Wednesday, 1 February 2017

WONDER WOMEN: Lisa Cimorelli on Change, Living Fearlessly, and Carving Your Own Path

Wonder Women is a new series in which I interview the women who inspire me the most. These women are making waves in their careers and changing the world one step at a time - but most importantly, they're doing it for themselves.

A few weeks ago I had the pleasure of chatting to Lisa Cimorelli. Lisa and four of her sisters decided to make a YouTube channel where they uploaded a cover of Party in the USA almost eight years ago. Now, with six Cimorelli sisters in the band in total, they've just come to the end of an incredible year which saw a world tour, a book, and not one but two albums. Read on to discover how the girls got to this (pretty amazing) point whilst staying true to themselves and helping others...

Dani (16), Amy (21), Christina (26), Katherine (24), Lauren (18), Lisa (23) | Credit

Hi Lisa! Do you have a specific role in the band? Can you take us through a typical work day?

Hi! Yes, I handle a lot of the cover prep (recording our covers, mixing, editing, overseeing the video if someone else is editing it, and uploading), setting up collabs/communicating with other YouTubers, and I'm usually in charge of arranging harmonies/vocals in the studio, although sometimes we split that responsibility or switch off. A typical work day usually starts with a band meeting at 11:30. Everyone presents what they've been working on, project updates or ideas, we discuss anything that needs to be gone over and then we do whatever work is needed for the day (signing CDs, filming announcement videos, signing contracts, etc.)

How did you get to where you are now?

Well, leaving our label was a big deal. They were an incredible company and it was a huge honor to work with them, but it didn't turn out to be the right fit for us. We needed to grow on our own. We took on a lot more work, started being proactive and going after every project we wanted to do, and it really helped us find our identity as a band! Now we're at a place where we can pretty much do what we want. It's not as hard as you think. We've learned things are only difficult if you make them out as momentous, impossible tasks in your brain. You have to just buckle down and do the work! Get stuff done and then celebrate!

Was there ever a time when you weren't sure you could get to where you wanted to be? Have you faced any hurdles along the way, and how did you overcome them?

So. Many. Times. So many moments of doubt, extreme fear, questioning... oh goodness... so many bumps in the road. Looking back it was all fear. We always had the power, but we needed to unlock it. None of our goals were impossible, but when you put your fate in other people's hands it can be so foggy and seemingly impossible to ever get anywhere. And then it's terrifying taking the reigns into your own hands and realising you're responsible if it all fails. However, you're also able to make it succeed and THAT is what you have to concentrate on.

Your family moved from LA to Nashville, and your music moved in a new direction, too! What advice can you give to people who might feel stuck/limited, or like they're not completely happy with what they're doing?

It's tough! Embracing change is one of the best yet scariest things we can do but it's SO GOOD FOR YOU. I think we get too scared that everything must last forever and that's just not true. Remind yourself you can always move back, you can always find a new manager, office, sound, whatever it is you're scared to commit to. Just START. If you don't like it, you can always change it later! Jump in and try it 'cause, yeah, it might go wrong, but what if it goes right?

What has been the best moment of your career so far?

Hmm... releasing our debut album was HUGE. What a moment; I think I cried, haha. It took so long to get to that point, it was so worth it. Also winning a Teen Choice award was insane.

You've written some incredible songs, a lot of which are related to self confidence, self love, and hope for the future. Do you find songwriting to be therapeutic? Do you think your music helps your audience, too?

Yes. Whenever I'm experiencing a really intense emotion or thinking deeply about a concept that twists my brain, usually without even trying one of my thoughts sums it all up and then a melody pops into my head and I'm like omg... that idea just became the whole song. If it all comes together, I believe in it. If I can't finish it, I don't force myself to. It's so important to just let your mind flow. Yes, I think it helps tremendously to hear someone else express the same feelings as you. I experience this all the time listening to other people's music that I relate to; it can be so healing!

Who inspires you?

Anyone living fearlessly.

What advice can you give to young people wanting to pursue a career in music?

Know who you are. Forget the rules. Carve out your own path and do it how you want to, whatever that is. Remember the example you're setting for young people who watch you. Respect yourself. Develop your own morals and stick to them no matter what. Your standards are sacred.

Click here to pre-order Cimorelli's latest album, Alive, and their book, Lessons Learned.

2 comments:

  1. Great interview Amber, love Cimorelli! Good luck on all your future endeavors!!

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  2. This is such a great series! I look forward to reading about more wonderful women! Lovely interview!

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