Interview with Tejano Music Award Winner Destiny Navaira

Destiny Navaira
On November 12th, 2016, the 36th Annual Tejano Music Awards took place in Downtown San Antonio, TX. A nervous Destiny Navaira posed for pictures on the purple carpet with her Dad and brother, who also happen to be her bandmates. After the last click of the cameras, Grupo Remedio walked into the building and immediately got pulled onstage to announce an award. Then, it was only a short-time backstage before their categories were up. Best New Male. Best New Female. Best New Group. They swept. “I felt relieved,” Destiny said, “because now we could focus on the tribute.” Although, she’s just now gaining popularity as an individual, she’s been immersed in the music industry since she was born into a family of Tejano Music Royalty. Her late uncle, Emilio Navaira, is a grammy award-winning artist who had numerous billboard charting songs on the Latin and Country Charts, many of which, her dad, Raulito Navaira, wrote himself. It was an emotional night for Destiny as she prepared to pay to tribute to her beloved uncle who passed away earlier this year. First up, Grupo Rio with Emilio’s son, Pani, followed by The Bandoleros, and Grupo Remedio. Finally, ending with his two eldest sons, Emilio and Diego. “I was happy to have friends and family backstage with me the entire night,” Destiny said, “It felt good to know they were there for me.”
FullSizeRender-1She recently graduated from The University of Texas at Austin and since then, she has been writing music and touring across the U.S. and Mexico with her band. Music runs in her blood and she’s finally breaking out as the next force to be reckoned with in Tejano Music.
The Life and Rhymes team had the opportunity to ask her some questions:

Rosa Polio: Would you agree with this statement: “Passion can lead you to success”?

Destiny Navaira: I believe that passion is a giant factor in your success. I believe it initiates the start of your journey, pushes you through the toughest times, and rewards you when you reach your goals.

Derrick Marrow:What is your biggest dream/desire as an artist and what steps do you think it will take to bring it to fruition?

Destiny: My biggest dream as an artist is to reach people with my music; especially my lyrics. I want people to put on my music when they need relief, when they want to celebrate, or when they just want to think. I think constant writing and drafting, truly pushing my music through radio, social media and live performances to get it to the public.  I also believe that transforming my music into visuals, stories, and other related things will help people hear what I have to say.

Laura Quinton: Did being surrounded by family members who were also musicians influence the way you felt about music or your career overall?

Destiny: Being surrounded definitely had an impact on me. I always saw music as my way of making my family proud of me. Once I discovered singing for people, especially my family, and how it gave them such a sense of pride, I took it and ran. Lyrics are the most important to me. I believe it is because my father was my idol growing up, and he is such an accomplished song writer.

Jasmin Ramos: Do you feel like there’s more pressure for you to be successful in your musical career because of your family’s past influence in the Tejano genre? If so, how do you handle that pressure?

Destiny: I do feel more pressure is added on to me, not so much to succeed but to prove myself.  There is a lot of talk that I am only able to do what I do because of my name. The pressure, to me, is sometimes overwhelming because I know my abilities, but mostly, it is a motivator. Every performance I have, is where I shut down the pressure.

Daniel Quintanilla: What inspires you to write a song? Who are your influences in music?

Inspiration for writing comes from everywhere: situations, other artists, other songs, feelings, friends, family, tragedy and happiness.  My dad is my biggest inspiration for writing. I believe that when you write and sing your own songs, you become that much more connected with your audience. My influences in music are wide-range.  I love John Mayer and his metaphors, the Beatles’ simplicity in writing and melodies, the creativeness of Michael Jackson, Bruno Mars soul, and the heart of Juan Gabriel. Voice-wise, I am a power singer and love power singers like Beyonce, Adele, Whitney Houston, Selena Quintanilla, Shania Twain and so many more.

Issac Prado:  If there was anything else besides singing and music, what would your next best passion be? Coming from a family of prominent Tejano music artists, how much were you influenced to keep the ‘tradition’ (did you feel pressure from your family to stick to the music industry)?

Destiny: If anything else, I think I’d like to be a writer or a broadcaster. I love influencing and being able to reach messages across different types of crowds.  I love to travel, try new things and be able to share experiences with others.  

Music just seems to always follow me.  I never felt like I had to do music, but I always had the urge to.  Tradition is important to me within my own morals, and Tejano is my safe haven.  I love the language, the styles that it offers, and the small family-like feel it gives.  My family has always supported me in everything I’ve done. I was an athlete all through high school, went to a University as a full-time student, joined a sorority, and have a full-time job as a business woman for a non-profit company.  If anything, they have encouraged me away from music, but it’s always been a part of me.  

Matthew Arrant: Does being a minority help influence your music? Meaning, you see things differently than others so you perform about it?

Destiny: Being a minority in music is something that drives me.  I know a vast amount of artists that are amazing and should be so much more successful.  Now, I’m not saying that it has to do with our ethnicity, but I don’t understand why there is only a handful of Latinos in music who truly have their name out there.  As far as performing, I think it makes me stand out. I come from a very limited, culturally diverse neighborhood, and the fact that I do so many types of music makes me different.

Alyssa Vega: What’s the hardest part of pursuing a career in music, and what advice would you give to others who are trying to pursue their own dreams?

Destiny: Hardest part of pursuing a career in music is the criticism, learning to take it, having patience with your music, your audience, the process it takes to actually perform and make a show, finding dedicated musicians and team members to help you pursue your dream and everything else about it.  It’s not just the music, it’s so much more that comes along with it.  

When you’re trying to pursue your dream, I truly believe (as cliché as it sounds), you can’t let anyone or anything make you change your mind. Only you know what you want. You can find people to help you, but ultimately it’s up to you. Don’t stop when it gets hard. Work harder when it gets harder.  Practicing and perfecting your craft is essential to anything you do, and getting up and making things happen is what will make you rise above all the other dreamers.

About Alyssa Vega 5 Articles
Something like Maya...just trying to be phenomenal and empower you with my words.

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