From the very beginning my whole family has been behind me one hundred percent.
Miranda Gil is a 19 year old Latina singer/ songwriter from Austin, TX. Mirandra has provided opening act support for Prince Royce and has her original track “Forever” has appeared on the soundtrack for HBO bound documentary “Interracial Dating In America: Going Deeper”. Miranda released her 1st all original EP titled “Take It Or Leave It” in July of 2011 and her video for the lead single “Take It Or Leave It“ has achieved 40,000+ views on YouTube on a small grass roots marketing effort. The release of the EP has been well received here in the Austin market and assisted in establishing a diverse fanbase from young Latinos to the professional that enjoys an occasional “fist pump”. In Janurary of 2012, Miranda went back into the studio and began work on her debut LP titled “My Turn” and is in the final stages of wrapping the project up.
1. How did you start doing what you do?
I was always in choir in elementary school, but even after practice was over, I still found myself wanting to learn different vocal warm ups and songs. So I begged my parents for some voice lessons. I enjoyed working with my first vocal coach in the 4th grade. Once I was in middle school, there were always little talent shows, and everybody sang their favorite songs. I always made sure to sign up and perform my favorite cover songs. Some of my friends would pay me or give me candy to sing for then in the cafeteria at lunchtime. At that moment and after many great cover songs, what I really wanted was to start work on writing my own music and performing it. My brother big brother helped me make some production and writing connections. With the help of new adult music friends, I was guided in writing my two first original songs. So by my eighth grade open-mic night talent review, I was singing two original songs, “Its Real” and “How it’s Gonna Be”. I look back at these songs and laugh but I would definitely say that’s where the artist in me began to surface. These first two songs are still part of my YouTube profile to show my growth over the years.
2. Who supported you along the way?
From the very beginning my whole family has been behind me one hundred percent. My mother and father have provided me with anything and everything within their means that I have needed to achieve this lifelong dream. My father Mark Gil Sr. and my oldest brother Mark Gil Jr. have taken on the roles as my managers. My Sister in Law, Nell Gil is a Licensed Cosmetologist and has been my hair and makeup go-to since my first big performance. My other two brothers support in any way they can as well. Others have grown to be considered as family and have played a huge part in my journey. My vocal trainer/producer LZ Love has totally brought out the deep soulful vibe in my vocals. She deserves all the credit helping me fine tune my young instrument. These next two people I consider my brothers from another mother, LOL. Brandon Williams has been my writing mentor since I was 13 years old and is still with me to this day. Shawn Dell, of Action Figures Music, my music producer has supported me from the get go, and I’m so grateful to have them in my corner. We spent 6 months in 2011 writing and recording my five song EP “Take It or Leave It”. It was all we needed to agree there was a lot more work to do. Starting January 2012, we have just spent the last year writing and recording my first full length album called “My Turn”. The album is now in post production. We are all so excited to bring the twelve all new original songs!
3. What were the high points?
Completing my first EP “Take It or Leave It” was defiantly one of my biggest accomplishments. It’s what really got my name out in the Austin music scene. In Austin there’s a newspaper called The Chronicle and it covers all types of music, news and art. Well in 2012 I made The Chronicle’s, “Best Of Austin” series in the Top 10 for Under 18 bands. Another success was when my first official music video for the song “Take It or Leave It” reached over 40,000 hits on YouTube. Now, one of my highest points to date has been the incredible opportunity to open up for Atlantic Records artist, Prince Royce at the ACL Live Moody Theatre! This was one of the most exciting performances I have ever been a part of.
4. What were the low points?
I suppose low points for me relate to my desire for my music to be heard and accepted. It seems as though people hold back until they see evidence of your product being validated in some way. I hope that makes sense. I do my best not to dwell on the negative. Most of the time I feel so blessed to be less than a year out of high school having already released a 5 track EP and recently completed the writing and recording phase for my 12 track freshman album project called “My Turn.
5. Have you had any negative reactions? How did you deal with them?
I started wanting to build up my singing career at a pretty young age and I don’t think my peers in school knew how to react to it. So for many of them, they took the automatic response to criticize and make fun of me. At first I took it really personal and had doubts if I even wanted to keep going. But I realized that love for my art was also a key to my happiness and was way more important than a couple of kid’s opinions. If anything it helped me build up my self-confidence. I pretty much declared to myself that I was going to take all negative opinions and just use them as fuel to my plans for success.
6. How have other young people reacted to you?
When it came to my music, I really wanted to reach out to my peers. I always try to carry myself in a role model fashion. Many of my performances are at public all age events. I love interacting with people after my shows, signing autographs and taking pictures with kids and their families. They really make me feel like a huge star. I want much more of that!
7. What have you learnt about yourself through the process?
I have grown so much as a person through the process of coming into my own as an artist. I’ve come to realize there’s so much more to consider on the performance side. Cardio, Cardio, Cardio! Conditioning, diet, sleep are all factors in my performance endurance. It is totally not as easy as it looks but I love it all. Just starting out on my journey I’ve realized that not everything is going to be smiles and sunshine. A lot of sacrifices have had to be made not only by me but my family as well. Thankfully I have been blessed with best family in the world that believe in my talent and know one day it will all be worth it. You have a good feeling when you know you have a team behind you but you have an even better feeling knowing your team is your family.
8. What skills/abilities have you developed along the way?
When I first started out I was pretty nervous about trying to write a song entirely on my own. I felt as though my skills weren’t quite there yet. But thanks to my writing mentor who instilled much confidence in me, I can honestly call myself a singer/songwriter. While working with my most recent vocal trainer, LZ Love, she made sure to work with me as I developed my own ability to create and record my own harmonies, vocal treatments and backup vocals on my recordings. This has made my entire recording process even more rewarding for me. An area of the music writing and recording process that is mostly unseen is the grueling and time consuming sessions to get just the right word combination for the message blended to music as it is also taking shape. It is nothing to start a writing and/or recording session or both, at 7pm and end up calling it a night the next morning at 3am or 4am. When I first co-wrote and recorded a song with Austin music producer Kris Keyz called “Alone”, currently on iTunes, Kris told me I had a great studio work ethic and that I would impress any future producers I worked with.
9. What advice would you have for other young people?
Stay true to who you are even if others put you down for it. Start with believing in yourself before you take others opinions into consideration. Be sure to make it a priority to surround yourself with people that genuinely want to see you succeed in life. It will only make the journey that much more rewardable to know you are with people that love you for you. And most importantly, follow your dreams and exemplify by example that they do come true. As I plan to do, Bring JOY to the listening world.