Photo credit: Billboard
On January 12th, Camila Cabello came out with her highly anticipated eponymous debut album Camila which smashed records with it taking reign at number 1 in over 100 countries.
The 20 year old Cuban-Mexican artist struggled with internal conflict with the direction of the album which was initially titled The Hurting, The Healing, The Loving and was initially set for release in September 2017. However, she decided to take an alternative route and redirect it back to what she felt would feel authentic.
The album alludes to her Latin roots with songs like Havana playing homage to her Cuban homeland, with Latin-inspired melodies also flow in other tracks such as She’s In Control. Much of this production was aided by Frank Dukes with him being a “big part of taking a classic part of Latin culture and combining it with something new and modern,” Cabello says. “Together we made an album that’s just reflective of me in every way. It’s what’s inside my head and my heart.”
Cabello changed the title as she felt like she wasn’t mentally in the same place in her life regarding the journey of the album felt like a redirection back to her true self, inspiring the title.
She revealed to Zane Lowe in an interview for Beats1 Radio “I was just not in the place in my life where I wanted to be like “Oh, I’m going into the studio to write my next single, to write my next smash, whatever. I just didn’t want to think like that. I just wanted to be in the place where I was making music for fun and making music to purely express myself.” This aspect is evident in the emotional, stripped back track Consequences which only includes an accompanying piano without backing vocals.
Removing the pressure proved to pay off with her album debuting at number 1 on the Billboard Hot 200 chart, with her smash hit Havana topping the Billboard Hot 100 chart as well. This makes her the first artist going solo since Beyonce back in ‘03 to top both charts simultaneously.
It’s an iconic move from the young songstress who faced opposition from the keyboard warriors on Twitter who doubted her success as a solo artist when she left the popular girl group Fifth Harmony at the end of 2016.
On her fearless decision to go solo at a time where Fifth Harmony was undoubtedly at their peak following their eclectic performance the American Music Awards in 2016 she told Billboard in February 2017 “The easiest route would be to shut my mouth, sing the songs, wear the clothes and keep going, you know?” she explained. “I mean, [we were] at the peak of our career. It’s definitely not the safe option. [But] I have it in my DNA. The way my mom raised me, it has always been: Don’t settle. Jump and hope you grow wings on the way down.”
If anything Camila inspires us to follow our vision even if we have hundreds of hater doubting us and trusting that voice that says jump even if circumstances tells us otherwise and stats and staying true to the essence of who we are and meant to be pays off more in the long run.