We had the good fortune of connecting with Amy Correia and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Amy, have there been any changes in how you think about work-life balance?
Artists are more than their art, of course but it can become all-consuming. In my earlier years I was overly identified with the idea of myself as an “artist” and sold myself short as a human being. What we create isn’t what makes us worthy. I’ve missed out on some things in life because in the beginning of my career I had my head down at the expense of developing a more well-rounded personal life. I wasn’t aware of my limitations or what I needed to keep myself well-tuned and healthy. You can get burnt out, and it can take a long time to replenish the well if it has been run too dry for too long. I take much better care of myself now and keep the bigger picture in mind constantly. The bigger picture is a simple one: What’s my true purpose? How can I be useful to my friends and family and community? If I get too caught up in the world and its demand for more, more, more, I’m really no use to anyone.
What sets you apart from others? What you are most proud of or excited about?
I’m proud to be coming back to the truth of my own music after a long journey that included a near-fatal collision with the music industry. And that I was able to survive and transform into a stronger, wiser version of myself, and keep evolving as a musician and as a person.
In terms of music: I’m excited about the release of my new EP “As We Are”! It represents an important musical period in my life when I lived in Boston and played with a band of Kimon Kirk on bass (who also produced the album), Andy Plaisted on drums and percussion, and Mike Castellana on electric guitar and pedal steel. In my early years, I was sometimes told I didn’t fit neatly into a category and was led to believe that my interest in crossing genres was a liability. I think that’s one of the things that makes my music unique. My songwriting draws from a long lineage of songwriters and storytellers through the ages and I’m proud of that.
I also love performing, and lately, collaborating with filmmaker Jessie Carter Clavin, making videos for my new songs. Developing my voice as a songwriter and performer and finding new ways to engage and give back to fans and my fellow artists, after having received so much over the years, also drives me.
How did you get to where you are today professionally?
I had a lot of opportunities for success early in my career with major labels, but I didn’t know myself well enough or trust myself fully to always make the best decisions. In retrospect, I often was looking for someone else to lead rather than lead myself. But the important thing is I kept going.
I am willing to experiment. I am willing to make mistakes and learn from them.
What are the lessons you’ve learned along the way?
Never turn your authority over to anyone. You have to rely on yourself, but in order to do that you have to know yourself deeply and work every day on being the best person you can be and being responsible for your own work. No one is going to do it for you. It’s important to listen to advisors but the decisions you make effect you the most.
Never apologize for your art. Trust yourself and your talent. It’s not a mistake, and you did it on purpose because it was where you were at and what you brought out from inside in that time. Trust yourself and your talent.
Stop and celebrate every accomplishment, no matter how small or big.
Laugh more and lighten up.
Give back and be of service.
Surround yourself with good people, those people you feel at ease with that you respect and who respect you.
Trust your intuition. If you feel uncomfortable with someone, don’t move forward with them. This applies to any relationship.
Seek to understand the deeper reality of this world and what’s going on beyond the surface. Get a higher power of your own understanding so you don’t think you’re running the show. It will sustain you and give you some real power in the world and in your art.
What do you want the world to know about you or your brand and story?
True power and beauty comes from within. If I continue to have the privilege to make music, I hope to bring that out and share it with others and inspire them to do the same.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
Meditate at Self-Realization Fellowship Gardens in Mount Washington https://yogananda.org/
Hike Chaney Trail on the Altadena Crest Trail in Altadena
Eat vegan ramen at Hori Nori in Pasadena https://hironori.com/pasadena-ramen
Get a facial at Opalino Wellness in Atwater Village https://www.opalinowellness.com/
Dance with Acts of Matter at L.A. Stomping Ground in Alhambra https://www.stompinggroundla.org/events/acts-matter-focused-study-3
Go to a souldies show by Los Yesterdays https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VvJTEct-gUw
Eat Indian at Bhanu Indian Cuisine & Market
Explore archetypes at a tarot reading with John Parot https://www.instagram.com/jparot/?hl=en
Laugh at comedy show at Sit n Spin at Hudson Theater in Hollywood http://www.sitnspin.org/
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Robina Courtin, Buddhist nun https://robinacourtin.com/
I’ve had a lot of support from friends, family and colleagues along the way, and I’d like to mention a particular spiritual teacher Venerable Robina Courtin, a Buddhist nun. She is someone whose style of teaching helped me understand more about how the world runs and the enormous power we each have to “mold our own minds” and become more uplifted, compassionate and confident people.