[Exclusive Interview] Tessa Medina Explores the Stages of Young Adulthood in Her Debut EP "In Transit"

Ciera Reeves

Albums can serve as a medium for artists to express their emotions, experiences, and personal growth. In the context of young adulthood, this period of life is often characterized by self-discovery, navigating relationships, and exploring one's identity. Love, in particular, can be a profound and transformative experience during this stage.

An album that reflects on love and young adulthood might delve into various aspects of romantic relationships, personal growth, and the challenges and joys that come with transitioning into to adulthood. The songs may explore themes such as falling in love, heartbreak, self-reflection, independence, and the complexities of navigating intimate connections.

Through the medium of music, artists can convey their emotions, stories, and insights, providing listeners with a relatable and cathartic experience. The lyrics, melodies, and overall sound of the album can create a cohesive narrative that captures the essence of young adulthood and the multifaceted nature of love. "In Transit" the debut EP by Tessa Medina is just that.

Tessa Medina is a multifaceted artist hailing from New York City. Raised between the suburbs of Baltimore and Washington DC, she experienced a childhood marked by constant movement and transition due to her parents' divorce. Spending summers with her Filipino grandparents and shuttling between her mother's and father's households, Medina's environment was always changing. At 18, she ventured to NYC to pursue acting and journalism at New York University, finally experiencing the stability of a fixed home in her freshman dorm. 

Medina's passion for singing remained constant throughout her life, participating in choirs, leading a punk-rock band called 'Vices and Visions,' and performing in musicals. However, it wasn't until later that she discovered her unique sound. While in college, Medina's love for New York City and her trips back to Maryland to visit family kept her in transit, but it was music that provided her with grounding and inspiration. The struggles and adventures of city life shaped her distinctive style of songwriting, ultimately leading to the development of her personal sound.

KpopWise conversed with Medina to learn more about her journey to creating the album.  

Hi Tessa, so you have finally released your debut EP, can you tell us about "In Transit?" 

Released on May 19, 2023, "In Transit" is a collection of songs I wrote from my college years to now, emphasizing young adulthood being a very transitional period within my life. The EP contains a song for anyone in any stage of dating to relate to. Whether you're dealing with a player 'F-Boy,' facing the unfortunately common feeling of never being good enough 'Detour,' finally getting over a relationship you really thought could have been something great 'No Hate' or accidentally finding the fairy tail ending you almost gave up on 'John.'

‘In Transit’ is a mix between a love letter to my former self and a page from her present-day diary entry. It contains wistfulness, worries, and a whimsical warning to those still moving through their early years of adulthood. Even as I grow, some part of me will always be in transit. This EP is an encapsulation of this emotion.

Listen to "In Transit"

What inspired you to start writing music?

I started humming tunes before I could talk. It’s not that I was inspired to start writing music, it’s more so that the songs hit me out of nowhere and I can’t rest until I get them down on paper. It’s like an itch you can’t scratch until you do. 

What is your songwriting process like?

Along the lines of the above, sometimes I’ll be out and just start singing or humming to myself and I can hear an entire song start to form around 3 or 4 notes. So I’ll go home and explore what the rest of the song would sound like if I kept it going.

Other times I’ll be playing around on my guitar or keyboard and play something random that sounds interesting, then I’ll just keep playing it out. At that point lyrics typically start floating into my head and I match them up to the song. At the beginning I’m never quite sure if what I’ve gotten written in the first verse or chorus, so I keep playing around with more chords and lyrics until I find out.

What is your favorite song to write?

‘John.’ was my favorite song to write thus far because it’s the only song that was birthed from pure happiness. 

What are some of the challenges you face as an indie artist? What are the advantages? 

It’s super hard finding your target audience. In today’s age, people have SO many choices of what to listen to, you really need to be resilient in putting yourself out there. The good news is I get to be expressive as I want in my own time and medium. There’s no contract or ‘man’ I need to report to, I just get to make art that I like and I’m truly proud of.

Since we're reflecting on Youth a bit. What is your earliest memory? 

Picking mangoes in the Philippines with my Lola!

What advice would you give to your younger self? 

Be patient but foster your drive.

Are there any artists that you look up to? 

Taylor Swift (of course) is a songwriting genius! The pulse of Halsey music has been such a source of inspiration that I’ve looked up to.

Besides music, what hobbies do you enjoy? 

Love roller skating through central park in the Spring. I’m also an actress!

What are your plans for the future?

Continue making art in whatever form they manifest, especially with musical projects.


A special thank you to Tessa for the interview!

Follow Tessa Medina

Instagram @itstessadarling | @intransitep

Apple Music

Spotify Page 

YouTube @itstessadarling6160


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