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Carmen began chronicling her life in diaries as soon as she learned to write; it became a necessity, the mechanism by which she connects with herself. But writing was not the only expressive medium in Carmen’s young life. Carmen began singing in her school chorus and church choir at the age of six and quickly discovered her affinity for music. Growing up immersed in the angst-ridden grunge/alt rock of the 1990s, her earliest musical influences included Nine Inch Nails, Nirvana and Tori Amos. At thirteen, after discovering her mother’s vinyl collection and listening endlessly to The Beatles' Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band, Carmen’s musical experience expanded into the classic rock realm of the 60s and 70s, where she met favorites Joni Mitchell and Led Zeppelin.
At nineteen, Carmen packed her passion for music and an upright piano and moved from her native Los Angeles to San Diego, determined to find the songs inside her. The piano became her best friend. She spent most of her time in her solitary one-bedroom cottage teaching herself to play, and the songs swiftly came. But stage fright and self-doubt kept Carmen secluded with her songs for nine years. During those years of singing in secret, Carmen focused on intellectual expansion. She earned an undergraduate degree in Psychology, and in the fall of 2008, she began law school.
But in June 2009, just before her second year of law school, Carmen hit a profound emotional bottom. She hadn’t played a piano or written a song in over a year and was dying inside. She knew she’d never be fully alive without committing herself to the songs inside her. From the top shelf of her closet, Carmen took down her shoebox of dusty old cassette tapes filled with songs pleading to be set free. Carmen nurtured the songs to life, and in August 2010, as she continued her legal education, she recorded a humble 4-song EP called, “Years.” She started playing open mics and small gigs around San Diego as she continued trudging her way through her last year of law school. Carmen graduated in May 2011. Four months later, she released her debut full-length album, "The Hive."
Carmen’s entirely self-written debut album is a courageous emotional disrobing revealed through intensely honest lyrics both deeply personal and universally relatable. Carmen delivers each carefully crafted song with a distinct and colorfully versatile voice, full-force and powerful at times and intimate and vulnerable at others. Though completely self-taught on piano, Carmen’s intuitive musical compositions are hauntingly beautiful. Carmen is currently composing music for her third release, a 5-song EP coming in winter 2014.
Carmen describes herself as a girl singing her songs hoping to touch people’s hearts while she tries to get free.