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Conversations with Alina Cherone

Today we’d like to introduce you to Alina Cherone.

Hi Alina, so excited to have you on the platform. So before we get into questions about your work-life, maybe you can bring our readers up to speed on your story and how you got to where you are today?
I was born in Brooklyn, NY, and raised in Willingboro, NJ. My parents came to this country from Trinidad & Tobago and were extremely musical growing up. My father was a singer/guitarist and my mother loved writing songs to whatever he played. It was sort of inevitable for me to become a musician. I began singing at age eight and carried my passion all the way through college, where I majored in Musical Theater at the University of the Arts. I met Phil Smith in Philadelphia (producer/guitarist) after graduating and we began writing music together. In 2016, after being selected for Northwestern University’s Johnny Mercer Songwriting Intensive, I decided to put theater on hold and pursue songwriting as a career. In 2019, Phil and I moved to LA where we met our bandmates, Brahm Genzlinger (Guitarist/Composer) and David McCullough (Drummer/Songwriter). We’ve been making music together ever since.

Can you talk to us a bit about the challenges and lessons you’ve learned along the way. Looking back would you say it’s been easy or smooth in retrospect?
It’s been smooth despite our self-doubt and occasional anxiety. Even though we’re not on the radio or have tons of followers, I think we’re in a solid place as a band and as individuals. I personally struggled with imposter syndrome, as do many artists, and it’s held me back for a really long time. It was hard to visualize my future and that gave me excruciating anxiety. I’ve found better ways to let go of my expectations and it’s becoming easier to accept my wins and my losses.

As you know, we’re big fans of you and your work. For our readers who might not be as familiar what can you tell them about what you do?
Our band is called Even Us. I’m the lead singer and I write songs together with multi-instrumentalists Phillip Smith, Brahm Genzlinger, and David McCullough. We have a pretty unique identity. I think when people first see that I’m a black female lead singer in a band with white guys they wonder what we’re going to sound like. Race has always been intertwined with genre and when people first see me, they assume that I’m an R&B singer, but when they see all of us together they’re forced to accept us as we are. We have a hard time describing our sound, but it has elements of dream pop, indie soul, and soft rock. We’re proud of our upcoming EP which will be released May 1st.

Do you have any advice for those looking to network or find a mentor?
I think the best way to find a mentor and/or network is to showcase yourself. I find that sharing my artistry connects me to like-minded people and reassures me whenever I have doubts. The best thing you can do is post and give people a window into your life. Try to be authentic with what you put out there and don’t worry so much about looking or sounding perfect.

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Image Credits:

Charity Jolivette @yesimcharity

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