When future generations of Peruvian-American artists congregate, singer-songwriter Auggie Velarde's name will always be uttered in awe. In fact, he is already the embodiment of the American dream and proof that dreams do come true.
At a young age, Auggie and his family moved to the US. They had nothing else with them but big dreams for the future. As a child, Auggie was told that anything was possible if he set his mind to it. Around the same time, he fell in love with music and discovered the internet. Unbeknown to anyone else at that time, his future was set in motion.
Due to his family background, Auggie's dreams of making music were hard to actualize fully. He had to pick a "serious" career, but his passion for music was not easy to discard. As a result, he found himself living a double life of sorts - working at his day job and making music under a series of aliases.
Technology came to his rescue once again. As he explored the internet, he discovered how well technology intersected with art. He took his exploration further and taught himself how to code. Behind computers, he got anonymity and an opportunity to advance his creative aspirations.
After a while, though, making music as a side job stopped being enough. Auggie decided he had lived for others long enough and that it was time to choose his happiness. Speaking of the experience, he says, "I disconnected myself from everything that was holding me back from my pursuit of happiness. I quit my job, left toxic people, broke bad habits. It wasn't easy. I had a lot to lose but also a lot to gain."
Finally, he had found an actual purpose to live for. What people thought of him became less and less important. He adds, "Frankly, I think it might have been the most important decision I've made so far."
Along the way, Auggie's persistent efforts have been recognized multiple times. In 2018, he was awarded the TUMI USA award. It recognizes successful Peruvian immigrants who have overcome challenges, worked tirelessly at their profession, and demonstrated an exceptional commitment to community service.
In 2019, he was announced the winner of the Louder.me Summer League Final Tournament in 2019. The following year, he emerged the winner of the Château Éphémère and Groover's "From Bed Production to Stage" Electronic Music Residency Program.
And then, recently, he was featured as the cover of TIDAL's "Trap del Sur" editorial playlist. Soon after, he was featured on SoundCloud's home page as a selected artist for LatinX month.
Despite achieving these big milestones, Auggie's journey is just beginning. Over the years, different artists have influenced his music. He hopes to one day work alongside the people he considers his heroes. "I feel like the blend of all these genres with masters of their craft would become a source for a ton of innovative musical experiments," he says.
Besides doing what he loves all the time, Auggie also wants to help others along the way. In a few years, he hopes to be performing in his home country of Peru. Ultimately, he hopes he will eventually pave the way for a future generation of Peruvian artists and immigrant creators. If his current successes are anything to go by, we can safely conclude that his dreams will definitely come to pass.