Column: Sing to fly

TRL’s Angelina Mapes shares her musical journey


Courtesy of Angelina Mapes

“Ever since I was a young girl, I’ve been fascinated with music.”

I met her in a bathroom.

Ever since I was a young girl, I’ve always been fascinated by music. In an odd way, it made everything else seem easier. The beat of the kick drum, the raspy tone in the singer’s voice, the trill of the keys as the final note was played. It all just made sense to me. 

Music was in my family. My mom has always been my best friend, and I am always around her. So, her music choice really rubbed off on me the most. Everything from 50’s soul, to 90’s pop, to present-day top hits, my mother listens to it. Except for country. That’s where my dad came into play. Growing up on a farm, he only likes country music. The music my parents listened to swarmed our house. It entrapped me. It was impossible to not listen, to not be inspired. 

 “She was always singing! Do you know how parents will always say that their child was singing before they were talking? Well in Angelina’s case, that was true,” my mom said.

 When I was around 9 years old, my parents decided they needed to get me into something other than books. I have always found comfort in a good story, but I think it was because at the time. I didn’t do much else. Funny enough, a few days after my parents decided this, my mom saw an ad showing “Peter Pan Kids Edition” was having auditions, so they sent me down there singing “Popular” from “Wicked” as best as I could. Which if I have to be honest, could not have been that good back then. I got into the show, and another one after that, and another one after that, and so on for about two years. I started working with an acting coach who had sent me to this camp where singers and actors got to create some videos for content. 

On the first day of camp, I suddenly decided to make a music video. The leader of the camp had to ask my mom, and they had to bring in someone to record my vocals. Of course, I chose to sing “The Climb” because my siblings’ tv shows were still making me a Montana fanatic. 

I met her in the bathroom. 

That’s where the camp set me up to record, and little did I know that the woman I met in the said bathroom would become one of the most influential people in my life. 

She has this funny smile that she does, and she looked me dead in the eye and said, “You can sing. But you need to learn how to sing.” 

Brielle Pogue, my vocal teacher, had just been starting out her own business at the time, and the day that her studio opened up, I was first in line to sign up for her classes. 

As Brielle’s business started up, my mom continuously brought me down to Dallas every single day. I was usually there for different periods of time, but there wasn’t a day I wasn’t there at some point. It started off with taking a weekly vocal lesson. Then, I started piano lessons with my fantastic teacher Ben Fisher. Then it was songwriting, which I fell in love with instantly because it gave me a way to connect with all of the things that were going around and inside me. Then production, which took a while to get used to but I gradually have learned to love. Then social media, band class, practices, performances, and so many other elements in between. 

I can still remember the moments leading up to my first performance by myself. It was New Years’ Eve 2017, and me and the rest of my team members were performing at the restaurant bar in Frisco. I had been so nervous to go up, and once I got onto the stage the rest of the performance was blank to me. The next thing I remember, was coming off the stage with this feeling of freedom. I felt like I had been flying, and now I had come down to Earth. I always want to feel that way. There have been a lot of ups and downs throughout my entire time performing. There have been times where I have wanted to give up, but I think back to how I met Brielle. It was such a random coincidence. I mean come on, we met in a bathroom. I always think that there is a reason for everything that happens and meeting Brielle that day. I think it was the way the universe was telling me what I needed to do to make every day feel like I’m flying.