Los Angeles-based singer and songwriter, Leah, has accomplished so much that out of disbelief (In a good way!), you can’t help but read her biography over and over again. She has performed in all sorts of music related events, including choirs, musical productions, piano and cultural recitals, dance competitions, and school bands. Her passion for music began since the young age of 10 and, according to Leah, blossomed after the unfortunate passing of her father. Since his passing, music has been an inseparable part of her life.
“Music allowed me to heal, and at the same time, unbeknown to me, I was able to embrace my musical talents,” said Leah. “Moreover, education was a must in my household. My mom was very strict on that! So, I’m thankful for that today. I stand as an educated, independent woman pursuing her dream of music.”
And, taking advantage of her innate talents as a musician, she has achieved what many can only dream of.
She has had the chance to perform John Rutter’s “Magnificat” at New York’s Carnegie Hall. Then in 2002, she transformed herself into recording artist, Pink, on the MTV show, “Becoming.” And, you may also recognize her voice from songs she has licensed to MTV shows, like “Cribs,” “True Life,” and “My Super Sweet 16.”
Some look at her musical career and are amazed to see just how much she has accomplished. Some would say it was meant to be for Leah – “ to gain so much success in her career in such a short period of time. And, according to Leah, she, too, has always felt that becoming a musician was “inevitable.”
I certainly have my moments where I feel my ethnicity is a handicap, but most of the time I try not to think about it. It definitely helps when you see acts like Jasmine Triaz, Marie Digby and Meg & Dia.
“Yes, I love to sing and, yes, I love to write songs, but performing – “ that is my guilty pleasure,” stated the San Francisco native. “To be able to share my soul through music and hearing the reaction from the crowd, there’s no other feeling like it. Performing on stage is, as one describes it, “probably the closest to a holy experience that I can imagine’.”
Although it has been a great ride for Leah, there have also been bumps in the road, just like any other musician would experience. However, Leah has never seen those obstacles, particularly relating to her ethnicity, as major roadblocks to doing something she has been ardent about for so long. According to the musician, her motivation has always been from both God and her family, which has helped her stay true to her love of music.
“I certainly have my moments where I feel my ethnicity is a handicap, but most of the time I try not to think about it,” said the Filipina singer. “It definitely helps when you see acts like Jasmine Triaz, Marie Digby and Meg & Dia who have successful careers. This is a new era for independent musicians and, hopefully soon, I’ll be able to share my music with the world on a larger scale. I’ve definitely had an overwhelmingly positive response from the American public and it’s a sweet surprise.”
And, sweet it has been for the young singer.
In 2006, Leah officially began working on her EP under Bendiksen Productions. Currently, Leah has been working hard writing new songs and collaborating with many people in preparation of releasing new music for a full-length album.
For Leah, it has been non-stop work and fun, but even today Leah says it all still feels “so surreal.”
“I still can’t believe I released a CD that people actually like or that I have my own music video!” stated the singer. “It’s really amazing. It definitely has been an incredible journey, but I still have a long ways to go in completing my goals. The most I can do is live one day at a time and take advantage of each opportunity as it comes.”
With such great modesty, perseverance, and, of course, talent, you can’t help but say that Leah definitely rocks.
Currently, Leah is performing throughout Southern California. For information on upcoming gigs, to listen to Leah’s music and for more information about her, please visit www.leahrocks.com and www.myspace.com/leahrocksmusic.
You may contact the writer at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Photography by Brie Childers