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(Source : www.celebritywonder.com)
Name: Ricky Martin
Birth Name: Enrique Jose Martin Morales IV
Height: 6' 1/2''
Nationality: Puerto Rican
Date: December 24 1971 at 5 pm
Birth Place: San Juan Puerto Rico
Occupation: actor musician composer
Education: Professional singing and acting lessons
Relationship: Rebecca de Alba (TV journalist; 1989-1999) Lilly Melgar (General Hospital co-star)
Father: Enrique Martin III (psychologist; divorced from Martin's mother in 1974)
Mother: Nereida Morales (accountant)
Half Sister: Vanessa Martin (younger)
Half Brother: Fernando Fernandez (older) Angel Fernandez (older) Eric Martin Daniel Martin
Claim to fame: Vuelve (1998)
Empresas Angelo Medina Georgetti 1406
Santurce Puerto Rico 00910
Ricky Martin -- an international superstar and native of Puerto Rico who has sold more than 15 million records worldwide appears to be conquering the US as well, thanks in large part to an electrifying performance of his worldwide smash hit (and 1998 World Cup theme song), "La Copa de la Vida," at the Grammy Awards show in February 1999. Martin is being hailed as the forerunner in a vanguard of Latin pop guards - a 'Latin fever' that is spreading worldwide. His 1998 Spanish-language album, Vuelve, won the 1999 Grammy for Best Latin Pop Performance and Martin's debut single ("Livin' La Vida Loca") from his first English-language album has become the biggest selling No.1 single in the history of Columbia Records.
Born in San Juan, Puerto Rico, on December 24th 1971, Martin got his first taste of performing in grade school, where he acted in school plays and sang in the choir. As a small child, he appeared in a number of television commercials and immersed himself in singing lessons. Unusually, early influences included David Bowie and Cheap Trick until his mother escorted Martin and his brothers to a Celia Cruz concert, an event that had a profound influence. "One day our mother got tired of rock," he recalls with a smile. "She said, 'I can't stand it anymore!' and grabbed us by the ears and took us to a Celia Cruz concert. It really affected me." Today, Ricky says, "I listen to everything. I'm like a sponge. I'm in this creative moment that feels like, 'Let's get it out!'"
Martin landed a spot with the Latin boy group Menudo in 1984 at the tender age of 12, and for the next five years he maintained a grueling regime of recording work and tours. In 1989, when Menudo was at the peak of its success, Martin opted out and moved to New York, hoping to achieve solo success. After a year of unemployment, frustration led the aspiring entertainer to Mexico. Soon after being cast as a regular in the Mexican soap opera Alcanzar una Estrella II, Martin began dividing his time between acting and music. His first two Spanish albums, 'Ricky Martin' (1992) and 'Me Amaras' (1993), achieved gold status in several countries. This success led Martin to move once again, this time to Los Angeles in 1994 where he divided his time between his third Spanish album, 'A Medio Vivir' and as bartender Miguel Morez on the US soap, General Hospital.
Released in 1995, A Medio Vivir constituted a turning point in Martin's recording career. The album combined Latin styling with a rock orientation. Worldwide sales reached 600,000 within six months, and in October 1997 the release was certified gold. Martin was awarded the prestigious role of Marius in the Broadway production of Les Miserables and also found time to dub the Spanish version of the popular animated Disney film Hercules.
As soon as his year-long stint on Broadway was completed, Martin began work on his fourth Spanish album titled 'Vuelve', the album which sported the smash hit, "La Copa de la Vida". It experienced spectacular worldwide sales, to date selling 6 million copies. Following Martin's 1999 Grammy victory - Vuelve was named Best Latin Pop Album - and his much talked-about performance at the awards ceremony, sales of Vuelve jumped six-fold, thus creating the perfect atmosphere for the May release of Martin's first English-language album, 'Ricky Martin', which has been two years in the making. "It's all about communicating," Ricky says by way of explaining his decision to record in English. "I will never stop singing in Spanish -- that's who I am -- but this was always part of the plan."
