Editor’s note: As part of CMN’s music journalism program, our music writers are profiling other team members, asking about how they got into music and what they see themselves doing in the future. You can read all the profiles here.
Lilia Owens is a music enthusiast whose passion began in her youth.
Owens remembers playing with pots and pans as a child, certain that she wanted to become a drummer for a “hot minute.” Her musical curiosity persisted when she started playing instruments in the fifth grade, after a traveling music show captured her imagination.
“I told my mom I wanted to play an instrument, and we went through ever single instrument they had there [in the music store]. She kept ruling them out because she thought I wasn’t gonna stick with it.”
Owens and her mother finally agreed on the clarinet. As she recalls,”It was either that or the flute, and I was like I know what a flute is and I don’t want to play it.”
She went on to play other instruments — mainly saxophone and piano — before choosing to focus on her voice, after a friend in high school convinced her to take singing lessons.
“It was a lot of like bouncing around and I guess testing the waters, but I ended up with singing cause I guess that’s just like the most inherent to my nature.”
Towards the end of her senior year in high school, her vocal coach convinced her to audition for Berklee College of Music just to see if she’d get in. Owens agreed, and was accepted, an event that has cemented her desire to make a career from music.
Currently in her junior year, she studies creative entrepreneurship and music business.
When asked if she wanted to become an artist or if he had another interest Owens hesitated. “Uh, I think about that a lot. One day I’d like to have five songs out that were just mine, but I’m not rushing that because I think I have strengths in other places.”
Strengths in other avenues of the music business is something she certainly does possess.
In addition to music journalism, Owens has been working with other musicians, helping them brand themselves better. Figuring out how to help people sell themselves as artists — and giving them thematic ideas — is something she thoroughly enjoys.
Owens expresses a desire to merge her musical style and other talents together. She naturally gravitates towards R&B, and at the moment is into FKA Twigs and rap songs that are more “sing songy.”
She hopes to fuse those sounds together into her own creations.
If you obsess over singers and bands, and are one of those people who make a playlist for every occasion, join CMN’s Music Journalism Course and get real-time experience, intense feedback on your writing, exposure to music industry insiders, and a great place to display build your portfolio. Get all the details on the Music Journalism Course here.