Lea Garza can really belt out a tune. She sings well enough, in fact, to have recently won a national contest after covering Demi Lovato’s “Stone Cold.”

And the 12-year-old Merida girl sung it with the conviction, emotion and power of a young woman closer to 20. And the lyrics rang true:

Stone cold, stone cold
You see me standing, but I’m dying on the floor
Stone cold, stone cold
Maybe if I don’t cry, I won’t feel anymore

Lea won the contest Concurso El Cantante in Tijuana, competing against 50 other contestants. After four eliminations, one semifinal and a final, she impressed the judges enough to win the contest and take home 45,000 pesos.

Lea’s parents are Giulia and Javier Garza, the latter of whom is a award-winning mixing engineer from Florida. Her father’s work has garnered 16 Grammys while working with the likes of Ricky Martin, Shakira and Jennifer Lopez.

The family eventually moved from the U.S. having lived in Merida since 2017 “and loving it,” says Mom, who is a psychotherapist specializing in music therapy. And music is indeed personal emotional therapy for Lea, who has dual citizenship.

Lea is the third generation of musicians in her family.

“My father in law was in the Mexican band Los Locos del Ritmo and then he left them and founded Mr. Loco, both very famous in Mexico,” Giulia notes. “Mr. Loco’s music became popular again after their music was used in an American movie ‘Nacho Libre’ with Jack Black.”

“Lea was born in my husband’s music studio,” Giulia says. “She started classes at 5 and she wants to be a singer.”

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