"I had the dream team!," he enthuses about his producers: Robi Rosa (with whom he's been working for years); Emilio Estefan, Jr. (the pioneer behind the "Miami sound"); songwriter Desmond Child (best-known for his work with Bon Jovi and Aerosmith but, as Ricky points out, is Cuban-born and "very much in touch with the Latin sounds"); and, through Madonna, electronica titan William Orbit. The production values on Ricky Martin draw from, and enhance, the roots of his music. "Technology is great and it works so you use it," Ricky admits, "but I also try to keep things very simple. When it comes to music, you cannot pull a whip on yourself. I don't want my voice to sound too technical, I want it to sound like me. The way I feel is, I don't have to sound perfect, but my emotion has to nail it. There's nothing scientific about it, it's all about emotion. I let it flow. If it's real, it stays."
So far Martin appears to be handling his success well, turning down a chance to star opposite Jennifer Lopez in a film remake of West Side Story, on the grounds that the movie helps perpetuate Puerto Rican stereotypes; 'the consummate professional and painstaking artist'. He also continues to maintain a relationship with his longtime girlfriend, Rebecca de Alba (who hosts a TV show in Mexico), and in regard to his singing career he said to USA Today:
"I want to do this forever. I don't want to be the hit of the summer, and, hopefully, with a lot of humility, we can talk in 10 years and I'll still be here."
(Source : www.nabou.com)
Ricky Martin: on music, sexuality, and legends
TORONTO - His official site says if he were a drink, he'd be champagne. If he were food, he'd be caviar. And if he were a dance, he'd be the Salsa, baby. He is Mr. Enrique "Ricky" Martin.
Longtime recognised in Latin America, Martin exploded onto the international music scene at the Grammy Awards with the rivetting performance of his hit single, Living' La Vida Loca.
Since then, fans can't get enough of the ebullient 27-year-old from San Juan, Puerto Rico. Martin has sold more than 15 million records worldwide and packs stadiums from Buenos Aires to Beijing to New Delhi. When Martin made a promotional stop in Toronto last June, thousands of overheated and screaming people thronged the city's downtown core. He is a recognisable name and presence in more than 24 million American households.
On The Arts host Laurie Brown recently sat down with Ricky Martin to find out more about the man with a crazy zest for life.
Laurie Brown: Why do you do this?
Ricky Martin: I think that I have something to say to music. I told my dad when I was eight-years-old that I wanted to be an entertainer. But if you asked me why, I guess I wanted to educate. I want people to know about my background, about my culture, and the best way to do this is through music. It's not threatening. It could be through politics, it could be through literature, it could be through film, but I chose to go through music. I get the opportunity to get rid of cliches and stereotypes.
Brown: There is the cliche and stereotype of the Latin man. What makes you different from that stereotype?
Martin: Well I think that I can still be stubborn, macho, jealous and possessive, let's put it that way.
Brown: Do you think that is a good thing or a bad thing?
Martin: It depends how you feel. As long as you have respect for others, I don't think it's a problem for me and for others, do you understand? If I get married I want my wife to work. You know where I'm coming from, it's not you stay home and take care of the kids.' That's not how it works. I want a woman who is very secure in herself, someone who knows what she wants, and someone who can teach me.
Brown: The other thing about being in this position. There are millions of women who would love to be in my position right now just to get a chance to meet you. There is an expectation about you that you are an incredibly sexy guy. Every woman would like to think that you are an incredible lover. Probably the best lover in the world. How do you live up to that? How do you step out on the stage knowing that women are thinking that?
Martin: I know what I am. It would be such a responsibility to let 20,000 women know that I'm a good lover. That's not the point. I don't know how to answer your question. Am I being honest?
Brown: You have to be able to transmit the sexiness that you do, you must feel that you are that.
Martin: The confidence is an instinct. Sexuality and sensuality are two different things. Sensuality is something you are born with I guess, and it's an instinct. It's there, it comes from here. It's your voice and your movement. It's the way you act, it's the way you behave. Sexuality is something I do for my work. It's not for me, but with respect to the woman who I'm with. You see, there goes the macho, there goes the Latin stereotype. Being a gentleman, we go back to that. But I don't have to prove anything to anybody.
Brown: Will you tell me the story of being blessed by the Pope? How does that work?
Martin: It was fascinating. It doesn't matter what you believe or where you come from or who's your God. When you are in a room when the Pope walks in, your lungs are going to be filled with air. He's like a little angel walking; he is so spiritual. You look into those eyes and they see right through you. It's beautiful, you know my mother was crying. She couldn't stop crying. It was a beautiful experience.
