We had the good fortune of connecting with Melissa Hernandez and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Melissa, looking back, what do you think was the most difficult decision you’ve had to make?
The most difficult decision was switching from a career-driven by family versus passion. I’ve learned several great lessons from my dad, many of them about life in general and the value of hard work. I’ve also learned quite a thing or two about playing guitar, reading music notes, and listening to my dad’s favorite artists since my dad is the reason I started. My dad taught me that learning music would be part of my life forever. To him, it was like breathing. I am so grateful for the music and the treasured lessons he taught me. The most significant and life-changing experience in my life was when my dad passed away four years ago. I decided to take a break because My father has supported my music career from the very beginning. Ever since he passed away, No one has supported my career, but I realized My dad always told me if I love what I’m doing and I’m having fun, just continue to do it! I decided to continue because music is something to live for. It is just for me. nobody else can take away from me. it makes me so happy and I can rely on it completely. it’ll always be there ! After all, it allows me to be expressive and creative. It relieves the stress and pressures of life and takes me away from reality for a little while. Music is not an unnecessary part of life. It helps me process my thoughts and allows me and others to connect with other people emotionally.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
When I was four years old, I started playing piano, drums, and guitar. I can play a musical instrument, which has benefited me in many different ways throughout the past several years. I can read music notes, which makes it possible for me to play my drums and guitar and play the piano if I want to. My memory has increased because a lot of repetition is used, and most music instructors make my mind memorize the music. By the age of 8-12, I started to make music, record, write songs, and so much more. When I was 20 years old, I got into a program called NYU X Billboard. I had a fun experience getting to know 3 Producers who worked with different artists, NYU Professors, celebrity vocal coach , Artist Manager and so much !! I also received an award from them. A few months later, I got work with SITM ( She Is The Music ) .. helping all women working in music – songwriters, engineers, producers, artists, and industry professionals. Over the summer, I got a job as a music programmer at SiriusXM. It was a fun experience! Responsible for the processing, storage, and playback of sound effects and music in the game. Also, write the software tools and utilities to support the sound and music. Before summer ended, I got an email from billboard & I got an opportunity to go to Latin Music Week !! Again, it was a fun experience. I got the chance to have conversations with artists, producers, doing workshops, showcases, and performances with Latin’s top hitmakers, actors, influencers, and industry leaders. Also I got the opportunity to go Billboard Latin Music Awards. I’m currently in the recording academy program called Grammy U . Grammy U is run by the Recording Academy and aims to support and prepare college students to enter the music industry. I instantly found a community of like-minded people in a similar stage of life, all pursuing their passions. The music industry is not always as glamorous as it seems, but if you have the power and drive, you are sure to carve your own space within it. Also, I work at campus NCC WHPC 90.3 as a radio host. My job introduces and discusses genres of music; hosts a talk radio show that may take calls from listeners; interviews celebrities or guests; or gives news, weather, sports, or traffic information. Also, broadcast live or use voice-tracking techniques. Music is my life is the necessary stimulus that helps to achieve the goals I set. I’m really looking forward to seeing what life brings to me.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I would take my best friend on adventures in Montauk to do great activities such as parasail, go to Montauk lighthouse, and a farm called Lavender By the Bay, bringing together their agriculture and art interests to create a beautiful lavender farm on the north fork. Having a best friend is like having your little corner of the world to escape.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
A big shoutout to my closest friends who stick with me through the tough time. I know I’m not always easy to deal with so from the bottom of my heart, Thank you for being my confidence boost and my reality check. My reassurance and my tough love. They are one of the few people in my life who has helped make me into what I am today. Thank you for that. Also I want to shout out to my family because my family supported me every step of the way during my journey through my mental health , my career , and more. The support of my devoted family is more precious than all the gold in the world. Just knowing they are there for me gives me the foundation I need to work through this tough time and get to a better place in my life.
Mona, Fatima Hernandez