Music and Religion

1. The religion that I grew up with would be pentecostal/Christianity. I grew up going to Hispanic pentecostal churches and in all of them, music, singing and dancing were all a big part of it. The main reason for music and singing and dancing is to praise God. That’s the way to worship him and it is a big deal. I remember going to these things called vigils. They were these long, very long, where they would sing, dance and play music all night long over and over all to praise God! I always found it very amazing how they would do this, I mean as a kid I didn’t understand it much. The practice of dancing in the pentecostal world that I grew up in, was when you were in the holy spirit and you would be dancing around waving your arms or in anything in that matter to worship God. There weren’t any rules to be followed I guess, because it was all in your own. You were the one who chose to be there and worship God and to be in the holy spirit was just something that happened when you were really into I guess. As a kid, like I said, I didn’t enjoy being there all night just because I was always tired but now that I understand why it’s done it’s a very beautiful thing to be able to worship and love God all together in a setting.

2. Well to be honest, a lot of music I’ve heard has a very gospel/soulful vibe to it. Whether you want to take that into a religious consideration. It’s the truth, that kind of style is based on simplistic Christianity beliefs because that’s where it began. I believe that much music that we hear today is pleasing to most people, even though they don’t take it to a religious matter. Some people may look at it as a true religious meaning and others may not. It really just depends on the way you were raised. For example, I have an atheist best friend who loves Christmas music but, she hates the Christmas music having to do with the birth of Jesus Christ. And I mean technically that’s what most people know when it comes to Christmas but, it course has many meanings to it. So like I said, it really depends on how you were raised and whether you want to believe that some music comes from a christian background or not.

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My Music Autobiography

Well as most of you already know, my family is from Guatemala and they came to the United States probably around 26 years ago. I was born and raised here in upstate SC. Growing up, I had numerous of musical influences in my life. Most of them probably came from friends and school and movies I grew up watching. The number one thing I remember that influenced me a lot were probably my two older brothers. The oldest one was actually born in Guatemala but came here with my mom on a plane for the first time in 1991, my dad was already in the US. Anyway, as you can imagine, they didn’t know much English when they first came. But as my brothers grew up going to school and stuff, they eventually learned. So as they got around their teens, I was probably around 7 or 8 years old, they were probably influenced by friends and such at school. One day I was going through my brothers CD’s and found some pretty good mix’s. That’s when I was introduced to the early 2000’s punk rock/alternative music. I distinctly remember listening to The All American Rejects and Green Day constantly as a kid. Every where I went, I would steal my brothers CD player and always bring those CD’s with me. Every single time I jumped in the car, that’s what I would be listening to and it’s funny because that’s what I still do today but with my phone of course:p Now of course, my parents also influenced a bit of musical taste with some Spanish music! Do you know that one song that goes, feeling hot hot hot? Well there was this band called Banda Blanca, which translates to “White Band” lol, but yeah I used to listen to this CD by them constantly and I have no idea why I loved the music so much but I did! Their type of music was a very Central American partying type of music I guess you would say. Anyway, there was also my moms favorite band from back in the day called Los Bukis! The lead singer is very well known, his name is Marco Antonio Solis and he also had a solo career. I always remembered his music being very romantic and pop rockish, I still like it! So yeah, these were probably my main influences of music growing up, I still listen to many of the same stuff but I have a more wide range of music I listen to today. I listen to a lot more indie/alternative music that was influenced by 50’s rock n’ roll and even 80’s music! I love everything about it:)

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Who Am I?

Well I was an average teenage girl who loved her music, her friends and her choir:) My high school choir was my life! We did almost everything together and we always got to travel around everywhere and do the thing we loved to do the most, sing! I was devastated when that all ended my senior year of high school:( It was a great year for me and I had no idea what college was going to be like, not the same as high¬† school I thought and I was right, it’s nothing like high school! But the relationships you make with people here are just the same, I feel right at home and I’ve created a new family with all of my music friends:) The good thing about going to school here where I grew up is that I still get to visit my old choir buddies and see my conductor as well:P I also still travel around everywhere with my best friends and go to rock concerts of my favorite bands like the crazy kid I am, I’ll always be a concert junkie though I love my music!:P Now in college, I study and practice my butt off 10 times more than I did in high school! That’s perfectly fine for me though, I enjoy it:)¬† In the future, I really hope to have my own independent life as a professional singer and get to live and have my own studio up in Boston someday! I know for a fact that Converse College and all of the professors and students are going to help me prepare for that!! I know that I’ll continue doing great things with my life and I hope and pray to be successful in the future. If you wanna check out my presentation that I did to the class, it is located on the post underneath this one:)

Common Sessions!

I really enjoyed all of the common sessions that took place recently! The financing one, public speaking and President Flemming’s “personal brand” My favorite would probably be the public speaking one. I just distinctly remember all of the different voice types people use while speaking publicly such as the “vocal fry” and the “baby speaking”. It’s pretty funny because now every time I hear someone speak in front of a crowd or something, I’m always paying attention to see if they do any of these. It’s really interesting to find out the small things that people do because they’re so nervous of speaking in front of people. I myself can be pretty calm while speaking in front of people but sometimes when singing in front of people, I can do subtle things like twitch my face or something. There’s always things you can do to try to prevent any of this from happening. Mainly try to take a public speaking class while in college. Also, try to practice speaking in front of publicly. I don’t really have much of a problem speaking in front of people as much as I do singing sometimes but there’s always ways to overcome those nerves! Overall, I learned that you can control the things you do while publicly speaking. Sometimes people do the “vocal fry” on purpose to sound appealing but it really doesn’t at all. Others don’t mean to do it but like I said it’s all nerves and you can totally overcome that! There’s nobody to impress and there’s nothing to be afraid of but yourself! As long as you practice you will do fine!:)

The Start of Something New:)

Okay, yes the title sounds a bit like High school music, shhhh:p ANYWAYYYY, I can think of a lot of cool new traditions for us Petrie School of Music students! First of all, I would like to start somewhat of a party for just like music students before school starts so we can all get to know each other more! I mean we already get to know each other enough during school because we see almost the same people everyday but, I would like to start a tradition where we have a huge get together of just all the music students and we have like a talent show where we do “non classical” music, music we’re not used to performing all the time while in school. It would be so much fun to have a day like that! It doesn’t even have to be before the school year starts, it can be during as well! I would just like to have a day where we do that, where we can bond together even more:) Or we can even get a group together to go to a concert around the area, If you know me you know that I LOVE going to concerts:) It’s really fun and it’s one of the only things that makes me very happy! But yeah, that would be my new Converse Petrie school of music tradition!

Finding my Flock:)

Well of course everyone is going to have a tough time fitting in and figuring things out in a new environment. When I first came to Converse, I was extremely shocked that was everyone was so nice to be honest. My thoughts were that there was going to be a lot of stuck up “preppy” girls. But it’s so diverse here and everybody and I mean everybody is nice! I love the atmosphere here:) Some challenges I overcame are of course adapting to a new schedule, new environment and new everything pretty much. You’ll get the hang of it after awhile. It’s all worth it! Myself being a commuter, it’s even harder because I don’t get to see all of the things that other do while staying on campus. That’s why I try my best to stay on campus as much as I can with a friend or something. I suggest to definitely try your best to do lots while on campus and practice, practice, practice!!! Be sure to experience a lot while you’re here and make lots of friends! Don’t be so shy, I know I’m not but I can be. I hope you will love Converse just as much as I do! It’s a great school and there’s no need to fit into a clique or anything like that as if you were in high school because I just love the fact that we can all be sisters here:) Enjoy Converse!