Have you ever met someone that can channel their past experiences (both positive and negative) combined with hard work, talent, and perseverance to form the best version of themselves no matter the given situation? Then you must be introduced to Stephanie Nauli. Stephanie Nauli exemplifies strength, courage, and passion. Nauli is a talented recording artist, but she’s also highly accomplished in many others areas of her life. Stephanie faced many challenging moments growing up, but she’s become an example of overcoming obstacles to achieve your dreams. Mostly, Stephanie reminds you to “never give up and that you can be whatever, anything you want.” Her story is very inspirational and sharing it is an honor.
Nauli is a U.S. Army veteran, an incredibly talented recording artist, an entrepreneur, an author, and a philanthropist. As a philanthropist, she is a Peace Ambassador for the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation and has contributed time and resources to the Maranatha Children International non-profit organization in Africa. Where does she get her motivation and talent? She recently spoke with Gemma Magazine about her childhood, her musical ambitions, and her work ethic that has made her the strong woman she is today.
Hi Stephanie, you are so accomplished and talented. It’s a pleasure to interview you! What was your childhood like and do you consider your family supportive of your career as a singer?
Thank you, thanks for having me. My childhood was rough. We moved a lot throughout SoCal, and my mom was always working, hardly home, and my dad was also either working or out with friends. They were in their mid-twenties when they had me. People like to think that if you’re an “only child,” you must be spoiled and have it all, but. I started working under the table as a restaurant hostess at the age of 12, thanks to my good friend’s dad who owned the restaurant. I volunteered to help. So, he ended up paying me for it, and I moved up to waitress a year later and stayed for about 4-5 years before joining the Army.
My mom put me in a performing group called “The Esteem Team Fantastic Kids Club” in the 2nd grade, and we sang and danced old school classics like “Rockin’ Robbin” for executives of local Ford dealerships and the like. Middle School and high school were very similar but more competitive. We competed against other show choirs doing numbers like “Respect,” “Fever,” and “Popular,” and in high school, we had a record of winning 1st place at the Las Vegas Finals.
My family seems to enjoy my original songs and in good faith, expect success. Maybe it’s that cultural expectation.
Who inspired you to become an artist? Is it just within you?
My parents are both performing musicians who sing for social parties, gatherings, and church concerts. My dad has the talent to pick up any instrument and play it. My mom plays the guitar and the piano. Growing up, my mom put me in piano lessons since the age of 5 and would intentionally bring home KitKat bars to entice me into a singing lesson and reward me with a KitKat bar, after learning a new song.
Tell me a bit about your experience in the army and the decision to join.
I was tired of living the same life and wanted to challenge myself into something new and of higher service. I was 17, attending a community college at the time, and saw joining the Army as an opportunity to serve and be served with educational and health benefits, housing, and getting paid to stay physically fit. For me, it was the opportunity for new independence and freedom. I have this stubbornness of seeking the best of myself, and that helped me achieve the Soldier of the Quarter Award at Fort Bliss, Texas. It’s a competition that consists of knowing and understanding Army Regulations, core songs, weapons qualifications, and a physical fitness test. Winning the award got me on a training site banner, which I wasn’t informed about until I saw it. It was strange at first, but pretty cool. I won many ‘Performance of Excellence Awards’ as the 1st Armored Division’s National Anthem Singer, as well as in basic combat training, and advanced individual training, before that. Some would ask me what I was doing in the service and implied I should be in Hollywood or something, but I just took it as a compliment and nothing serious.
Do you feel the discipline you acquired in the army transferred to being so focused as an artist?
Absolutely. The discipline has channeled my stubbornness to good use. We were trained to put the mission first. Obstacles were never seen as an issue, only a challenge toward accomplishing the task. Everything I had to overcome has manifested a beautiful message in the form of my first significant song release “You Can Be” coming out in my very first EP on my birthday, September 9th.
What is your training as a singer?
My mom was my first coach, then she put me in vocal lessons from a credible opera singer in my community, and I grew up performing in several choirs, church and secular. You are also a successful entrepreneur.
You seem to have a sound business mind and a very creative side. You are the owner of an innovative company called Millennial Entertainment. Can you please expand? And What is the mission of Millennial Entertainment?
Millennial Entertainment, LLC is all about advancing the economy and shaping our future with the help of modern technology and community. Our goal is to help brands share their core message with their latest products through influencer marketing and distribution via social media and Spectrum, to audiences who care. I am the owner and Chief Marketing Officer of Millennial Entertainment, who oversees and guides the direction of all our current and future campaigns to ensure its effectiveness. We are developing new theatrical content for film and television, available for clients. We are also preparing for our first official event launch, which we will announce more in the new year.
You have an incredibly busy schedule and life. How do you juggle it all?
By God’s grace through faith, the Lord is my strength. I also use Grant Cardone’s 10X Success Planner. It helps me organize everything for progressive planning and action.
With such a beautiful voice, where do you see your career going as a singer? I see myself touring the world, performing and empowering fans through my music as an independent artist attached to my own record label, Millennial Entertainment, LLC.
Do you have any upcoming performances that we can look forward to?
I have some opportunities with upcoming charity events that will be announced later in the fall that I’m thrilled about so stay tuned!
If you were not affiliated with entertainment or the arts, what would you see yourself doing?
I would focus more on real estate and influencer marketing. Both involve business and creativity.
Stephanie has everything it takes to soar. She’s truly inspirational with a diverse and multifaceted background. We would like to thank Stephanie for taking the time to speak with Gemma. We are thrilled for her future endeavors.
To follow Stephanie on social media: instagram.com/stephanienauli