By Triantafilia Memisaki
You may not know her name yet, but Cindy Ortega is on the cusp of great things. There is more to this up and coming young singer, born and raised in Santa Ana, California, than meets the eye. Her infectious melodies combined with strong thought-provoking lyrics tell deep stories with passion and energy. She’s been singing since the age of three and hasn’t stopped since. In the meantime, her brilliance has put her in the first place of many contests and she doesn’t plan to stop there. Her love of music is going to take her places and she invites you to join her in this exciting journey. Although her songs provide a medium to get to know who she is, we’ve put together the following interview to allow you to get to know her even better. Enjoy what she has to say as she answers our questions and welcomes us into her world.
Have you always enjoyed the art of music?
Yes, I have since I was aware the world of music existed.
When did you first start singing and how did it all begin?
I started singing as a child. I would sing along to all my mom’s favorites, like Marisela, Los panchos, Antonio Aguilar, Credence, The Beatles, Donna Summers and many more.
What is the first song you ever sang?
The first song I ever sang was “Pelo Suelto” by Gloria Trevi.
What did your family do to encourage you, if indeed they did?
My family always encouraged me to follow my dreams. As I grew up, my parents signed me up for singing contests on TV and off TV. Wherever I could perform was a great opportunity for me to be heard. They continue to support my passion for music and I love them so much for it.
Is there anything you love, besides music?
I honestly love doing so many things. Hehehe I am a big fan of creating and being creative. I love the Arts over all.
Any celebrity crushes you’ll admit to?
Lol! I can’t say, what if one day I meet him? Oh, no, I would be very embarrassed. Hehehe
What is the best advice you have ever been given?
The best advice I was given was from my mom; a beautiful woman inside and out. Moms know best!
She told me “Don’t let anyone define you, always have self-respect”. She told all her 7 children that. Love my brothers and sisters.
Who are your musical role models?
My music role models are Mariah Carey; tremendous talent, yet humble and sweet. Ray Charles; his passion and dedication were unbelievable. Singer Linda Rostand; gorgeous voice and proud of her Mexican roots. I absolutely love the Album “Canciones a mi Padre”.
What kind of music do you listen to?
I listen to everything! From Hip Hop, R&B, Jazz, Norteñas, Cumbias, Bachata, oldies but goodies lol! Me encanta la música.
What is your musical guilty pleasure (a song that might be embarrassing)?
Hehehe, it would have to be “Whip it” by Devo! I get into it. All I’m missing is the famous red plastic hat. Haha!!!
Where would you most like to perform, if you had your choice of stages around the world?
No matter where, how small or big a stage is, the pleasure of singing and transmitting the feeling of one’s music means the world to me. That’s what’s important to me .
Which artist would you most like to open for?
I’d love to open up for Mana, the Spanish Rock band. That would be amazing!!!
If you could dabble in another genre of music, what would it be and why?
I would do Mariachi music because the way the trumpet, guitar and violin come to together is just lovely to listen to. I really like how the songs talk about people working en el rancho and how important La siembra was. Or the story of two people falling in love so innocently.
Any non-musical hidden talents you’ll share with us?
I can cook very well!! Everyone always comes for seconds. They are always very surprised by that.
What do you think about when you’re performing?
I think of what I’m singing so that every word that comes out is delivered with a lot of passion. It could be (the passion) of sadness or pure happiness. That’s my goal!
Do you try to give messages in your songs? And if so, what are they?
Of course! A song is a message. It’s relevant to how I’m feeling, or how someone else felt when they went through a hard moment in their life. When I collaborate and write a song with someone, we think of how that person is feeling and why. It’s definitely a way to deliver a message of one’s story or other people’s stories. I really enjoy singing uplifting music with a positive message. The one of never giving up! We are all fighting for a cause, for people identify and feel motivated by it.
Where do you get the inspiration for the music you play?
Inspiration is all around us. It’s a matter of taking it all in and transforming it.
What is your motivation and where are you heading?
My motivation is my family. I want them to know that with love, support, dedication and persistence they can make it happen! They also inspire me and make me a better person every day. I’m blessed to have them. I thank God for them. ❤
Are you open to the idea of collaborating with other singers and if so, who would be the singers of your choice?
Yes, absolutely! I think collaborations make an artist grow and be more open minded. I would like to collaborate with Mario Dom Singer from Camila, R&B singer Neyo and many, many more.
Are you a physical album or online digital album advocate (CDs or iTunes)? Why?
You can find my music on iTunes and other social networks. With so much technology and people using all these outlets, independent artists like me have our music career at the palm of our hands. It’s incredible how many people around the world we can reach. Best of it all is that it does not cost us anything! It’s all about networking, connecting and reaching out to people.
What else can we expect from you in the future?
Expect new music and a whole lot of growth. I’m on my way with an amazing team that believes in and supports this project.
If you’d like to find out more about Cindy Ortega, visit: