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#IAMDYNAMITE’s Iris Q&A

We’re so excited to introduce you to our second profile for #IAMDYNAMITE, which is an inspiring movement showcasing hard-working women following their dreams. Meet Iris Campo, singer, songwriter and drummer.

You started singing and drumming at a young age but when did you know you wanted to make this your career?

It’s really difficult for me to know when exactly I knew I wanted to do this for a living. It was a very natural, innate thing for me. I started playing percussions and doing school performances around the age of 3 and I always loved performing. So I think I always knew. I probably realized that I could make this my career when I started high school.

It’s not that common to see female drummers – what made you pick it up?

I started playing percussions at a very early age so playing drums was a natural progression. The second I sat behind a drum set for the very first time, I started playing and I instantly fell in love.

Did you run into any issues trying to make it as a female drummer? How did you overcome them?

I went to an all-girl high school and that’s when I started drumming so my gender was never an issue. I think that’s what made me even more confident as a female drummer and artist. Every band that I’ve been in after that were all male bands and I never ran into any issues because I was a girl. I mean, I definitely raised a few eyebrows and some people were skeptical until they heard me play.

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You went from being in a rock band to a solo pop artist. Is this the path you always envisioned?

This is another thing that happened naturally. ROADS broke up and I just started writing songs. I always saw myself singing and drumming so what I’m doing now is perfect. It’s such a cool learning experience going from being a drummer to being the lead singer of my own project. It’s an incredible challenge, I love it.

Do your Spain roots influence your music?

Definitely! Traditional Spanish music is heavily rhythmic and melody-oriented. I’m a sucker for harmonies and intricate beats.

What advice would you give to young aspiring female artists?

Work hard. Don’t let anyone tell you that you can’t achieve your goals and dreams, especially because of your gender. Not everyone has the same drive as you. It’s crucial to surround yourself with people who share the same vision as you. If they don’t, you have to let them go, as hard as it may be sometimes.

What do you hope to accomplish in the next 10 years?

Well, I hope to be able to tour the world and share my music with as many people as possible and to be able to live comfortably off my music. I try to create timeless songs and hopefully they will still be relevant in 10 years time!

What impact did being diagnosed with ulcerative colitis have on your career and lifestyle? How did you overcome it?

Ulcerative Colitis almost killed me and it made me realize a lot of things. From what really matters to who/what I should focus on or eliminate from my life in order to be healthy, mentally and emotionally. I’m also way more aware of my health, I listen and I respect my body more than I ever did. Music is one of the main things that kept me going while recovering. Writing my own songs and being able to perform them now is part of my recovery and my victory! So it’s a daily reminder of how lucky I am to not only be alive and healthy but also to be doing what I love most.

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I heard you’re a huge animal lover and fight for animal rights. Tell us a little bit about your love for animals.

Animals are the most amazing creatures on Earth. They don’t willingly cause any harm to anyone or the planet. I think it’s revolting that in this day and age cosmetics are still tested on animals. There are humane ways of testing ingredients instead of hurting and killing innocent creatures. Same goes for leather, fur and wool. There’s nothing fashionable in my opinion in flaunting dead animal parts to keep ourselves warm or to look good. So, I hope to have enough exposure to educate people about the importance of supporting cruelty-free products and to help end animal cruelty altogether.

You’ve got a busy lifestyle. What do you like to do on your down time?

I love relaxing at home with my kids (my cats, ferrets and birds) and binge watching series on Netflix.

How do you describe your personal style?

I would say my personal style is very rock-inspired. It’s a mixture of Steven Tyler’s bohemian-rocker feel (gotta have my leopard print!!), Michael Jackson’s bad-assness with a touch of Freddie Mercury’s flamboyance.

I am Dynamite because ________.

I am unstoppable!

QUICKIES:

Song on repeat right now: “Old 45’s” by Chromeo
Up & coming musician we should check out: Royal Canoe
Favorite instagram account to follow: @natgeo
Favorite music festival: Osheaga
Favorite female singer: Oh man… I can’t possible just choose one! Stevie Nicks, Karen Carpenter (who was also a killer drummer!), Anni-Frid & Agnetha (ABBA) and Katy Perry (especially during the Teenage Dream era) rock my world.
Artist you’d love to collab with: Steven Tyler/Aerosmith. Or Phil Collins. Or Haim.
First job: Customer service and cashier at HMV
Dream city to perform in: London
Guilty pleasure: Driving around town while singing my heart out to Backstreet Boys. But I’m not ashamed of it, so does that count as a guilty pleasure?