Camila Cabello burst onto the music scene in 2017 with her hit single “Havana.” She followed it up with another chart-topping track, “Never Be the Same,” featuring Young Thug. Her debut album Camila dropped in 2018 and became one of the biggest selling albums of the year. The Spanish singer/songwriter now has three Grammy nominations under her belt, including Best Pop Vocal Album for Camila.
Early life and education
Cabello was born in the Havana neighborhood of Habana del Este, Cojímar, on December 16, 1992. Alejandro Cabello, a Cuban musician and singer, gave birth to her at home; he died four months later due to complications following heart surgery. Cabello grew up listening to music, especially Spanish pop and Latin American music such as cumbia, salsa, merengue, bachata, reggaeton, and rock en español, among others. At age five, she began taking piano lessons, and at six, she took voice lessons. In 2006, she enrolled in the Conservatorio de Música “Pedro Marrero”, where she studied classical guitar and vocals.
In 2009, Cabello moved to Miami with her mother and brother, where she lived with relatives until 2011, when she returned to Havana. While there, she sang in clubs and participated in talent contests. After returning to Miami, Cabello performed at local venues and received positive reviews from critics. In 2013, she signed with Sony Music Entertainment Latina and released her debut single, “Lloraré”.
She recorded her self-titled album, featuring songs written by herself and produced by Gustavo Santaolalla, in Los Angeles. Released on February 25, 2017, it debuted atop the US Billboard 200 chart, becoming Cabello’s first number one album in the United States. As of July 2018, the album had sold over 2 million copies worldwide.
Fifth Harmony member Camila Cabello has been gone since late November, but she won’t be forgotten anytime soon. In fact, the former Fifth Harmony singer/songwriter is already working on her next album. “I’m doing my thing right now,” she told Billboard about her solo career. “I’ve got some stuff coming out.”
The 20-year-old singer/songwriter revealed that she had recorded songs with several producers during the hiatus, including DJ Mustard, Cashmere Cat, Diplo, Stargate, and Pharrell Williams. While it’s still too early to tell what direction she’ll take, Cabello did say she’d like to keep things “fresh” and “new.”
Cabello’s debut single, “Havana”, was released on September 19. It’s the lead single off her upcoming debut album, set to arrive sometime next year.
In addition to releasing music, Cabello is also busy promoting her acting role alongside Jennifer Lopez in A.K.A., a film based on the life of Colombian pop star Shakira. The movie hits theaters on October 5.
2017–2018: Breakthrough with Camila
In November 2016, Camila Cabello signed a record deal with Epic Records, following several months of negotiations. She had been working since 2011 on her solo career, releasing three EPs, one mixtape, and collaborating with artists like Shawn Mendes, Justin Bieber, and Fifth Harmony. After signing with Epic, Cabello began recording material for her upcoming debut studio album.
On January 25, 2017, Love Incredible, a collaboration with American producer Cashmere Cat, leaked onto the internet. The official version of the track was released on February 16, 2017, and later featured on Cashmerön’s debut studio album, 33.
The Fate Of The Furious soundtrack was released on June 22, 2017, and features songs written by Diane Warren, Max Martin, Savan Kotecha, Shellback, Pharrell Williams, Jonas Jeberg, Tove Lo, and others.
Cabello announced the future release date of her first studio album at the end of May 2017, stating that it would be out sometime in 2018. In July 2017, she revealed that she had already recorded 15 songs for the project, including collaborations with Halsey, Khalid, and Travis Scott. At the same time, she confirmed that she had started working on the album during her hiatus from Fifth Harmony.
She stated that the album would feature “a lot of different sounds,” and expressed interest in incorporating elements of hip hop, R&B, pop, EDM, and dance music.
The healing. was released on December 2, 2017, along with the single “Havana.”
The loving. was released on April 5, 2018, and contains five tracks.
On October 9, 2018, Cabello announced her second studio album, Romance. She revealed the cover art and release date of the album on November 8, 2018. A week earlier, she teased the lead single, ” Señorita “, which was released on April 13, 2019.
The album peaked at number one on the US Billboard 200 chart dated May 11, 2019. It sold 96,000 album equivalent units, including 16,000 pure album sales, according to Nielsen Music. As of August 2019, the album had been certified platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA).
Romance received widespread critical acclaim upon its release. At Metacritic, which assigns a normalized rating out of 100 to reviews from mainstream publications, the album received an average score of 84 based on 36 reviews, indicating universal acclaim.
Cabello performed “Señorita”, “Liar” and “Never Be the Same” during the Super Bowl LIII halftime show.
2021–present: Cinderella, Familia and The Voice
Cabello released her third studio album,, on July 23, 2021. Titled, it features the singles “Don’t Go Yet”, “Familia” and “In My Feelings”. The former track serves as the album’s lead single.
On September 4, she performed “Don’t Go” live during the BBC Radio 1Xtra Live Lounge.
She later performed the song again at the Billboard Music Awards 2020 on May 20.
The singer also covered “Don’t Go” in Spanish at the Latin American version of the annual music festival Lollapalooza Brazil on August 13, 2020.
During the latter half of 2021 and into 2022, Cabello will star in an adaptation of Mary Poppins, based on the 1964 Walt Disney film of the same name.
Cabello is primarily known as a pop singer, but she also dabbles in R&B. She’s been compared to Ariana Grande and Adele, and her music has been described as having a “sweetness” about it. Her debut album, self-titled, came out in 2017, and it debuted atop the Billboard 200 chart. It sold over 5 million copies worldwide.
She recently announced plans to release another album later this year.
On Feb. 18, 2016, Cabello announced her partnership with Save the Children to launch a campaign called #LoveOnly. This initiative aims to empower young women around the world to break free from gender stereotypes and achieve their full potential.
The campaign features a special t-shirt designed by Cabello herself and it will be sold exclusively at select locations across the United States. Proceeds from sales will go towards providing educational scholarships for children in developing countries.
Cabello says the idea behind the project came about because she wanted to do something meaningful and impactful. She explains, “I’ve been very fortunate to travel the world and see how much people are suffering. I want to do everything I can to make sure no one else goes through what I did.”
In addition to the #LoveOnly campaign, Cabello is also partnering with the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) to help fund the organization’s work.
She says, “We’re working together to make sure we keep fighting for everyone’s rights. There are many things happening in our society today that aren’t fair and I’m here to fight for equality for everyone.”