Student musician releases album, preps for East Coast tour

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Student musician releases album, preps for East Coast tour

Courtesy of Gabrielle Secker

Courtesy of Gabrielle Secker

Courtesy of Gabrielle Secker

Courtesy of Gabrielle Secker

Story by Isabel Cosby, Managing Editor

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When she was 12, senior Gabrielle Secker picked up a guitar one summer and started playing, not knowing what was to come. Six years later, Secker has since released her own album, played gigs all over North Carolina and is now looking to pursue a career in music.

“The first thing I did was write a song. I didn’t learn a cover,” Secker said.

Secker, who goes by her stage name Gabrielle Sophia in the music world, began with writing country music and has since moved more towards indie rock. However, she more accurately describes her music genre as a mixture of freak folk and chamber pop. Secker also continues to write all of her own songs.

“I would say I am a lyricist before a musician,” Secker said.

Secker began performing in coffee shops and at open mics when she was 14 and now, at 18, she is planning to go on tour. During spring 2019, she will be branching out from her gigs in North Carolina while touring up the East Coast with one of her music mentors, Shealee.

“I took vocal lessons from her and used to play under her band, she’s releasing an album and so we’re going to do a tour,” Secker said.

One of Secker’s favorite gigs was her CD release party at the Evening Muse in June.

“[It] was crazy cool because it was probably the most people who were coming to see me specifically and it was the CD release so people were hearing the songs for the first time,” Secker said. “It was at the Evening Muse which is a place that I’ve played at a ton, I’ve done open mics, I’ve opened for people, but this was the first time that I was headlining there, so I had an opener for me which was kinda cool.”

Secker’s album, titled “Unhinged Peace,” is available on every music platform, including Spotify and iTunes.

“It’s not like I just recorded two songs and put it on SoundCloud, it was a year’s worth of work,” Secker said.

Working on an album did not stop Secker from writing, however.

“I feel like I’ve learned so much while doing [the album] that I was writing simultaneously while I was recording the songs that I had already written,” Secker said. “I got so much better that by the time I finished the album I was like ‘man, I have these five songs that I’ve written that are so much better from what I’ve learned.’”

In her song lyrics, Secker aims to create emotion without context.

“One of the lines of my songs is ‘pencil marks so smudged, parking lot tears’ which no one really knows what that’s about except for me, but then I’ll use the instrumentation to convey the emotion,” Secker said. “So things that people might not necessarily relate to, but can feel what I’m trying to convey.”

Not only does Secker excel in music outside of school, but she also participates in music at school when she can. Currently, Secker is enrolled in the IB Career Program for music and is a member of the East Meck Chamber Choir, the most advanced choir at East.

Secker is looking to pursue music after high school both in college and as a career. Currently, she is looking to go into songwriting programs with an emphasis on business, entrepreneurship, recording and production.

“I don’t necessarily want to do something else and do music on the side since that’s what I’ve been doing in high school, I want to do what I love in college,” Secker said.

Secker is not one who cares for large-scale fame, but she still wants to be able to support herself as a full-time performer in the future.

“My dream would be to be a performer full time,” Secker said. “I want to have a big enough fanbase where people will come to my shows and know my songs. If that happens, I’m completely happy.”