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Samantha LaPorta never really stood a chance; she was destined to become a pop star.  “There are quite a few professional performers and musicians in my family, ” she says. “It all comes pretty naturally for me.”

She has proof.  “My mom recently found some videos from when I was about two years old and in every video, I’m singing, dancing and putting on a show.   It's so funny to see!”

Radio Disney's newest teen queen started vocal and guitar lessons at ten years old and within a year, she had her first showcase at the Hard Rock in Nashville.

Since then, Samantha has been honing her skills as a musician and her newest single, “Own the Night,” which came out earlier this summer, suggests she is on the fast track to superstardom.  The song from the Pensacola, Florida native is a high energy, uplifting pop record that shows tremendous maturity for such a young singer.  

“In the beginning, I sang other writers’ songs, but for me, there’s nothing like singing my own words, thoughts and feelings.   It feels more authentic and there’s a real connection with fans,” she explains.

She co-wrote "Own the Night" a few months ago when she was hard at work, laying down vocals in a Los Angeles recording studio.  She was missing her friends at home and was thinking about what they would do when she returned. “I could picture us driving to the beach with music playing and the wind in our hair. ‘Own the Night’ became that song,” she says.  “It’s a hang-out-with-your-friends summer anthem.”   

When asked if she could have written "Own the Night" a year ago when she was 15, she responds, “I think songs happen at the time they’re supposed to.”  

She bases her songs on her current life experiences, because as she explains,   “I think the best person to write music for my age group is someone from my age group who really knows what we relate to.”

Samantha is back home in Pensacola for the summer and is enjoying her last few weeks of freedom before it’s time to hit the books again.  “I started homeschooling a year ago and I plan to continue and graduate early so I can focus more on music." 

New tracks are forthcoming and she’ll be touring later in the year which means, despite family members attending Manhattan School of Music and Juilliard, college will be put on hold for Samantha - at least for the time being.  She intends to follow in the footsteps of Julia Michaels, Alessia Cara and Meghan Trainor. 

“They are amazing songwriters and performers. Each has a unique way of expressing themselves in a fun way that says, “Hey, I’m not perfect but I’m okay with it.  

“That is real empowerment.”

Follow Samantha LaPorta on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.