From Scholar To Songwriter, Screenwriter: AMEA Goes Beyond Her Lyrics

Jun 8, 2017

Credit Courtesy photo

AMEA is a singer with no boundaries. Whether it’s her style of music or her writing, she has an original flair that is evident in every song that she performs. Her musical journey started here in San Antonio, where she came to earn a Master’s degree in Sociology at UTSA, and then took off after collaborating with local artists.

The young artist roots herself in artists such as Miguel and Frank Ocean, who upon hearing them, gave her the inspiration to start recording. “I heard Frank Ocean’s album, 'Channel Orange,' and I knew had to write. Then I heard Miguel’s album, 'Sure Thing,' and I knew I definitely had to get into music. So I got a microphone and just recorded while music was coming out of a stereo, since I didn’t know how to mix at the time. [It was a] hot mess!” she laughs.

After collaborating with her peers at UTSA and giving mini concerts in the Sombrilla, AMEA got serious with her performances when she worked with Devin Mathers, another local San Antonio artist. “That’s kind of how I got started in San Antonio with this group of people; they really pushed me to get into music, entertainment wise, not just chilling at home.” Collaboration, in her eyes, is the key to starting out as a musician. Theo Malone, her bassist/guitarist, was brought on to the band after he met AMEA through a common connection. She credits her success to the collaborative environment of the San Antonio music community. “I feel like I wouldn’t be the musician I am if I wasn’t in San Antonio.”

AMEA and Theo Malone in the TPR studios.

In our small B40 studio, AMEA fills the room with her refreshing vocals and chill freestyle, making you feel like you are seeing her perform at some hip coffee shop in New York. 

I wish, that this, dream world

That you, dream of, was realistic,

So, you can have your, dream world

I will, help you, help you build it

AMEA’s degree in sociology helped her connect with others using not only what she learned in class, but the connections she formed with her peers as well. “It made me a stronger writer. I have been writing since the 8th grade, but it was mostly fairy tales and cheesy stuff. [Sociology] really helped me understand people and how they might be hearing this as a way of therapy. I really had to put meaning into each lyric since it would probably be broken down bit by bit by someone, so I had to make sure that every line means something, and that they could get the therapeutic sense from it as well.”

As far as knowing what to write, AMEA says she just follows her intuition. “Even with something simple such as 'VayCay...' I really hated that beat when I first heard it because it sounded so repetitive and I wasn’t used to that style. So honestly I just follow my spirit. Wherever it leads me. I know it sounds simple but it’s true." This intuitive attitude is present in the song, with lyrics that anyone can connect to, as we have all gone through similar experiences. 

I need to clear my mind, center my soul
but you don't understand this ain't about you (this ain't about you)
You say you need new space, time to erase all the pain
and this aint about me (this ain't about me)

In addition to writing song lyrics, AMEA plans on having her ideas projected on screen. “I’m a writer. I write screen projects some times, and I have a very vivid imagination. I love documentaries, and I also love parodies. I have a nice little group of people who want to start on these kinds of projects, so short films, essentially."

Her message, Inspire Love Dream, is featured in each of her pieces. “I know that sounds cliché,” she laughs. However, this motto has driven her to achieve her dreams since college. “I played basketball my whole life since like age four. So when I went to the University of Dallas, I said if I can play basketball in college, then I won’t regret anything. But when I got to college I realized I didn’t really like college basketball, but I was just like, ‘I made it here; this far, so anything is possible if you put your mind to it. So in any aspect of my life, even from my love life to my career, I feel like if I can inspire myself to believe in love, I can achieve any dream.” Even though it gets tougher for her as she ages to follow her message, she faces every trial knowing that it inspires her to stay in music and collaborate with others artists.

Overall, AMEA wants her listeners to know that “It’s important to have feelings and to just live. You have to feel to live and that’s ok. And you can move on and still be strong.”

Check out her latest EP, 'Baggage Claim,' on Spotify, Soundcloud, and AppleMusic.