A capella singer determined to pursue music career

Junior Alexa Doll rehearses her song on the piano.

Ava Yungbluth | The Chronicle

A note-worthy student at Mason High School (MHS) is a rising star in the songwriting industry.

Some students involved in choir programs at MHS have chosen to take their singing talents to more professional measures. One student, Junior Alexa Doll, is a music artist that has crafted songs of her own while being part of the NoteOrious a capella group.

After attending a Charlie Puth Concert in 2018, Doll found her passion for music. Doll said that she has always enjoyed music, but after witnessing him on stage performing, she was mesmerized. She became determined to one day become a performer like Puth. 

“When I saw [Puth] on stage, I was amazed,” Doll said.” I wanted to do it so badly; I was like, ‘I want to be the next Charlie Puth, I want to be just like him.’”

After realizing her passion, she got straight to work. Doll signed up for voice and piano lessons to better her understanding of music. She later joined ‘NoteOrious’, which provided the right resources and people needed to create openings to begin writing her own songs. Between her choir teachers, piano teacher, and fellow a capella singers, Doll was provided with a support group necessary for her song creation. 

“My dad bought me a keyboard,” Doll said. “I started taking piano lessons and voice lessons, and then I just started writing my own music from there.”

Doll has built up a routine for her songwriting process. In the beginning, Doll plays chords on the piano and begins to hum a melody until it sounds satisfactory. The lyrics of a song, however, do not come right away. This includes figuring out how to put feelings into words and making the words rhyme.

“For me, lyrics are the hardest thing,” Doll said. “I [have struggled] with coming up with things that make sense and that actually rhyme, but that also fit my melody line.”

‘Picture Perfect’ is the title of Doll’s first original song. In her song, she wanted to address the unrealistic beauty standards that have become more of a norm.

“In society today, if you’re a teenage girl, you want to look perfect all the time,” Doll said. “I wrote a song based on a lot of people in my life that I just want to yell at and [tell them they] don’t always have to be picture perfect. [They’re] worth it [and they’re] not defined based on how [they] look.”

Doll said writing music is like expressing feelings from a new perspective that one cannot hear over a regular conversation. She not only speaks through the lyrics she writes but through the chords that she utilizes in her songs to set a tone. Doll said while some people may have their own ways of showing how they feel, it registers best in her brain through song. 

“I just thought it was so cool how you can interpret feelings in such a different way,” Doll said. “I’m not good at explaining things but if you put it to lyrics and music, everything just makes more sense to me.”

Throughout the entire process, Doll said that she is most proud of the three demos she has recorded so far. The biggest struggle, however, was putting the demos and her voice out into the world; she started by showing her new song to her fellow singers in a capella.

“Accepting the fact that people are going to have to hear [my songs], it’s a vulnerable thing,” Doll said. “[Putting] it out there and having other people hear what you created, it’s scary.”

Every year, ‘NoteOrious’ records an album compiled of the songs they sang throughout the year and releases it on streaming platforms. Doll’s song, ‘Picture Perfect’, will be featured on the album. She hopes to utilize this opportunity to get her work to the public and showcase what she loves to do.

“Writing the song for [NoteOrious] would really help me. I think that’d be a really good way to advertise something that I created,” Doll said. “I had to do all the arrangements and I composed all of it, so I think that’d be a good way to get people to notice what I’m doing.”

Doll wants to show the public that music is her calling, and she wants to inspire whoever listens to her music. She hopes to pursue a future career that includes music production to continue her growth in the songwriting and performing industry.

“Even if I don’t make it big, I just want people to hear my music,” Doll said. “I just want to be able to live off of making music. All I want in life at this point is to make music for the rest of my life, because that’s what makes me happiest.”

Photo by Ava Yungbluth