Imagine being in one of the most successful girl groups of the generation and leaving after more than 4 years together. That’s the story of the former fifth member of the popular girl group “Fifth Harmony”’s Camila Cabello–a young, female artist that has embraced her Spanish roots through her music and topped the charts even before releasing their first solo album.
Karla Camila Cabello Estrabao, also known as Camila Cabello is a 20 year old Cuban-American singer and songwriter. She was born in Cojimar, Eastern Havana, Cuba. She’s half Cuban which she gets from her mom’s side and half Mexican which is from her dad’s side. For most of her early life, she and her family moved back and forth between Havana and Mexico City until they finally got settled in Miami, Florida when she was 5. She was very invested in school knowing that if she wanted to get into a university, she’d have to earn a scholarship. Then, in the school year 2012–13, she left school to pursue her singing career.
Camila was always very shy about her singing, but on her 15th birthday, when asked what she wanted, she asked her mom to take her to the Miami Xfactor 2012 auditions. She got through the first round but when it came to the second one, she was rejected. A while after, she was asked to come back and was then put in a girl group now known as “Fifth Harmony”.
The group ended up placing 3rd in the competition. Soon after, they got signed to Epic Records and went on to release an EP and 2 albums. They released their first EP “Better Together” in late 2013 after leaving Xfactor. In 2015, they released their first album together called “Reflection”. Soon after, they went on their first headlining tour and toured in Europe, North America & Asia. Their last album “7/27” was released mid 2016 and also had a following tour which was in South America, North America and Europe.
Fifth Harmony was very successful in their career but after a couple of years, Camila wasn’t content with the group and announced her departure in late 2016. The process of leaving turned out to be very messy and heart-breaking for both her and the group, but they’re all in a better place now.
A big factor in Camila’s departure was a lack of creative input. Fifth Harmony’s music is very sexual and mainstream and tends to lack powerful meaning. It’s also not very timeless and is more focused on what’s hot right now. Though they have plenty of great songs, they always promote the ones that seem more basic and she wasn’t pleased with what their brand was selling. She wanted to make music that focused in a different direction that didn’t just sell sex.
Since going solo, Camila has been working non-stop on her upcoming album, “The Hurting, The Healing, The Loving”. The album talks about the experiences and hurt she’s been through the past couple of years. Every song has a personal meaning behind it and each falls under one of the three sections. It starts with “The Hurting” which is the beginning stages when she was facing the pain of what she’s been going through. “The Healing” relates to overcoming it all and the final section, “The Loving” is about being at a better place in your life.
Not only is her music relatable, it also has a variety to appeal to everyone. Due to her songwriting collaborations with artists like Charli XCX, Pharrell Williams and Ed Sheeran, she was able to create lots of different sounds. She’s also had collaborations on her tracks with people like Quavo and Young Thug to appeal to the rap audience. Her released songs “Havana,” “OMG,” “Crying in the Club” and “I Have Questions” vary in genre from pop-soul, to pop-dance, synthpop and latin pop. Her style is very unique and though it may not be the typical pop you hear on the radio, it’s definitely worth the listen. Her songs have exceeded in the charts and never seem to disappoint.
Lots of artists have had success after breaking off from group acts and embracing their own solo careers. And though seeing Camila leave the group was heartbreaking at first, I can definitely say I’m happy to see her take off on her own. She’s been developing her own voice musically and as a person which has completely won over the public.