It’s hard to know how an interview will go when you first sit down, but when we met up with British teenager Alexander James Rodriguez, he greeted us with a big friendly smile and an effortless English politeness, we knew we were in for a treat.
Alexander James Rodriguez is probably best known for his bubblegum pop songs and his British boy band swagger. The 13-year-old, who progressed to music at the height of the pandemic last year, kicked off 2021 by receiving the prestigious ‘Rising Star Award’ at the Hollywood Music in Media Award, for his debut single, ‘My Crew’. This week he released his sixth original song, ‘We Are’ to his music catalogue. We sat down with the teen to chat acting, music and what’s coming up in 2021.
Congrats on everything! You have had a whirlwind 10 months. Can you tell us what got you into music?
Thank you for having me! I really have had a crazy few months. When the LA-lockdown happened in March 2020, filming productions closed and that meant my acting career was on hiatus. I have always sung, so using that down time to progress into music just seemed timely.
What have been some of the highlights since launching your music career?
I have so many, but I would say, going into the recording studio at age twelve and releasing my first single, My Crew at thirteen. I cannot explain the excitement of playing My Crew for the first-time on one of the digital platforms. I am not signed to a record label so everything you see out there was generated by myself and my mom. The biggest highlight though is being recognized for my music and receiving the ‘Rising Star Award’ at the Hollywood Music in Media Awards on January 27th this year. What an honor to be in the line-up with John Legend, Justin Timberlake and Diane Warren (I hope she picks up a few Oscars for Lo Si). Insane!
Your latest music to be released this year has a slightly different vibe. Tell us about that transition.
I recorded ‘My Crew’, ‘Your Smile’ and ‘Up To You’ when I was twelve. I didn’t really know what my sound was going to be at that point. However, when we started creating the music that is being released this year, I had 6 months more vocal experience, my voice had slightly deepened, and I knew the vibe I wanted to produce. I also knew I wanted to be part of the process and write lyrics. I guess you could say I’m evolving as an artist!
One of the songs releasing next month, ‘California’, most of my lyrics were used. I’m super proud of that song. I also wanted to experiment with other record producers that brought new sounds and flavors.
Tell us about the new single ‘We Are’
My new single ‘We Are’ was very much born out of the latter part of the pandemic. I recorded it in November of 2020. It was probably the hardest of all my upcoming songs to write and record, mainly because I wanted the song to touch the hearts of everyone. I recorded two versions of the melodies on the verses two weeks apart as we “lived” with the song to see if the lyrics and melody really matched.
The song is about finding your own light and to always be the shining star you are. Because we all need to live in the moment and be free. I wanted people to feel happy and empowered to let their colors shine when they heard the song. I hope we achieved that.
We love the cinematic feel of the music video for ‘We Are’. Where was it filmed?
The music video for ‘We Are’ was filmed at Angels Point in Elysian Park overlooking Downtown Los Angeles and Dodgers Stadium. We also discovered a cool underpass under South Grand Avenue where Terminator, Dark Knight and The Soloist were filmed, right by the iconic Walt Disney Concert Hall on Grand Avenue, Los Angeles, which we also utilized briefly. By the time we started to film there, it had begun to rain, so I sang the song twice to passerby’s and on-lookers before jumping in the car to stay dry!
It is well documented that you are the voice of the popular TV show ‘Bee and Puppycat’ character, Cardamon. Tell us about that role.
I love being that purple haired landlord in ‘Bee and Puppycat’. I first booked the role when I was 6 years old. It was the first voice over I had ever done. I was able to speak in a British accent, and really just read the script normally without much effort. Cardamon is very deadpan. He has this fun expressionless tone in his voice and even though I often want to spice him up, its not his personality. My voice has changed so much since the first recording, as you can imagine it’s been 7 years. He’s a great character to play, so different to my own personality.
What’s coming up next?
I am releasing my next single, ‘California’ on May 7th along with the music video that we filmed in various locations in California, and I will be releasing my debut hybrid Spanish-English song, ‘Bella Loquita’ in June. I am so extremely excited to release that song. My friends and family back in Madrid and Marbella in Spain will be thrilled to hear me sing in Spanish!
‘We Are’ from Alexander James Rodriguez is currently out and available for download on iTunes and all digital streaming platforms including Apple Music, Spotify, Amazon Music, YouTube Music, TikTok, Pandora, DEEZER and more – choose your platform click the link https://ffm.to/wearewhoweare
For up to the minute news on Alexander James Rodriguez follow him on Instagram: www.instagram.com/iamajrodriguez