Bachata music’s little prince is finding the balance between being young, staying relevant and representing a new generation of Latinos
While many artists try to win-over the young, bilingual Latin market, it seems as though Prince Royce is endorsed by it. With his bachata rendition of the Ben E. King classic “Stand By Me” from his 2010 self-titled debut, the 22-year-old Dominican-American artist showed his soft spot for American classics and placed himself on the map as urban music’s new promise.
Prior to his debut album, his MySpace profile grew by word of mouth of his fans. Radio programmers placed his singles on rotation after countless calls from fans requesting to hear his songs, and at the 2011 Premios Juventud, Prince Royce stole the night with the most won categories including the coveted “Voice of the Moment” recognition.
Having recently signed with Atlantic Records and embarking on a fall tour with Enrique Iglesias and Pitbull, Prince Royce shows vigorous signs of stardom. Nonetheless, he remains adamant that his success is in the hands of his fans and that all dreams, big or small, are within reach.
You’ve come a long way rather quickly. How are you dealing with the before and after?
When I was a teenager I worked selling cell phones and I also at IHOP for a while. It has definitely been a drastic change in lifestyle and everything happened really fast. I just signed with Atlantic Records so I’m very excited about that. I’ll have two albums coming out in the first quarter of next year. One of them is going to be my second bachata album and the other will be my first English pop album.
Do you think the English pop transition will be a smooth one?
I do actually. I started singing R&B and pop music before I released Prince Royce. So it’s kind of going back in time. I’m really excited about it because I’ll be able to show my fans the English pop side of me, and with the second bachata album I’ll have new songs that will hopefully be hits as well.
Will this new album have the Latino essence that you’re known for?
Always. It’s English pop with a little Latino to it. There are two sides of me, the bachata/tropical Latin side and the English pop as well. They’re both equally important, so I’ll always make sure to keep both roots in my music.
You represent the new, young American Latino. What’s your advice for other youth such as yourself?
Just three years ago I was just another kid from the Bronx. I was a teenager doing teenager things, and now I have the honor of being on tour with musical giants Enrique Iglesias and Pitbull. I’m doing my music and performing in my own concerts! It just goes to show that anything is possible with hard work.
Speaking of Enrique Iglesias and Pitbull, collaborating with different artists has worked well for them. Do you plan on following that beat?
I’m not thinking of doing any collaborations as of now. I’m still in the process of getting the music together and finding the right songs. Right now I’m focused on working with producers, like the ones that have produced for Chris Brown, Justin Bieber and Usher. It’ll be a high-powered pop and R&B album for sure!
How do you deal with that pressure?
I try to do a lot of normal stuff to get my mind off all other stress. I go to the beach, hang with my family and go out to eat. I’m really into trying different foods. I also play lots of video games! Right now I’m really into Call of Duty and I’m looking forward to Gears of War 3, it’s coming out soon.
I think you just described your average fan…
Yeah! You know, the fans have been very important in my career. Even though I’m just doing me and doing my thing, they’re the captains of this ship. Without them none of this would be possible. Even now, I have fans from different cultures coming up to me saying that they don’t understand what I’m singing but that they like the music. It’s amazing to think that my music is reaching people on another level.