Consuelo Vanderbilt Costin: “People that fight for the truth and who fight for justice are true heroes to me”

People that fight for the truth and who fight for justice are true heroes to me. Speaking out on behalf of people who don’t have a voice is the most incredible gift that a hero can give to others. As part of my series about people who stepped up to make a difference during the COVID19 […]

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People that fight for the truth and who fight for justice are true heroes to me. Speaking out on behalf of people who don’t have a voice is the most incredible gift that a hero can give to others.

As part of my series about people who stepped up to make a difference during the COVID19 Pandemic, I had the pleasure of interviewing Consuelo Vanderbilt Costin.

Consuelo Vanderbilt Costin founded her record label C&R Productions in 2010 and her first four singles landed her in the Top 20 on the Billboard Dance Charts. Her debut single “Naked” spent 16 weeks on the charts, while her follow-up “Feel So Alive” earned her Billboard’s #2 Breakout Artist honor. The highly controversial video was banned in 10 countries.

Her latest hit “Body Needs” broke Billboard’s Top 5. Consuelo’s highly anticipated pop-dance album I’m Just Me dropped in Germany, Austria, and Switzerland this past summer and is due for release in the U.S. at the end of the year. The seventh generation of shipping and railroad tycoon, Cornelius Vanderbilt, and great-great-great niece of Consuelo Vanderbilt, the Duchess of Marlborough. Consuelo shied away from the world of debutante balls to carve her own path through her ventures in music and business and has been featured in Vogue, Town & Country, 25A, Prestige, Paper, and Raine Magazine for her many accomplishments.

But the road to success was not an easy one. At nineteen, Consuelo suffered a near-fatal car accident that almost destroyed her. Instead, she clawed her way back through a year of recovery and landed her first record deal at twenty-one. The dimple-like scar on her right cheek reminds her of how precious life is, and how with enough will and determination, any obstacle can be overcome. Having studied theater in London, music, and arts in Florence and starting her first rock band in Munich, Consuelo is no stranger to world travel.

Her music career cemented her status as a global player, taking her from cafés in Italy to London’s Royal Albert Hall, New York’s Central Park, and some of the most legendary clubs on Hollywood’s famed Sunset Strip. After an L.A. DJ discovered one of her songs and turned it into a Billboard Dance Chart hit, Consuelo’s pop-rock career shifted.

Consuelo has performed around the world and shared stages with such music luminaries as Vanessa Carlton, Mya, and Tweet. In 2017 Consuelo launched SohoMuse centered on an exclusive membership-by-invitation-only platform, SohoMuse enables creative professionals to promote their talents and projects, network, and collaborate with other creatives and source talent across the globe — all within a secure and trusted ecosystem. Now with Covid-19, Consuelo has opened the platform to creatives giving them a place for performances and doing interviews where artists can make money through tips from fans watching along.

Thank you so much for doing this with us Consuelo! Before we dig in, our readers would like to get to know you a bit. Can you tell us a bit about how and where you grew up?

I was born in New York, moved to L.A when I was two years old and then we relocated to London when I was six years old. Growing up in the film industry we traveled a lot and I lived a very nomadic life and had many incredible adventures and experiences at a very young age.

Is there a particular book that made a significant impact on you? Can you share a story or explain why it resonated with you so much?

“The Alchemist” is one book that has made a strong impact on my life because of the journey that the main character takes in the story. He really has to struggle to find himself and learn to trust his own heart to follow his dreams. It has always resonated with me and shaped how I live my life.

Do you have a favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Do you have a story about how that was relevant in your life or your work?

“If I had learned education I would not have had time to learn anything else” is a quote from my seventh generation grandfather Cornelius Vanderbilt and it rings true in my own life because I have learned so much more by traveling and life experiences then I ever did in school.

Ok, thank you for all that. Now let’s move to the main focus of our interview. You are currently leading a social impact organization that has stepped up during the COVID-19 Pandemic. Can you tell us a bit about what you and your organization are trying to address?

