Interview With Cuban American Pop Artist ‘Reina Mar’

Tell us a little about yourself?

My birth name is Rosa Martinez and I go by the artist name “Reina Mar.” I am a Cuban American pop artist from Bergen County, NJ, and I have been singing and performing professionally for over 7 years in the music industry.

How did you come up with your artist name? 

My grandmother always called me  “Reina” which was a nickname that means “queen” in Spanish. The second part of my artist name “Mar” is short for “Martinez” which is my last name and also translates to “ocean” in Spanish which I really love. So, I decided to put both together which created “Reina Mar,” which also shares the first initials of my birth name.

How long have you been in the music industry? 

I have been performing since I was 11 years old and have been professionally in the industry for over 7 years.

How did you get started in the music business in the first place? 

I started off in musical theatre as a kid and then branched out into songwriting and performing in cover bands when I was around 19 years old.

How would you describe your latest single? 

My latest single is called “Time” which is a pop ballad that really gets you in the feels. It is a very vulnerable song about reminiscing on all the special times in the past we all wish we could have back.

When can fans expect the visuals for the single?

There is a music video already out on YouTube. Go check it out!

Who are your inspirations in the music industry?

A huge inspiration of mine is my manager Keith Reid, who inspires me everyday to work smarter and harder towards my career. His knowledge and love for the industry truly inspires me and motivates me to continue honing my craft.

How do you go about writing a song and what is your process?  

Sometimes I begin with a melody in my head and then I create chords to lay down a foundation for the song. Then I begin to put words to the melody even though at times the words come first. Once I have a solid structure of the song, I bring it to my producer to begin recording and song production. 

What is the concept behind your forthcoming project if working on one? 

My upcoming single is called “Simple Love” Which is a 1950s styled pop ballad I am working on with NJ Producer Matt Pelosi from The Vault Studio in Boonton, NJ. 

Any plans on touring to promote your latest single?

There is no official tour yet, but I will be performing all around the tristate this summer in different festivals and venues. 

What did you buy with your first check off music?

When I started getting paid to perform, I was a college student so I am pretty sure It either went towards my student loans or vocal lessons at the time.

What are must haves when your in the studio working?

I definitely need a huge bottle of water to keep hydrated and some dim lights to get into the creating mood.

What is the best piece of advice in this business you actually followed?

I haven’t listened to all the haters who didn’t believe in me and have not given up on my dream. 

Will you be collaborating with any other artists in the future?

I am currently collaborating on a new project with indie Singer Songwriter Kris Ree that will soon be announced in the near future! 

What artist have you had the pleasure of working with and  what was it like?

I have worked with many different artists but my favorite one I’ve worked with so far has to be artist/producer MicMassive. Mic was a huge asset to my debut Ep “Reina Mar: The EP” not only as a producer, but as a featured artist as well. Anytime Mic and I are in the same room creating music together, there is an unexplainable magic that happens. It is truly a pleasure to work with him.   

Name an artist(s) that you would love to work with?  

I would really love to work with Camila Cabello, since I am a huge fan of her music and we both have a similar style of latin influence in our music. Also, we are both Cuban!

Do you think your music is mostly enjoyed more for the beats  or for the lyrical flow and content?

I think the song production in my music is really strong since I have an amazing production team and I have been told that the melodies in my songs are super catchy so I’ve been told by listeners. 

What area do you need to improve on in regards to your career? (Example: Better production, Delivery, Stage presence, etc…)

I think areas I could improve on is staying consistent in creating content as well as expanding my team especially for production and marketing that could really bring my career to the next level. 

What’s your all-time favourite song? 

I have so many! If I had to pick one though I would say Bohemian Rhapsody, since I am a huge Queen fan.

What was the last album you listened to?

The last album I listened to was Olivia Rodrigo’s new album “Sour”.

Your favourite artist of all time and why?

My favorite artist of all time hands down is Latin singer Selena who I grew up listening to all of my life. She has truly inspired me with her music and story and I would give anything to have met her!

Whose your favourite five artists right now? 

Olivia Rodrigo, Adele, Lady Gaga, Mabel, & Dua Lipa. 

In your opinion who is the most influential and successful artist in your genre today and why?

I would say Jennifer Lopez since she has truly made a brand of herself between singing, acting, dancing, and modeling.

Who have been some of your favourite artists that you’ve been able to work with? 

My producer MicMassive who I have collaborated with as well as Reggaeton artist Angel The Prince. 

How do you feel about the current state of music? 

I feel that the music industry is a bit oversaturated with the same kind of sound and genre of music. It’s really refreshing to see some talented artists making it out there that bring a different sound to the table.

Any dream award shows you hope to one day play at?

The Grammys all the way!

What is your main goal as far as music?

My main goal as a musician is to be able to do what I love to do the most while making a decent living while exposing my music to as many people I could reach in hopes of moving and uplifting them.

Who would you say your music relates to the most?

I feel like my music relates to listeners that appreciate latin pop artists. There is latin influence in some of my uptempo songs and some songs are pop ballads that listeners could relate to as well.  

What separates you from other artists? (What’s makes you different?)

 I am a very diverse artist that could jump into many styles of music anywhere from a latin uptempo song to a heartfelt pop ballad.

When your not in the studio, What do you like to do for fun and relaxation?

I love to meditate and work out!

If you could work with any producer who would it be?

I would love to work with latin producer “Tainy” who has worked with many latin pop artists like Kali Uchis, Bad Bunny, Danny Yankee, Anitta, and more.

What’s the biggest highlight of your career thus far?

I think one of my biggest highlights thus far has been performing in my own TedTalk called “To Breathe The Air of Freedom” for Bergen Stages back in 2016. I was so blessed with the opportunity to compose, write, and perform a TEDtalk about my family’s story fleeing Communist Cuba. 

What is your dream venue to perform at?

I would love to perform at  The Madison Square Garden or the Apollo!

What’s the name of the last book you read and by whom?

“The Way of The Peaceful Warrior” by Dan Millman which was one of the most inspiring uplifting books I have ever read. 

What’s your favourite sports team and why?

I love the Dallas Cowboys since my father is a huge fan who I grew up watching football games with. 

Whose your favourite actor or actress and their best movie?

Sandra Bullock is one of my all time favorite actors who is exceptional in every movie she is in including Gravity, Ms. Congeniality, and The Unforgivable to name a few. 

Name someone famous who inspires you and why?

Lady Gaga truly inspires me. Despite the struggles she has been through in her early years,  she has been able to overcome her obstacles and become one of the most influential women in the world. Her talent and musicianship have also inspired me to dive into different styles of music like she has throughout her career. 

What can we expect from you in the future?

There will be an upcoming single in the near future before the year is up as well as other projects and collaborations soon to be announced!

Where can the fans check out for your music?

I am available on all the popular streaming platforms search ‘Reina Mar’.

Support this artist by using the links below:

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