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The Dispatch

The student news site of James Bowie High School

The Dispatch

The student news site of James Bowie High School

The Dispatch

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Sophomore songwriter writes songs and creates a future

Savannah Riggins
When sophomore Camila Diaz first began writing songs as a creative outlet about three months ago, she didn’t anticipate that this would be the start of a lifelong passion.

Amidst the bustling halls one student walks down the hallway, notebook in hand. She stands out like a hidden gem. She crafts unique lyrical compositions in the pages of notebooks, their melodies form an unspoken anthem that resonates with the dreams and struggles of teenage life.

When sophomore Camila Diaz first began writing songs as a creative outlet about three months ago, she didn’t anticipate that this would be the start of a lifelong passion. 

“Songwriting to me is an art form. I want to dedicate my life to my creative endeavors,” Diaz said. “I’ve been around music my entire life so by songwriting I like giving back to my past in a way that is giving to my future too.” 

Diaz had a tough start to songwriting. She doubted her ability, considering other career options several times before finally pushing herself out of her comfort zone and pursuing her passion. 

“I was always tired and then quit because I thought I didn’t have anything to say,” Diaz said. “However in the recent months, I’ve kind of forced myself to learn so I pursue my other passions. For instance, performance. I want to sing my own words and tell my story in a way that makes people have to look and pay attention.”

Diaz takes inspiration from underground artists who express extreme emotions. According to Diaz, they are similar to her, kids who have been ignored and are tired of it.

“I’d say as of right now, as far as impact, it’s mostly angry artists, “Diaz said.” “For instance, MEMI and Corpse Husband. I love noisy music and so the leading people who inspire me are Stray Kids and Ateez. They are Korean groups that produce and write their music which is rare nowadays. I also like deep lyrics and meanings, so Hozier is a definite inspiration.” 

Diaz makes music for the misunderstood. She strives to target a group of people like herself and reach them with her lyrics. 

According to Diaz, the music she makes is for others to have a voice, and to make sure that they have someone who is always rooting for them and empowering them.

“I make music so other angry, queer, Latin, and neuro-divergent people can have a voice that gets them,” Diaz said. “I make music that I needed to hear before I was 13. I make music for my future and my past.”

 Ninth grader, Clover Campbell is an avid supporter of Camila’s drive and passion as an artist. 

“She’s outgoing and persistent,”  Campbell said. “If she has her mind set on something it’s going to happen.”

While Camila is working hard on her songs, her mother Joy Diaz is with her every step of the way. Joy supports her songwriting and believes that Camila’s voice should be shared.

“I absolutely support her songwriting and music dreams,” Joy said. “I believe each generation has a unique voice. And the voice of this generation, of y’all’s generation, is the voice of survivors. You survived a global pandemic. We often think the end of the world is like the movies. But the end of the world as we know it, there’s a song that goes like that, and y’all will shape the new world and sing about it.”

Support is very important to the budding musician. According to Camila, she gets her rugged determination and caring nature from her parents. They consistently provide support for her and have taught her how to channel her emotions into songwriting. This allows her to really connect to her art and make meaningful pieces that connect to her life. 

“I owe everything I have to my parents,” Camila said. “My mother, always the loving gaze, has pushed me to do things I may not think I can do, and my father always instilled a belief of not caring what others think.”

Camila is currently working on 26 unfinished songs, but “Poor Para” in particular is her favorite. This song is very deep and according to Camila, it is one of her favorites because the topic is close to her heart.

“In Poor Para, I tell the story of a girl who is obsessed with a band, and that love inevitably becomes her downfall,” Camila said. “I also wrote a song called Fangs about feeling better about yourself because you are dangerous enough to protect yourself from those who could hurt you. Basically, I write what I feel or need to get out of me.”

Songwriting is a difficult passion that causes constant internal struggles. According to Camila, she has doubted her abilities before and it’s tough determining the difference between critique and criticism. 

“I am my harshest critic. I am my biggest enemy and fear,” Camila said. “I have to learn to build myself up while being honest with myself which is a struggle, but I’m trying.” 

Camila’s ethnic background plays an important role in her music. She takes inspiration from the flow of Caribbean styles and interprets her ethnicity in her lyrics in meaningful ways.

Camila is a bit eclectic, maybe because she is bicultural and bilingual,” Joy said. “Maybe because she has grown up with a mix of influences. I love Caribbean rhythms and her dad loves classical and rock, so the mix makes for some interesting outcomes.”

As of right now, Camila hasn’t released any music but is currently working on new projects.

I haven’t released any of my songs yet but I definitely plan to,” Said Camila. “None are done so I don’t really have a set list, but I will.”

According to “The Washington Post” article: In the Spotify era, many musicians struggle to make a living  90% percent of music artists fail in the industry. This makes it hard to hope for a music career but Camila is undeterred by that startling statistic. She remains confident that despite the odds, she will continue to pursue her passion for songwriting.

I see myself making art and performing for as long as I live,” said Camila. “That may seem naive or foolish, but I’m willing to be foolish if it means I can do what I want.”

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