What is your bliss?
My bliss entails me doing something that will change the world for the better. I know that sounds kind of corny, but I feel like that’s my calling. That’s what I need to do. I need to engage in something that creates social change, something that positively impacts the lives of people and I want to achieve that first through my online marketing services catering to social entrepreneurs, purpose-driven businesses, non-profits, etc. So, that’s what I’m focusing on at the moment but I also have a huge passion for music and I want to use music to reach out to a lot of people and write about things that are meaningful and can enhance people’s lives in whatever way. And then there’s this other component that I want to focus on: to develop an app that enhances your creativity. My bliss is ever evolving, though.
Could you describe your songwriting process
My songwriting process is kind of chaotic. Songs just come to me whenever and wherever. I’ve actually dreamed of a couple of songs that I’ve written. It’s really strange, because I have dreams of these full-blown songs fully produced and radio ready like they are real songs. Then I wake up and I try to remember the song as much as I can but I usually forget most of it. I do remember snippets, though, so I keep an MP3 recorder near my bed so as I wake up I sing whatever I can remember and then go from there. I also get inspiration from anywhere and everywhere. Lyrics come to me while I’m showering or right as I’m about to go to sleep. Usually not during the day like this. Usually when I’m in a relaxed semi-awake semi-asleep state of mind.
How many songs do you think you’ve written?
Around a hundred songs already. I haven’t gotten around to publishing them and transforming them into actual songs.
Do you have any musicians you’re working with now?
One of my producers is amazing and is signed to Universal. He lives in Canada and he gets my style. We have a great synergy together. I’m actually going to start a go-fund-me project or fundraiser campaign to gather enough funds so I can put out my first EP, which is going to be called “Shades of Light.”
What inspired the title?
The way I see it is that we all have elements of light and dark within us. Generally everyone is a good person but there are elements of darkness and negativity in all of us and we are constantly trying to battle that to stay positive. So the album is a contrast of the light and dark in all of us. It’s a little on the spiritual side as well, even though I’m not religious, I don’t believe in one god but I am a very spiritual person and I wanted to show that in my songs.
What inspired you to get involved with socially conscious businesses?
The older I get the more I realize how we all have this job as humans to help each other out and to create a world where everyone is happy and lives positively and feels good. I feel like it’s our duty to ensure that each and every one of us feels that way and over the years that feeling has become more profound within me and I feel like it’s my time to give back and do something about it. I’m in a position where I can actually make a leap forward and inspire social change and impact people in a positive way.
What are some of the businesses you’re working with doing?
One of my clients creates reusable grocery bags made out of 100% recycled plastics. They are trying to reduce people’s carbon footprint and to make the work a more sustainable place. Another company that I’m working with is a solar energy company here in Santa Cruz. Solar energy is definitely the future and the future is now.
What do you like most about living in Santa Cruz?
I love Santa Cruz because it’s a very small city but everyone is so well connected here and you never run out of things to do. The city is very bubbly and energetic, but it’s very close to the Bay Area and to Sacramento where my family lives. I like that I feel at home here. I feel at peace, but I also feel empowered. There are so many entrepreneurs here making things happen.
What has modeling taught you?
Modeling is something I’ve done for fun and self-expression. With modeling you definitely need to be aware of the image you’re putting out there. You have to represent who you really are and not try to be someone you’re not. Be real. Be yourself. Have fun and let the world see your personality shine through. You see all these artists and singers who are trying to be unique, but they overdo it. They try to be so unique that it becomes like a persona. That’s part of the fun factor. These characters are very intriguing to watch but I feel like there’s a disconnect.
So you prefer an element of realism in your art?
I just want to be myself. It took me a very long time to figure out who I am. I’m feeling more confident in my skin and what I represent and who I want to be.
Who are some of the songwriters you admire?
Lately I’ve been listening to Sia. She just came out with this song “Chandelier.” She’s very inspiring. She’s a 39 year old songwriter who’s written hits for every pop artist you can think of, but her own style is very raw and emotional and it always carries a very strong message. Her new song is about the glamor and glitz of Hollywood life and what it can do to a person, what it can do to a woman. I like that she sends a very positive message out there to people. Everything she does goes beyond the surface. There’s depth and meaning.
Any last thoughts?
I love Santa Cruz because it’s a very small city with the energy of a thousand suns.