with him. I wasn’t even close to dating him, but I just felt this attachment to him. And he treated me like shit and I let him, over and over again. Then finally I realized, I know my worth. And the line in the song, "fuck you for wasting my love" speaks to that. It’s not like “I hate you,” it's more like... “You know what? Fuck you for wasting my love, you ruined it”, you know? I'm so powerful and I'm a woman and I'm beautiful. That is so important that I want people to scream that in their car. I want people to dance in their room and just enjoy it. After hearing the song, I want them to realize, "You know what? I am a bad bitch. I'm a beautiful person. And he doesn't deserve me." That's why I wrote this song.
Q. What’s your best summer memory?
A. My best summer memories are beach drives with my best friend. We’d get our favorite foods and drinks and go watch the sun set. It’s this feeling of being free. You don’t have school, you don’t have worries, you’re doing what you love with your friends: dancing to music, screaming your heart out. Those are the moments you’ll never forget.
Q. Why are your female friendships important?
A. Female relationships are so important to me because I grew up as an only child. So if you're my best friend, you're my sister. You're my family. It’s so good to have people that are going to be there for you and love you through everything. To laugh with you, cry with you, have fun with you, and be there when you’re going through breakups, when you get married, when you have kids. That girl code is so important to me. I've had the same best friends for probably eight years now. My friends are everything to me.