Meet four talented southeast Michigan girls who are making a difference through music. Here, Metro Parent chatted with these young ladies to find out a bit more about their positive messages for other youth.
Singing is just one passion for Sophia Washer, 14, of Bloomfield Hills. This up-and-coming pop artist also plays violin, dances, acts and loves photography. But her powerful pipes and infectious beats – which you can hear on her single “One Way Ticket” – are where it’s at for Sofi K, who also pens her own lyrics.
“I got into music so that people who are afraid to say how they feel know that there are people that feel the same way,” says Sophia, who takes her stage name from her grandmother, Sofia, and Macedonian spelling of her middle name, Constance.
With a soulful style a la Duffy, Sofi K, who’s been performing on stage since age 4, definitely wants to tour and keep making music: Her debut album, LoveHate, is due out Nov. 6. But most of all, she wants to inspire kids her age to be themselves and work for their goals. “Never give up, and never stop believing in yourself.”
Making music started out very personal for Detroit natives and best friends Mycah and Kamiylah, 11, who faced a bullying problem at school. Determined to stop all bullying, the pair, who met at Star Factory Artist Development in Oak Park, released their self-dubbed urban-pop-style song “BeautiFascinaTastic” – a mashup of beautiful, fascinating and fantastic – on YouTube in August.
“We wanted to help kids’ self-esteem and help them feel good about themselves,” Mycah says. Adds Kamiylah, “The song is about being whoever you want to be in this world.”
Their positive-message, Lisa Frank-vibrant video hit 11,000 views in a month and sparked the idea to launch their International Bullying Campaign, which has the girls planning to go on tour, starting in The Bahamas this December, to help end bullying.
Performing at the CMA Music Festival in Nashville is a big deal for country artists. For Bernadette Kathryn, 15, of Sterling Heights, it’s NBD. She’s done it three times. But fame isn’t the aim for this teen, who started singing at 5.
“Pretty much everyone in the music industry wants to make it big,” says Bernadette, whose strong voice you can hear at 80-plus events a year. “I want to help improve someone’s life and be someone that people look up to.”
Besides covering country, pop and classic rock songs (her band, the Lonely Days Band, is named for her idol Patsy Cline’s hit “Seven Lonely Days”), she’s got nine original recorded tracks and an EP, Not Too Young, under her belt.
Encouraging kids her age to “live their lives in a better way” is a big theme, whether it’s bullying or not texting and driving. Her empowering “Look at Me Now” video features 40 real-life kids who have bullied or witnessed bullying.