Today we’d like to introduce you to Alianna Perez.
Alianna, we’d love to hear your story and how you got to where you are today both personally and as an artist.
As every artist does, I have a unique chain of events that has led me to this point. I’m a 21 years old Puerto Rican/Native American from St. Petersburg, Florida (Originally from Morristown, NJ). I’ve been singing since I could speak, and have been performing since I was about seven. I attended performing arts middle & high schools, where I received a background in dance, vocal performance & musical theatre, and also where I began teaching myself piano & guitar at 14.
When I left for college, I set out to pursue a degree in Animal Behavior, because I didn’t see much promise for stability in a musical theatre career. Little did I know halfway through my first semester I’d create a makeshift recording studio under my dorm bed, and spend more time writing songs & recording myself than doing homework or even going to class. My GPA went from a 3.8 to a 1.5, if that says anything. It became very clear to me then that music was my path. That summer of 2016 I bought a one-way ticket to Los Angeles and promised myself that I would work as hard as possible to make my dream come true.
I spent countless hours teaching myself how to produce & engineer, went through various stages with losing equipment, buying more equipment…but my skills were still, at best, just scratching the surface. Finding myself as an artist hasn’t been easy (is it ever). I come from a lot of religion and no money. There were many beliefs that I had to unlearn and redefine within myself, and there have been many financial lessons along the way, but still I was determined to push through. In this past year, I have faced the biggest financial challenges I’ve ever endured. I lost my housing and my car, leaving me homeless and couch surfing between friends’ houses in Long Beach & Los Angeles. I currently make money performing on the street & train, and scouring craigslist for cash gigs. But despite my decline in stability, this past year has also been the biggest jump in growth that I have made in my entire musical career so far.
Since summer 2018, I have become rooted in an impactful artist community called Aim 4 The Heart, which is where I found out about my current school, 1500 Sound Academy. I received a full scholarship for the first term and recently received a full scholarship from Fender for this new term. Through this incredible school, I have been gifted the opportunity to perfect my artistry & hone my skills in engineering, production, and business. You could say my story is a little bit sad, but to be honest, it’s been the most thrilling and humbling experience I’ve ever had.
We’d love to hear more about your art. What do you do and why and what do you hope others will take away from your work?
I am a singer-songwriter, musician (piano & guitar), and producer. The music I make has a lot of influence from Old Jazz, Indie-Folk, R&B, and Hip-Hop. I create a variety of different styles of songs–I like to play around with different influences. One day I’ll write a love song, the next day a sad song, and the next day a chill rap song. I go off of whatever emotions I’m feeling and express whatever it is I have to say in that moment. The messages in my songs touch on the lessons I’ve learned in love, self-acceptance, money, relationships, and living on my own in LA. I feel like many young people could relate to my story and find solace in the emotions of my work.
I hope people can take away from my artwork that we are born into a chaotic world, with many answers but not the truth. The truth about life is, love & happiness is within ourselves, not in a life created for us by others. We can create happiness and manifest success by being present, believing in ourselves to make it happen, and holding ourselves accountable to get it done. I want every young person to know that they really can become anything they want to be, that they don’t have to succumb to the will of those that seek to control them. Whatever you set your mind to, whatever you say you can/can’t do, is the reality. You just have to DO IT. In addition to music, I also love to create visual art, such as paintings, sculptures, photography, and graphic design (I design my own cover art) I also express a lot of my artistic taste through my fashion.
Have things improved for artists? What should cities do to empower artists?
To be honest, I’m not sure if conditions for artists have gotten worse or are still the same. Rent in the city is way too high to afford on basic wages, so a good half of the population is either sharing cramped spaces, living in their cars, or homeless. As artists, we have to work for free for a while before we start gaining real attention, and many paying jobs force us to work long hours with low wages, so we are barely able to scrape by to pay for rent, bills, food, transportation, etc. and still have time/energy to create. There are so many buildings but not enough housing, and not enough artist living communities.
As a student, my current living situation being homeless does impede my ability to find stable places to work on assignments and is mentally draining for my creativity. If Los Angeles wants to help artists, I would at least start by offering some type of affordable artist housing, especially for students & artists that are actively working towards careers in the music/entertainment industry, for those of us that have no chance at paying almost a rack for a room every month. I personally believe that having a stable place to stay and work will drastically improve my workflow and that it could also improve the lives and stability of others.
You can find most of my works on my SoundCloud, www.soundcloud.
I have one released single on all streaming platforms entitled ‘Oasis’, produced by Beatsmusiq & featuring Louis King, which you can find the music video for on my YouTube (https://youtu.be/o1081DEmbPQ)
ALSO~ I have a new single releasing on all streaming platforms in August (complete with visuals!!) entitled ‘Honey Girl’. It’s a little introduction to who I am and my life in this beautiful crazy city.
You can support my work by following me on Soundcloud, Youtube, and Instagram, and sharing my new release ‘Honey Girl’ with your friends, or you can come see me LIVE at ALL THAT 90’s Art Exhibition on Saturday, August 24th from 7-11PM in Downtown Los Angeles. There will be live music/dance performances, visual artists, vendors, and live body painting, not to mention an incredible amount of nostalgia. You can RSVP for free at www.allthat90sartshow.
- Website: www.soundcloud.com/aliannathealien
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: www.instagram.com/aliannathealien
- Facebook: www.facebook.com/aliannaperezmusic
Shane Sak, Britney Fregoso, Gibran Lozano