When Camylio turned 16, he was given a pivotal life decision: car or laptop? While many would have opted for the car, Camylio had bigger plans than simply driving…he was going to kickstart his career on YouTube.
Camylio has a powerful voice, one that’s meant to be shared with the world. He spent his journeyman days on social media platforms like YouTube and Twitch obsessing over song lyrics and learning how to produce music. And then… along came TikTok.
In November 2020, Camylio began posting his covers to the rapidly-growing video-sharing app. His technique was unique: post one video a day, set against the same backdrop, wear the signature oversized black hoodie, and sing your heart out.
Camylio’s powerhouse of a voice quickly gained the attention of the entire planet. His cover of Zayn Malik and SIA’s “Dusk Till Dawn” garnered over 7 million views right off the bat. Viewers began to buzz about Camylio’s simple, routine aesthetic and earth-shattering voice.
But it wasn’t until his rendition of SLANDER’s “Love Is Gone” - which accumulated 50 million views in under ten days - that Camylio found himself living the dream. On TikTok Talent is everywhere, but Republic Records could see that Camylio wasn’t just anyone.
He has hit singles like “I Tried” and he just released “amnesia” on October 28. Ballads are one of Camylio’s strengths. And this gut-wrenching song about heartache and moving on is completely raw and vulnerable. We all can relate to feeling loss when you realize that someone you once loved has move on.
Exclusively with PopDust, Camylio talks his new single - and more:
Camylio - Republic Records
With your latest release "amnesia" you get very personal - how has it been sharing your music with the world and being really vulnerable?
It’s honestly something that has always come pretty natural to me, for better or for worse. I think part of me just likes to feel "seen" and understood when it comes to my emotions.
What I really love about where I'm at now is that me being vulnerable is creating a community of people that now get to also feel understood when they listen to the songs because they've gone through similar things, and THAT… is why I do this.
Can you tell me more about the writing process for "amnesia" - was this a quick one or did it take a while to come together?
"amnesia" was by far the longest I've ever worked on a song. It started over Zoom in March of 2021 with two incredible writers/producers that I've looked up to for a very long time, Steven Solomon and Neil Ormandy. I remember leaving that Zoom session knowing it was special, but it took a little while for everyone else to feel that in the same way.
The Zoom only took 3-4 hours, but I did about 11 different production versions of the song over the next year and a half just refusing to give up on it. Ultimately, the last version connected on TikTok, then Steve did his magic and finished the production right before the end of September.
As a producer and songwriter - what comes first for you in the process? Is it the music or the lyrics?
Always the song and the lyrics. I think that's partly because of the style of music I make for my project. But the goal is always to write a song that can be produced 20 different ways and still feel special.
I'm also a big believer that the production should serve the song and the emotion in the song, so going backwards has rarely been the move for me.
In 2020 you broke through on TikTok - often we see artists either lean into the "social media" lane or try to separate themselves from it. How are you navigating taking your career from TikTok and onto the stage? Do you see TikTok remaining a part of your music going forward?
I think whether I want it to be or not, TikTok is going to play a pretty big role in my career and in most people's careers going forward.
Truthfully, I've never cared about the "stigma" of being a "TikTok Artist". Because at the end of the day, I think people can see through the surface level stuff and over time they truly connect with the artists that are truly being honest to themselves and to the art.
What's the best advice you've been given since starting your journey into music?
To bet on myself. Someone I've looked up to since I was 15 recently gave me some advice and it was to trust myself both musically, in a business sense, and in every other way you can imagine.
I've been guilty of this in the past, and I know a ton of people can relate, where you feel like you "know what you need to do." But you don't do it because you're getting advice from 30 different voices. And that's not to say "don’t take advice," but more so when you have a gut feeling about something, let it guide you.
What song have you had on repeat lately?
"Lose It All" by Sam Tompkins has been in my brain constantly for weeks. Tons of people will ask me "what song gives you 'song envy', what song do you wish you wrote," and right now my answer is definitely that one.
Who is your dream collaborator and why?
It's gotta be Ed Sheeran. I was the kid that fell in love with those first couple albums, bought the little Martin Guitar, and spent my high school years trying to reverse engineer a way to write songs that would make me feel the way his did. Getting to pick his brain would be a dream.
What can your fans expect next from you? - Tour / album / any new collabs?
Right now, I literally have a folder of like 30 songs, and those are just the "favorites." I don't know exactly what it's going to look like officially. But I do know that those songs tell a story. So for 2023 I think you can expect a ton of new music, and you can expect me to be a bit more of a storyteller.
You can listen to Camylio’s new single, “amnesia”, here: