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Community Spotlight: Meet recording artist Erika Stormm from the San Fernando Valley.

Today, we're happy to share with you our conversation with recording artist Erika Stormm from the San Fernando Valley.
We wanted to get to know a little bit more about who she is, how she got into the music industry, and where she's going on his creative journey. Here's how it went:

Thanks for taking the time to chat with us Erika! We're excited to have you as our next feature and learn more about you as a musician. Let's start this off with you sharing exactly what it was that initially drew you to your craft, and how has your journey unfolded since then?
Erika Stormm: I was drawn to make music since I was 8 years old for a number of reasons, but it really started when my parents were divorcing. In many ways, I witnessed verbal abuse, physical assault, disrespect, toxic communication, dishonesty, manipulation and more. Things were already not good before the divorce but that really brought it out in me and there’s so much, I’ve been through ever since. I would say that my driving motivation is trying to heal. I am able to express my story creatively through music like singing affirmations, lifting up the mood of a crowd when I sing and being pulled back into old memories in a healing way through my songs.

Can you share some insights into your creative process? Where do you find inspiration, and how do you translate that into your work?
Erika StormmI approach music like swimming except I always want to swim in the deep. Whether I’m making a beat or writing to a beat that’s already been made, I try to focus on how it makes me feel. My emotions and sensations give me the best direction. I often find that praying before I make music really helps me concentrate and write with intention as well. I take inspiration from a variety of artists, but I’d say the few main artists that come to mind are Kendrick Lamar, Ariana Grande, Smino and Jhene Aiko. I don’t like to imitate anybody’s sound, nor do I want to be an artist’s “mini me”. I definitely take inspiration from them with the beats they use and how strongly I can feel the message they’re conveying. I let that technique or flow sort of bleed into my music.

What projects are you currently working on, and what excites you the most about them?
Erika StormmI’m currently working on an EP and an album. I do not know which one I will drop first because there’s so many songs I want to review and am still working on. I find that albums are extremely special, and I definitely want mine to be. What excites me the most about this project is how much I’ve found my sound. It took a few years of not releasing music and I think I finally found it now. I will never stop learning but I’m happy with what I’ve found recently. I hope this album helps me and that it helps other people get through hard times because that is the main purpose of my soul being.

Looking back on your career so far, what would you consider to be your proudest achievement or most memorable moment?
Erika StormmEvery song has been an outcome of a difficult time. I would say every song I’ve written I am proud of for that reason but what I am most and truly proud of is that I found success. Growing up I always wondered what success meant to me. If it was luxury cars, a mansion, having a lot of designer clothing, or being praised for who I am. I later learned that it was none of the above. My greatest achievement and success were when I realized the true love I had for music. It was never about anybody else, material things, making millions off music, or getting popular on social media. It has always been about my love for music and will continue to be.

How do you navigate challenges and setbacks in your field, and what advice would you give to aspiring creatives facing similar obstacles?
Erika StormmSome of the challenges I face in this industry is meeting people who act like they’re offering you the world but are really just trying to make money off your artistry. This comes in different ways. Whether it’s little to no money, someone is still trying to benefit off of you. Once I learned that, it’s almost something I choose not to deal with because I know my worth, but it is extremely annoying. If I could give advice to any aspiring creative, it’d be to ask yourself this: what can someone give to me that i can’t give yourself? You have a gift. Invest in yourself, invest time into your craft and make your visions come to life on your own terms. Do not let people nickel and dime you in this industry because I promise you, they will try to. Take care of yourself and don’t let anybody treat you like you don’t know what you’re doing.

In an industry constantly evolving, how do you stay innovative and relevant while maintaining your unique voice/style?
Erika StormmIn an industry constantly evolving, I try to say innovative and relevant by being consistent as possible on social media, constantly learning the changes in the industry and applying myself the best that I can while continuously creating music. All of this can be hard to juggle but once you give your vision an opportunity to be believed in, no one can stop you.

Can you talk about any collaborations or partnerships that have been particularly meaningful or impactful for you?
Erika StormmI’ve recently been collaborating with a female artist/singer/rapper/musician/ songwriter whose name is Hallie. Being able to create art with another woman is so special to me. It's so empowering to thrive together as women in an industry that can get really toxic. Working with Hallie is actually my first female collaboration. She was featured in my remix “Ride the Wave” which is a single about pushing through hard times and she fit into the song so perfectly. I saw her perform once at Toxica Land (an event curated by Outstruct) and I knew right then and there that she’d be a great artist to work with. We’re currently working on another song together that I find to be very uplifting and I’m so excited to finish it. Singer/Songwriter/Drummer/Producer/ Engineer and artist Jesse Cortez is behind the production of this entire song. We are super excited!

What do you hope audiences or consumers take away from your work, and what impact do you aspire to make in your industry?
Erika StormmI hope that my audience can take away inspiration and lessons from my music. Sometimes I will write about the mistakes that I’ve done in my life and sometimes I will talk about my break throughs and sometimes I will talk about everything in between. I hope my music can be the part of school you never had. They don’t teach you finances; they don’t teach you about relationships, and they don’t teach you how to care for your mental health. There are so many things our school systems don’t teach us, and I wholeheartedly hope that my music can give people direction.

Lastly, what message or piece of wisdom would you like to share with your fans, or anyone inspired by your journey?
Erika StormmIf I can say anything to anyone out there who finds inspiration in my art, I’d say I’d love to give you a big hug because if my music resonates with you, I know you’ve been through a lot too and didn’t deserve it. I hope you know how special and important you are in this world. It’s so easy to remain unhappy but you can’t give up on yourself. Give your dreams a chance to be believed in.

Erika, thank you again for giving us the chance to get to more about you. Now, the floor is yours, share with us the links people can use to find more of your work, as well as any special announcements or projects you have coming up in the near future!
Linktree: erikastormm | Instagram, Facebook, TikTok | Linktree


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