MIAMI-BORN singer-songwriter Sabrina Claudio is known for expressing beautiful, intimate conversations through her songwriting and music.
Following her 2017 debut EP Confidently Lost, the 22-year-old singer also shares an air of soft sweetness that she so effortlessly seems to blow into her songs such as Unravel Me and Frozen, from her second project About Time.
“I listen back to my first project and I’m like wow, I’ve changed so much in such a short amount of time,” Claudio said, just before hitting the stage for her set at the Good Vibes Festival last month.
From her SoundCloud start to her latest 2018 album No Rain, No Flowers, she credits her new “vulnerability” in her current music to musical and personal growth that flow parallel with each other.
“I’m only 22 and I’m [not only] growing as an artiste but also growing as a woman, and so my music has just evolved quickly,” she said.
“I think I’ve just gotten a lot more comfortable with expressing myself in ways I didn’t think I could in the past.”
With songs like Messages From Her, Creation, and Did We Lose Our Minds, she began establishing her artistry four years ago when she moved to Los Angeles to focus more on her music.
While Claudio knew who she was and what sound qualities she wanted, she admitted she was “never confident enough to go for that” until making the move at age 18.
“I said, you know what, if it doesn’t work, it doesn’t work. But at least I’m being true to myself,” she explained. “It took me a good amount of years but I finally got it, I think.”
When asked if she ever gets lost in her thoughts while writing songs, Claudio admitted: “I get lost a lot of the time – sometimes, in a good way, but a lot of times, I overthink what I’m writing, because I just want to make sure whatever story I’m telling is gonna be able to heal somebody in some certain way.
“It’s probably a lot easier than I think to just write, you know, in ways that I know will translate to everybody.
“But because it’s just me writing, and I’m in my own head, I’m like ‘this isn’t good enough’, so it takes a little minute for me to finalise a song.”
But the singer added that the “creative process is just fun for me”.
Part of being able to produce honest lyrics stems from opening up and sharing emotions with other songwriters, something Claudio has welcomed for her next album.
The upcoming album will feature work with “a lot of amazing women”, where the process of writing in camaraderie has been “liberating”, she added.
Claudio worked with US R&B singer-songwriter Harloe for As Long As You’re Asleep, her single from June this year.
According to Claudio, the song was written the day the pair met, when Harloe was just “spilling her heart out to me”.
“We weren’t writing, we were just talking,” said Claudio. “She was just telling me everything that she was going through, and literally everything she was saying was like a song concept.
“I was like, girl, let me write these down, hold on.”
As a result, As Long As You’re Asleep was created in an hour, in an exercise where Claudio helped process Harloe’s emotions by acting as a personal diary – an example of a liberating writing session.
However, it wasn’t always the case for Claudio, who likens working with songwriters to “blind dating”.
The singer insisted: “It really is. It’s a very vulnerable thing which I was afraid of before and which is why I didn’t want to write with writers.
“It’s because I didn’t want to express myself and tell them what I was going through, and I was afraid of what they were going to tell me.”
Although Claudio did not reveal more details about her new album, her latest song Holding the Gun, which premiered on Aug 2 with a music video on YouTube, shows a darker tone.
The exciting new chapter that comes with the anticipated album had its genesis with the very first song she wrote, and her “all-time favourite song that I’ve written”, Confidently Lost, which was also the title of her debut EP.
Claudio said: “Very cliché of me to say, but it is! Just because that was the first song I wrote as an independent artist, as an artist that started writing my own things.
“Until this day, it’s completely relatable to me, and my story, and my everyday life, so when I sing it ... and then hearing people sing it back, it’s like we’re all like in this little world of being Confidently Lost, and it’s great.”