Breaking into the industry of your dreams takes discipline, hard work, and commitment — and sometimes that still isn’t enough to get you a seat at the table. When it looks like you’ve got the cards stacked against you there are only two options: give up and call it a day, or do what Doris Anahi Muñoz did as she tried to break into the competitive LA music industry.
“As you’re trying to claw your way throughout the industry, you’re hoping for someone to give you a seat at the table and then I realized that a woman like myself in the community that I come from, we have to build our own table. I had to create a space,” Muñoz says.
By betting on herself, Muñoz was able to create Casa Mija, a “free and accessible” mentorship program that focuses on creating opportunities for Black, Indigenous, and People Of Color (BIPOC) to enter the music industry and gain valuable industry insight while connecting with like-minded folks from their communities. Muñoz understands the importance of community, it has always been a driving force in her life, a motivator as well as something she could lean on in tough times.
“In the swirl and bubble of my career in the music industry developing, my brother was deported,” she says “We had a scare of a possible deportation happening with our parents and I wanted to do everything in my power to make sure that didn’t happen again. So I had this idea to organize a concert and try to raise enough money for my mom to at least get her paperwork started. I needed my community to back me up.”
Muñoz’s first concert was a success, which allowed her to throw a second and fully fund the necessary paperwork and legal services that would allow both of her parents to reunite with her brother safely. From that experience, Muñoz created Solidarity For Sanctuary, a non-profit that tasks itself with amplifying the voices of immigrant communities through music and advocacy for the arts nationwide.
“From there it just kept growing to help different community efforts,” she says. “Folks who needed to renew their DACA, to other folks that were directly in need, and then that’s when it grew on a national scale.”
To learn more about Doris Anahi Muñoz’s inspirational story, check out the video from the new Uproxx series AMÉRICA above.