Photographer: @Joecudjoe

Photographer: @Joecudjoe

Hello I'm Ori, Nigerian American lifestyle blogger and career consultant encouraging you to live boldly. Be original. 

Carolina Peláez | Artist

Carolina Peláez | Artist

Tell us about yourself

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My name is Carolina Pelaez and I am 23 years old. I was born in Miami and raised in Silver Spring, MD. My parents are from Cuba and are both classically trained musicians; my father is a pianist and my mother is a guitarist. I have a brother two years younger than me who is also a musician. I am currently a member of a band called Awaken Wells and am a worship leader for a regional youth gathering called The Roar DMV. I also just released my debut EP in May called Garden which was produced in Redding, CA by producer Jeff Schneeweis. 

Where did your love for music stem from? 

Being as though both of my parents are musicians, I grew up listening to music and was surrounded by it all my childhood. My parents were professional musicians and were always practicing for performances. I watched them perform and practice and knew that music was a part of me as well. I was raised in a constant atmosphere of music which nurtured and sparked my desire to pursue singing. At a young age I started to sing and dance. I would sing with my mother in church and cultural events. Later on I participated in choir and vocal ensembles in school and took some vocal training for about a year in high school. My family’s background in Cuban and Classical music has definitely shaped my musical style and taste. As I started getting more involved with church in middle school, I was introduced to worship music which heavily impacted my writing. 

You have such a beautiful voice, why did you choose to dedicate it to worshiping God?  

I fell in love with God when I encountered the Holy Spirit in 7th grade. I then knew that I wanted to serve Him and wouldn’t be happy doing anything else. The best way I knew to serve Him at the time was through worship and singing. The more I did that at home and at church, the more I realized that leading worship was my calling and purpose here on this earth. He gave me my voice, anointing and talent and I feel the most myself when I can use that form of expression to communicate to God. 

How do you manage your musical career, and life's basic responsibilities? 

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My life is centered around music and worship but I also have two part time jobs, a family, friends, a significant other and other responsibilities. It can be very hard to juggle all those things at times but somehow The Lord gives me grace and wisdom to manage all the beautiful gifts He has given me. It’s all about stewardship. I have learned to steward and nurture the little that I’ve had which has prepared me to manage the bigger things that God has placed in my life. I also consider myself a pretty organized person and I enjoy planning my week. I also have learned the art of saying “NO” which has helped me leave room in my schedule for what’s priority and important. 

What advice would you give to young artists who want to follow their dreams, but feel constricted by reality? 

My biggest advice would be to TAKE RISKS! God has not given us a spirit of fear! I love The Message version of 2 Timothy 1:7 which says“God doesn’t want us to be shy with His gifts, but bold and loving and sensible.” It is clear that God wants us to be confident in the dreams He has given us; He believes in them more than we do! Just keep your eyes on Jesus and believe that He will guide you in fulfilling your dreams because He was the one who placed them in your heart. At the same time, seek wisdom and advice from those you look up to and who are more experienced in what it is you want to accomplish. 

What makes you original?

Because of my versatile musical background, my songs I believe express a combination of musical styles which make it original and unique. I think my songs incorporate influences such as classical music, pop, soul, folk, rock, indie and worship. I don’t like to be confined to musical categories and seek to make music that is inspired by God and speaks to me despite what musical rules I may break. A combination of all those things along with my unique personality, experiences and relationship with God contribute to my originality. 


Garden - EP 


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