Julie Scriven’s camera roll is filled with photos of her daughter in the recording studio with people such as Selena Gomez and Gwen Stefani.
Hold on, Scriven says while scrolling through her phone, she found a photo with Britney Spears, too.
“It’s how she keeps me updated sometimes because she’s usually so far away,” said Scriven, who lives in Davenport. “I get to follow along a little bit.”
She will have more photos to add on Sunday, when her daughter, Julia Michaels, performs “Carrry Me” with Kygo, a DJ and music producer, at the Rio Olympic’s closing ceremony.
Michaels, who is 22, was born in Davenport and moved to Santa Clarita, California, with her family when she was 4. Over the past five or so years, Michaels has emerged as a powerhouse songwriter, collaborating with Fifth Harmony, Demi Lovato, Zedd, Justin Bieber, Jason Derulo and Kelly Clarkson. She co-wrote "Used to Love You” by Gwen Stefani, “Sorry” by Justin Bieber, “Close" by Nick Jonas, as well as seven songs on Britney Spears’ new album.
But the Olympic stage will be Michaels' biggest one yet.
"She found out a couple months ago and doesn't like to talk about things a lot so she doesn't jinx them," Scriven said. "But now, it's everywhere and on TV, and people know about it, so I think it’s surreal for her.”
Scriven talks to her daughter every day, and they visit each other several times per year. This weekend, they texted back and forth about Julia's outfit for the concert and delayed flights to Rio.
"A lot of people have heard her voice on the radio and not known it was her," she said. "Now, they're going to know her."
It hasn’t set in for her dad, John Cavazos, either. He grew up in Moline but still lives in California about 10 minutes away from Michaels' house.
"My initial reaction was great and joy and great pride for my daughter," Cavazos said. "This is introducing her the whole world. It’s still shocking to me.”
In her career so far, Michaels has mostly been “a closeted writer and singer” and “under the radar,” he said.
She would write songs to pass on to her sister, Jaden, who also is a singer/songwriter and has penned songs for Kelly Clarkson and Lea Michele. When Michaels was 17, she and Joleen Belle teamed up on the theme song for the Disney show “Austin & Ally.”
"That was her big break," Scriven said. “And it’s just kept going. Even from when she turned 22 in November, it’s been more and more."
Still, her parents say she hasn’t strayed far from her Quad-City roots.
"She has carried that Midwest mentality with her," Cavazos said. "She's heartfelt and kind and warm."
On Michaels' Facebook page, which has about 3,800 likes, the description reads: “Just a girl from Iowa that was given a pen to write her secrets and out came lyrics."
After Sunday’s show, her Facebook page — and the number of people who know her name — will likely grow.
"This is the biggest thing she's ever, ever done," Scriven said. "After the Olympics, her world is going to change."
This summer, Michaels signed a record deal with Republic and soon will unveil a solo project.
"What better way to come out to the world than the Olympics," Scriven said. "Who gets to do that?"
Scriven plans to watch the closing ceremony at Kelly's Irish Pub in Davenport with some friends, crank the TV volume up and have her camera at the ready.
"It's a big feat for a little girl from Davenport, Iowa," she said. "It's the Olympics. It's mind blowing."