Camila Cabello Shares the Dramatic Details Behind Her Fifth Harmony Departure

'Camila' is about to be a classic.

Camila Cabello

Image via Getty/Andrew Lipovsky/NBC/NBCU

Camila Cabello

Though it may seem like eons ago for fans, Camila Cabello's official departure from Fifth Harmony only went down just over a year ago. In a note shared late in the night Dec. 18, 2016, the remaining Fifth Harmony members claimed Cabello had informed them of her decision to leave the group "via her representatives." Now, in a must-read new interview with the New York Times, Cabello is giving her side of the story.

Cabello said her 2015 Shawn Mendes collab caused tension in the group. When she later proposed she help write lyrics for future Harmony tracks, the other members reportedly rebuffed. As for solo plans, Cabello added, she actually wanted to remain a Harmony member while exploring solo work. "I was just curious and I wanted to learn and I saw all these people around me making music, writing songs, and being so free," Cabello told the Times. "I just wanted to do that and it did not work."

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When Cabello started hitting the studio for writing sessions with Diplo and others, the tension grew until she was eventually given an ultimatum. "It became clear that it was not possible to do solo stuff and be in the group at the same time," she said. The resulting decision to exit Harmony was inspired by Cabello's belief that no one should be blocked from being allowed to "explore their individuality."

By the time the remaining Harmony members pulled that VMAs stunt last August, Cabello had already moved beyond post-Harmony mode and into full-on Camila mode. "It definitely hurt my feelings," she said. "I wasn't expecting it, I wasn't prepared for it—especially because at that point I'd moved on from it. I was just like, 'What? Why?'"

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​Friday, Camila—the album formerly known as The Hurting. The Healing. The Loving.—will be available via the usual streaming and/or purchasing outlets. Judging by "Havana" (featuring a chorus Cabello penned over sushi) and "Never Be the Same," Cabello's 10-track solo debut is going to be loaded with pop mastery.

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