In between her secondary education and history double major, University of Rhode Island junior, Claudia Sousa, is a singer-songwriter and self-taught guitarist in her spare time.

Originally, Sousa grew up playing the piano and learned to accompany herself with the piano while she sang. In high school, she said she picked up the guitar because she believed it gives singing “a cooler sound” and is a lot easier to carry around than a piano.

Sousa said that she thought about majoring in music in college, but always feared job security. Instead, on her own time, she is a singer-songwriter and guitarist.

Although she plays the guitar, she is more advanced in the piano.

As for singing, Sousa said that she has sang throughout all of her life, and cannot remember when she actually started. She considers herself an alto because she mostly enjoys singing in moderately lower tones and adding in a few falsetto notes. Sousa explained that singing has always been there for her no matter what because it allows her to express herself vocally rather than just instrumentally.

As a hobby, Sousa said she uses music as a way of getting through a rough day, and being in college comes with a lot of that stress that she needs to wear off. She says it can be very therapeutic after a long day of classes and homework, which she believes many musicians can agree with.

Sousa uses her singing covers as a method of gaining more followers and listeners, but she also writes her own original songs as well. Her style in music predominantly falls under acoustic and singer-songwriter because she includes a lot of her own melodies and lyrics. Sousa records on her own using a condenser mic and a mixer.

In total, she has a number of original songs such as “Vienna”, “New Years” and “M is for Movement”. She said that she tries to keep a variety of moods throughout her songs and have a good mix of everything such as “screw you break up songs” and “happy, good songs.”.

“Inspiration comes in moments with people, moments in nature, moments in life, and other different kinds of feelings throughout the day,” Sousa said. She said that anything around her serves as an inspiration and could pop up at any second, and if the moment is not written down then it could be lost forever.

“If I’m really happy, one line will pop into my head, and I can finish a song based on that,” Sousa said.

For the future, Sousa plans on obtaining a teaching job and possibly working gigs on the weekends, in hopes to not “let go that side” of herself. She said that right now, she is only performing solo because she doesn’t know any local musicians that would want to collaborate. If given an opportunity, she said she would love to write with others and see what kind of music they could create.

For future performances, Claudia can be spotted playing at the Musician’s Guild Open Mic Night next Friday, Nov.13. All of her original music is posted on the music sharing website, Soundcloud, under the name “claudiasousa”.