We had the good fortune of connecting with Cheyenne Benton and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Cheyenne, what led you to pursuing a creative path professionally?
I always secretly wanted to pursue music for as long as I can remember, but I didn’t really have people who prioritized creativity in my life growing up – I went to a relatively small school for the majority of my childhood that lacked artistic programs and really pushed sports. I was never athletic and never felt as though I fit in among that crowd. My freshman year I switched schools and joined an extra curricular theater program, and suddenly I was surrounded by tons of artistic individuals, and it opened my eyes to the reality that pursuing a creative career wasn’t such an outlandish thing. It’s a reality a lot people make work, and many actually thrive in the artistic fields. Being surrounded by that group of people ultimately helped me build the courage to breakaway from the fears I had surrounding music and following my calling, and after I graduated high school I just sort of jumped in.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
What sets me apart from the rest is my insatiable need to openly feel and express myself in the ways that feel right to me. My big stupid heart can get me into a lot of messes, but I have this weird ability to be able to turn the wreckage into something beautiful, and I think at the end of the day that’s valuable and it’s something I don’t give myself enough credit for. I think as an artist of any caliber, the journey is long and never ending. I feel like I’ve come quite a long way, but I’m light-years away from where I’d like to be. I’m trying to learn to slow down a bit and really enjoy the process and the ebb and flow of creating. One of the biggest challenges I struggle with as an artist is trusting myself and my inner voice. I’m still figuring out how to find the balance of being able to take constructive criticism without compromising my authentic vision. Learning to say “no” and not feel guilty about it, and trust that I know what’s best for me – because at the end of the day, we all know what is best for us deep down if we take the time to get quiet and really listen. I want the world to know that it’s okay to be who you are – if that means being loud and colorful and taking up space, take it. Don’t let anyone make you feel small for expressing yourself. That’s what you’re here to do.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
If it wasn’t COVID times – I would take them to my favorite coffee shop down in North Park – Communal Coffee. It’s right next to a plant nursery I love as well. In the evening we would go to my absolute favorite bar – Campfire in Carlsbad. After a few drinks we could run along the beach at midnight.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I wouldn’t be who I am today without my incredible group of friends who have become more of a family to me over the years. I’ve struggled with feeling out of place for most of my life, but the first time I remember feeling really accepted wholeheartedly was when I met them doing shows in high school. Throughout the years we have managed to miraculously stay in touch and grow together – the majority of us pursuing creative fields – and it’s something really special to see them each blossom, flourish, and create. They’re always there for me, ready to jump in and help on any project I need a hand with, and I try to do the same for them. I will always feel grateful for them – no matter what side of the globe we all eventually end up on.
Other: Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/artist/3kulsLvu2CrpfHhc3tV5Jl?si=hYrOY_HvSxKg8BqQ6VCxkA
Michael Lopez, Stefan Stojanovic