When the pandemic became very serious, I was heartbroken to see so many of my friends and so many of our members losing opportunities that they had worked so hard to achieve for many years. As an artist myself, I know how reliant so many of us are on performing for a live crowd to make income and to lose that can destroy an artist’s career. SohoMuse alongside our partner MUSETEK began hosting a free live streaming service that we have dubbed SohoMuse A Virtual Entertainment Series #SAVES where our members can perform in a more intimate and raw environment where we guide them through the finer technical points of setting up their show. We always want to make sure they have the most engaging show that they can with their fans, and the space allows them to interact directly with the viewers in a very up close and personal way. The artists make money via ticket sales, tips, and donations, or they can even donate their performance to a charity of their choice.

In your opinion, what does it mean to be a hero?

A hero is someone who is fearless, bold, not afraid to stand for what’s right and speak the truth always.

If heroism is rooted in doing something difficult, scary, or even self-sacrificing, what do you think drives some people — ordinary people — to become heroes?

People that fight for the truth and who fight for justice are true heroes to me. Speaking out on behalf of people who don’t have a voice is the most incredible gift that a hero can give to others.

What was the specific catalyst for you or your organization to take heroic action? At what point did you personally decide that heroic action needed to be taken?

I have always wanted to be a voice that helps uplift the creative community and to be of service to them. My heart is for the creative community and it’s survival, especially in this trying time, and that is why I started our entertainment series. So many incredibly talented creatives are not good at championing themselves and I wanted to provide the catalyst to help these talented artists have access to more opportunities that they know are real. Covid-19 is an inconvenient roadblock for many people, but we have had such amazing feedback from our members about #SAVES and we will continue to do as much as we can to make sure our community is inspired in its time of need.

Who are your heroes, or who do you see as heroes today?

I think of leaders in the community like Oprah Winfrey, the Dalai Lama, and most importantly today the frontline workers during this pandemic are who I view as my personal heroes.

Let’s talk a bit about what is happening in the world today. What specifically frightened or frightens you most about the pandemic?

The fear of the unknown is a major fear of mine. There is so much about Covid-19 that we still do not understand and the fact that it is constantly mutating is very frightening. I am hopeful that as the scientists and incredibly talented researchers all over the world make new discoveries that this fear will settle though.

Despite that, what gives you hope for the future? Can you explain?

I think that this time in isolation has forced us all to take a look at what truly matters in life such as family, trust, love, and opening your heart to others. It is the simple truths that matter and makes a difference. My hope is that this changes people’s hearts to hold on to those important things in life and that gives me hope for the future.

What has inspired you the most about the behavior of people during the pandemic, and what behaviors do you find most disappointing?

Seeing people risk their lives and leaving their families in uncertainty is one of the most extraordinary and inspiring things I have seen during this pandemic. The sacrifice that the frontline workers make every day! I think the most disturbing thing to me has been the fact that we have not been given all of the facts about Covid-19 and have been kept in the dark about legitimate facts.

Has this crisis caused you to reassess your view of the world or of society? We would love to hear what you mean.

It has led me to be more conscious of the world and just how frail humanity can really be. This pandemic has caused us to go against our normal human instincts of interaction and I think that it has really made me change my idea of how far people will go to find new ways of staying connected.

What permanent societal changes would you like to see come out of this crisis?

I want people to show more love and respect towards each other and towards humanity as a whole.

If you could tell other young people one thing about why they should consider making a positive impact on our environment or society, like you, what would you tell them?

I would tell them to look at their own lives and see how they can help others. By pulling from your own life experiences and finding your passion within that you will stay true to yourself and be able to help others in a meaningful way.

You are a person of great influence. If you could start a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. 🙂

I would love to start a fund for creatives that would help multiple projects and artists to get funding and help them to achieve their goals. Finding funding is one of the hardest things for many talented artists to do and many give up hope that they will be able to create their art because of the lack of resources, and that is something that I would love to help change.

Is there a person in the world, or in the US, with whom you would like to have a private breakfast or lunch, and why? He or she might just see this, especially if we tag them. 🙂

I would love to have lunch with Madonna. She has always been a woman I have admired because of how she constantly evolves, how she has always broken the mold, and how she has constantly been a true pioneer as both an artist and an entrepreneur.

How can our readers follow you online?

@consuelo_vanderbilt_costin on Instagram, @consuelocostin on Twitter, @sohomuseinc and on

This was very meaningful, thank you so much. We wish you only continued success on your great work!

Thank you!

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