Why Camila Cabello Wouldn't Take No For an Answer During The X Factor: "It's a Cuban Thing"

Singer talks with Lena Dunham about her journey into music and Fifth Harmony

By Diana Marti Jan 10, 2017 1:11 AMTags
Camila Cabello, 2016Marcus Ingram/Getty Images for iHeart

Give up? Camila Cabello would never.

The now ex-Fifth Harmony member, spoke on Lena Dunham's Women of the Hour, about the beginning of her career and growing up.  

"To be honest with you, I always say that I'm so grateful for that opportunity because I wasn't raised to become a part of the entertainment industry, like in my family people sing for fun. Like my grandma loves music, but there wasn't anybody that ever did this professionally. I came from a place where...It's wasn't like I came from LA or New York where there were people around you that were trying to make it, and it was kind of like people had a chance or a shot at success," the 19-year-old songstress said. 

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Cabello insists that it was a bit harder for her than most, because of where she was raised, "I came from Miami, completely Cuban family, like we immigrated from Cuba when I was like six years old. Nobody thought that there was a plausible like a shot or a chance at having success. I kind of always looked at that as a very far away thing."

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merry Christmas from my hella big hella latin family

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The singer opened up about days before her X Factor audition and how she didn't take no for an answer.

"When the X Factor came close to Miami, because the auditions were in North Carolina, it was my 15th birthday, and I wasn't going to have quinceañera, so I asked my mom instead if her present could be for her to drive up with me to the audition. And I actually auditioned because I was a huge fan of One Direction at the time, and I was like obsessed with them. They had uploaded a video on YouTube where they were giving tips to audition for X Factor USA and so I just had like five seconds of bravery, and so I auditioned, and I didn't make it, so they chose me as an alternate," she said. "So for two days I was right about to go audition, and they would tell me, 'Oh no. You can't audition. You might as well just go home.' I had my whole family there, and they were like, "We don't want to keep having you get disappointed. You might as well just go home.

While many would've just decided to listen to the show's employees, Cabello didn't give up so easily, especially because she wasn't raised to do so. 

"I was like, 'no, just give me a shot.' And so I ended up auditioning because they saw how badly I wanted it and how persistent I was--it's a Cuban thing. And so I got to audition, and I got four yeses, went to boot camp, didn't make it and was put in my group. I was so stoked; I was so excited that it wasn't over because I wanted to just keep going on that journey. It was like so new and exciting to me, and I was like a kid in a candy store."