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Rising Music Star David Francisco: Why I would like to start a movement called “Not a Victim”

I would start a movement called “Not a Victim”. I actually already have a song with that title, and I want to encourage people not to see themselves as victims of whatever circumstances they’re in, but to use man’s final freedom — the ability to choose how to respond to what happens to them. As a part of […]


I would start a movement called “Not a Victim”. I actually already have a song with that title, and I want to encourage people not to see themselves as victims of whatever circumstances they’re in, but to use man’s final freedom — the ability to choose how to respond to what happens to them.


As a part of our series about stars who are making an important social impact, I had the distinct pleasure of interviewing, singer/songwriter, producer and author David Francisco who made his first national appearance on the 2018 American Idol season (50+ Million views). Since that time, he has appeared on the ELLEN show, been written about in USA Today, Huffington Post, CBS, and PEOPLE. FaceTime Lover, co-produced by Grammy-nominated producer Jan Smith, Nate Robinson, and David Francisco, is the 2nd single leading up to the release of the LIONHEART full album, which chronicles the story of David, who was pursuing his dream of music by moving to Nashville but was paralyzed by a distracted driver 3 weeks in. The song represents true love that he found since then and features hip-hop artist SWOOPE. Label Logic is heading up the marketing team, and Aaron Crisler of Conduit Media (radio personality Delilah), is heading up the PR efforts. CD Baby, DiscMakers and BookBaby are promoting a video series called “The Making of LIONHEART”, which will promote the music as well. David Francisco appears on the current “NOW what’s next #71” compilation album alongside Shawn Mendes, Katy Perry, and Billie Eilish among others.


Thank you so much for joining us David! Can you share with us the “backstory” that led you to this career path?

When I was growing up I was very active, excelled in school, and also played music, so I had a hard time choosing one career path. I decided to go into electrical engineering in college, at the University of Tennessee, but after college realized that I would enjoy doing music much more. The only thing is, I didn’t think it was possible to make a living doing music, but now is my chance to try. so, in August 2014 I set up my home studio and invited anyone I knew to come record. That month I made more money than I spent, and decided I would keep doing that until it didn’t work… I’m still doing it to this day 🙂

Can you share the funniest or most interesting story that occurred to you in the course of your career? What was the lesson or takeaway that you took out of that story?

Well, the most interesting story is definitely the spinal cord injury I sustained in 2016, simply because of how rare they are. Maybe the humor in it is that I had made my first ever move to a new city after 24 years of life and within three weeks was hit by a car and paralyzed. The takeaway is to never move 🙂 not really, the actual takeaway is that you can always choose how you respond to what happened to you and that sometimes you can find meaning in your suffering.

What would you advise a young person who wants to emulate your success?

You can always choose how you respond and you can find meaning in your suffering 🙂 don’t limit yourself.

Is there a person that made a profound impact on your life? Can you share a story?

There have been many, one would be my dad most of all just because of how he’s encouraged me.

How are you using your success to bring goodness to the world? Can you share with us the meaningful or exciting causes you are working on right now?

I’ve been going to high schools all around the country and sharing my story of overcoming tragedy and finding purpose in it. I’ve also just finished my first ever book, as well as a full-length album that I will be releasing early next year. The hope is that the book and album can be enjoyable, but also encouraging to people who are struggling.

Can you share with us the story behind why you chose to take up this particular cause?

Well, it kind of happened to me when I was hit by the car… But I know how powerful it is to see someone’s example of going through the same thing you are, so now I feel the need to share my story with others.

Can you share with us a story about a person who was impacted by your cause?

I’ve had a lot of students share really encouraging responses to my presentation, saying they’re going to choose not to see themselves as victims. One student even admitted they were suicidal and hearing my story made them think differently about their life.

Are there three things that individuals, society or the government can do to support you in this effort?

Reading my book “Lionheart” and listening to the album of the same name once they are out would be the best support.

What are your “5 things I wish someone told me when I first started” and why. Please share a story or an example for each.

As far as music goes, just to keep creating no matter what. And to always challenge yourself, and surround yourself with other people that are more talented than you. After I did American Idol I realized that there were such incredible singers in the world and that I had a lot of room to improve.

Next, I would say just to be a hard worker, I’ve had to do a lot of therapy and it’s really hard work.

Next is that in certain areas of life, it can be important not to think about the long term… During therapy, if I focused on my weakness and what it would mean for my life, I wouldn’t have been able to focus on accomplishing the task at hand. I would’ve been depressed.

Try to stay open-minded. Most of the time, humans are limited by their own idea of what’s possible. We can do more than we ever thought possible.

If you get nervous in front of people, quit thinking about yourself! If you focus on the audience and making sure that they get the message that you are trying to convey, it will be much easier to be confident and get the message across.

You are a person of enormous 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 start a movement called “Not a Victim”. I actually already have a song with that title, and I want to encourage people not to see themselves as victims of whatever circumstances they’re in, but to use man’s final freedom — the ability to choose how to respond to what happens to them.

Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Can you explain how that was relevant in your life?

You can always choose how to respond to what happens to you, it’s man’s final freedom. Also, You can find meaning in suffering.

We are blessed that some of the biggest names in Business, VC funding, Politics, Sports, and Entertainment read this column. Is there a person in the world, or in the US whom you would love to have a private breakfast or lunch with, and why? He or she might just see this if we tag them 🙂

I would LOVE to have lunch with Lionel Richie. I met him once on American Idol, and he was so kind and seemed to have a wealth of knowledge. I’d love to hear stories.

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