The Advice Column by Dear Diary is ecstatic to announce our first collaboration with a singer/songwriter, Kennedy Williams. (Don't worry we aren't dropping a duet together), but Kennedy is dropping some major advice for all the creatives out there, specifically in their 20s, on how to pursue your dreams in our ever-changing world.
In today's world of streaming services galore, the majority of the time, I hear a musician's singing voice before I get to know them as a person. I love music, and I love learning more about the musician I am listening to because it makes their music so much more meaningful to me, so I usually do some light research about them (on Google). This week's interviewee is the exception to my generalization because I met her before I knew anything about her talents as a singer/songwriter. The first time I heard Kennedy Williams perform, I was blown away because I had no clue she could sing (and boy, can she sing). I started following along her journey as a musician on social media and I thought who better to give us all some advice from a musician's perspective on how to take chances and follow your dreams in your 20s?
DD: Introduce yourself to our Dear Diary readers.
KW: “My name is Kennedy Williams and I’m a human who happens to be creative :) I am a singer-songwriter & have also been trying my hand at production over the last year.”
DD: What inspired you to become a musician? Does that inspiration still have an impact on you today?
KW: “My environment growing up definitely inspired me. I come from a family of 4 girls and my parents had us involved in the arts at a pretty young age. My dad is a very talented musician & always encouraged me to keep going once I started. I grew up dancing & learning musicality through movement but always had an urge to explore the music-making process. & yes, those inspirations still have an impact on me today. I just find myself surrounded by so much talent & creativity every day. Keeps me going.”
DD: What has your journey been like throughout your 20s as a musician?
KW: “Wild, haha. I moved to LA for the first time in 2016, I was 21. There was definitely some sensory overload during the first couple (of) years. Mixed with some really amazing moments, for sure. I was making solid connections at a fast pace & learning how to communicate and work with all different kinds of people. I think by 23 I had a better idea of the work mentality it would take to elevate my career. I felt more comfortable in my artistry, I had shared a decent amount of work with the world, I had my circle. But, as humans, we are ever-changing. And over the last couple of years, I’ve realized that your circle can change just as fast as you do. I’ve let go of a lot of relationships that weren’t bettering me as a musician. You get fed a lot of fake promises in this industry, and coming from a small town, it was hard to navigate around those. Realizing not everyone was capable of following through in the ways that were promised. I’m 26 now and finally feel confident in not only my artistry but my decision making and my intentions.”
DD: You recently moved out to California to work on a project, what is the best advice you would share with a young adult wanting to make a move that may seem like a challenge?
KW: “It’s most likely never going to feel like the right time. Just like with most big decisions. You’ll question all sides. You’ll find every reason not to do it. But resistance is the final obstacle to beat. If you want it, you have to take it with confidence. If you’re moving with an honest heart & taking advantage of what you can control, things will work out for you.”
DD: What is a piece of advice you would share with any artist who is struggling to pursue their passion in 2021?
KW: “There is a very fine line between creating and actually experiencing. Make sure you are taking care of the things outside of your art. Take care of your mind. Take care of your body. Meditate. Travel. Create relationships. Don’t forget to be a human first. Doing what you love comes (to you) a lot easier when you are in alignment with yourself and your surroundings. (This) brings me to another piece of advice. Surround yourself with people who have similar goals and a similar drive. You are a reflection of your environment.”
DD: What is the best piece of advice you have ever been given?
KW: “There will never be a time that every single person loves what you do so create for YOU.”
DD: What are some professional goals that you have for yourself in the next five years?
- Drop my first album!
- Drop a second album (hehe)
- Do a US tour.
- Drop my own apparel line associated with my brand.
- Get into print work for athletic wear.
- Book a festival!!
DD: Now for our final question of each interview, what now?
KW: “Continue growing. Always.”
Video of Kennedy performing 'Ain't No Sunshine (Cover)' (watch after you read this!)