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Hilltop Views

The Student News Site of St. Edward's University

Hilltop Views

The Student News Site of St. Edward's University

Hilltop Views

Freshman musician continues her passion for music at St. Edward’s

Colby Fountain / Hilltop Views
Tatianna Holdman AKA “Tatianna Cabana” poses for a photo in the audio recording rooms in Munday Library.

Tucked away in the Munday Library at St. Edward’s University, I met Tatianna Holdman.This incoming freshman shared her personal and musical journey, providing a glimpse into her hopes for the campus’ evolving creative community and academic portfolio.

St. Edward’s is home to a wealth of talented dreamers, and Holdman shines brightly among them. Under the moniker Tatianna Cabana, her music—a sublime blend of RnB with elements of alternative pop—paints a unique sonic landscape that feels ethereal, intimate and conversational. 

Holdman started making music about five years ago and has had to balance her passion with the demands of military life. 

“It’s been a bit on and off because I was in the military so it was really hard to find that balance of making music while also, like, being deployed and always going out to sea and always having a huge workload,” Holdman said.

The military environment, with its stringent structure, posed challenges for her creativity.

“For me, it was really hard to even be creative because the military is so ‘this is how you’re supposed to think’, ‘this is how you’re supposed to be’ so it was really hard to find myself and be creative while I was there in the moment,” Holdman said.

Despite these challenges, her songwriting process remains both emotive and organic. 

“Usually how I write my songs is I’ll find a beat and then based [on] how that makes me feel then I’ll write to that,” Holdman said. 

Holdman’s tracks, from “Summer 2010” to “Let You Go”, serve as chapters in her musical storybook. Her narrative, rich with themes of love, identity and evolution, engages listeners in a deeply personal dialogue. Her discography follows a certain narrative arc, almost telling a story of love in its most realistic form, even through to the entropy of those feelings. Everything feels natural, like a living breathing musical journal of this artist’s life, which is often the recipe for the most compelling songs. 

Discussing the authenticity and directness in her music, Holdman revealed her struggle with expressing deep emotions. 

“I find it really hard to communicate with people and express how I feel, and I feel like I’m able to do that in my music,” she said. “I just lay it all out there and then also I’m not talking to them face to face so I can say exactly what I want to say and how I want to say it without feeling that pressure.”

While her inspirations strike in various settings, there’s one place in particular that acts as a creative through-line for her and fuels her creativity. 

“Usually when I’m in the car, that’s when I’ll get the most inspiration,” she said. “I don’t know why but that’s when inspiration hits me the most.”

Holdman addresses the need for more structured academic resources on campus, especially within a campus that is brimming with creatives.

“A lot of creatives hit that wall where there’s only so far they can go on their own and they need that support system,” she said. 

She further emphasized the potential benefits of a music program. 

“(It) would benefit a lot of people because for some reason I’ve met a lot of people on this campus who make music,” Holdman said. “They need that outlet to help them grow as artists and as people. I think it would honestly benefit a lot of people and also people who don’t know that they have that creative side to them yet. It would open up that door.” 

For those eager to delve into Holdmans discography, her music is accessible on most major streaming platforms, including Apple Music and Spotify. Simply search for her stage name, “Tatianna Cabana,” to discover and enjoy her unique blend of RnB and alternative pop. Whether you’re a devoted fan or a curious newcomer, her tracks promise an immersive experience.

As St. Edwards contemplates the future of its creative ecosystem, Holdman offers a clear vision of that future and an invitation to her fellow Hilltoppers. 

“Let’s get together and let’s create,” she said.

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