Brown: Who gives you good advice now? Who is the person that you trust?
Martin: Why do I think about this answer so much? I think that I am a millionaire in friends. They give me balance. I go to my friends - people that I've known since I was 10 years old. We've grown up together. They know me from head to toe. They know what I like and they know what I think. They know what buttons to push. So I'm going to give them a lot of credit for my emotional stability.
Brown: As you get bigger and bigger and bigger, there are more people around you that want to say "yes, that's great, that's great."
Martin: Yes, but the that's great that's great' can destroy you. You have to be realistic. If you take it from anybody, you'll get higher and higher until you come down and crash. I don't want to end up like that person. It's business you know. Legends, I would love to be a legend, I would love to be remembered forever.
(Source : www.infoculture.cbc.ca)
(Source : www.nabou.com)
>>> Sound Loaded SONY/Columbia 2000
>>> Ricky Martin C2/Columbia 1999
>>> Vuelve Sony Discos 1998
>>> A Medio Vivir Sony Discos 1995
>>> Me Amaras Sony Discos 1993
>>> Ricky Martin (Spanish) Sony Discos 1991
2000 Grammy Nominees RCA 2000
Billboard Latin Music Awards Superstar Hits Sony Int'l 1999
Music of the World Cup Sony 1998
Voces Unidas EMI Latin 1996
Hey Jude: Tributo a Los Beatles Sony International 1995
Gigantes de la Cancion Sony International 1994
Boleros Voz y Sentimiento Discos CBS International 1993
Ricky Martin: Bang Bang
In 1999, former Menudo member, ex-"General Hospital" heartthrob, and Latin-market pop superstar Ricky Martin released his first English-language album and quickened his steps toward global domination.
On the strength of the maddeningly catchy "Livin' la Vida Loca" -- the biggest-selling single in the history of Columbia Records -- the post-teen idol from Puerto Rico finally conquered the U.S., and vaulted into the stratosphere populated by Madonna, Whitney Houston, Britney Spears, and a handful of other solo megastars.
In a matter of moments, "Sound Loaded," the follow-up to Ricky's breakthrough, will be released to every record store on planet Earth. MTV's Carson Daly recently talked with Martin about the album's provocative first single, "She Bangs"; his addiction to performing; and the trappings of fame.
MTV News: Let's get it out there. What's the title of the single, "She Bangs," about?
Ricky Martin: That says it all, man. "She Bangs." [Laughs] What else do you want? Can I be more specific? Take your clothes off! Come on! No, I'm just kidding. It's a song about freedom. It's a song that contains a lot of fantasies in it, as well. It's a song that talks about the joy of not feeling judged and just being who you are. It's a song that describes a woman who can really seduce you without really looking at you. Musically, we have the rock and roll. We have a bit of Latin, and we have a big band playing -- those horns, like it was the end of the world. [RealAudio]
MTV: What do you like so much about "She Bangs"?
Martin: This is this the kind of song that I want to have as part of my repertoire in my concerts for the next 10 years. I think this song will be part of my life for a long time. Once again, it's about freedom, because it's about feeling good with yourself. Because it it's about the joy of life. It's about just feeling.
MTV: Why did you pick it as the first single?
Martin: It was easy, because it had everything. It had the emotion. It had the passion that I need to present. It's just like, you know, "I'm still here," and this is what I'm with. This is what I'm coming up with. It was non-negotiable. It was easy.
MTV: What's going to be different about this new album, compared with what you've done before?
Martin: You know, I don't want to compare my albums. First of all, because they were done in different modes. I am not the same guy who recorded "Livin' la Vida Loca." -- it's been two years. Although the roots are going to be the same in this album, because the Latin sounds will always be there. But I'm another person. I've lived more. I've read more. And what you'll find in this album are my concerns in life, my concerns with society. Love will, of course, always be there. But I have other concerns that I have to talk about.
We should be concerned about things. We're not superheroes or anything. But if, with my music, I have the opportunity to get to the masses of people, and if I can create some sort of a consciousness about life in general -- well, why not do it? That's my goal. We sold almost 18 million copies of the album Ricky Martin. With this one, hopefully 20. Hopefully 25. [Laughs]
With this album, you have a little bit of jazz. With this album, you have a little bit of rock. The Latin sounds, the Brazilian sounds are there. You will definitely hear new stuff that we don't have on the first English album.
The album is pretty diverse. We have "She Bangs," but we also have a blues influence in one of the songs that was produced by George Noriega, called "Loaded." We have the Brazilian sound with a song called "Saint Tropez." We have the Latin sound with a song called "Amor." It's a pretty diverse album with the same roots.
We tried to use a lot of very earthy instruments. Technology can help us a lot when we talk about music, but here, every instrument was recorded with a musician. We started using not only Latin percussion, but we went back to India and we did a little bit of Indian sounds, and a mix of Middle Eastern sounds that are so easy to link with my roots.
MTV: Is it easy or hard -- or neither -- to be recording in different languages?
Martin: Well, it's been pretty intense for the last decade. I'm recording in English, but I'm going to keep working in Spanish, because it's my mother tongue. English, it's been fascinating. It's all about communicating, and if I have to do it in Chinese and Portuguese and French, I'll do it.
English is the international language. It's the language that at the end of the day, every artist wants to record. But it's been wild. Having the opportunity to work with amazing artists such as Madonna, for example. Such as Sting. People that I really respected for many years. And then "Livin' la Vida Loca," which has given me the opportunity to once again go to these countries that I've worked before and perform -- in Europe, Asia and the rest of the world. It's been really intense. I'm really happy. I guess it's just that whatever I'm ready to do, God has a plan, and all of a sudden everything happens. [RealAudio]
MTV: The integration of sounds is key for you.
Martin: My success just reassures my belief in my sound and my culture. When you listen to "Livin' La Vida Loca," you have a little bit of Latin sound, but at the same time you have a little bit of the ska and at the same time you have a little bit of rock and roll. It tells me that fusion is very important in my music. But I'm pretty much the same. I take my time to go back to my family as much as I can. It tends to get a little bit intense, with fame and everything. But musically speaking, everything is more intense because of the passion that you have to give. I guess you're more vulnerable toward everything, and it feels good.
MTV: What's it like on the road for you?
Martin: Well, we started doing the American tour last October. It went really good. We did something like 70 concerts. Then we did Europe, and we were there for three weeks. Then we did Latin America, and I'm about to go to Asia right now. My friend, we're all the same. It doesn't matter what part of the world you go to, my attitude is to let people know that it's very important to let go and to just feel free. At least at my concerts, it's all about detaching and letting go of problems in life and problems of society that can disturb us. We want to create a little, beautiful, perfect planet where no one is going to feel judged tonight, and people just let go. It doesn't matter if it's Japan, Mexico City, Buenos Aires or Paris.
We become a soul, and they become part of the stage. I become part of the audience. For me, the immediate contact with the audience is very important. You know a lot of people ask me, "Are you gonna go back to acting?" Well, yes, I can go back to acting, but not for a while. I want to go back to acting, but right now, I need to have this direct contact with the audience, which is so addictive. It's like a little gift that God has given me: to make people happy with my music and my sounds. I don't want to let go of this. I want to keep working on the road. And the production is really intense. Me, going up and down in platforms. The lighting, the screens -- it's a beautiful concert, man. I have a lot of fun with it, and I guess people do the same.
MTV: You're excited about the release of this new album?
Martin: Yes. It's a cathartic process, man. You feel clean. You feel new. I've been working on this album now for almost a year. It's been really intense, because I've been touring, and every time I had a day off I would hop on a plane and jump to the studio. It doesn't matter where I was, especially when I was here in the United States, touring. I would just fly back to Miami and be there when the percussion was recorded, when the piano was being recorded, when those horns were being recorded. It feels great, man. This is what is so beautiful about this career. You think you're done, and you think you did it all. But no, wait a minute-- this is only the beginning, and now I'm listening to "She Bangs" on the radio. It feels really good. [RealAudio]
MTV: When does Sound Loaded drop?
Martin: November 14 is the date. Everywhere, everywhere, everywhere in the world. Ready for the holidays. I'll be presenting it personally to the media, the press, to television. I'll be doing anything that has to be done in order for people to know that I'm here, and that there's a lot of music, and that there's a lot more to come.
(Source : www.mtvasia.com)