The Floodgates Have Opened For Pop Singer Adrian Wilson
By Samantha Matcovsky
Bronx born, Los Angeles dwelling, Italian-Puerto Rican pop singer, Adrian Wilson, is the face of the phrase, "stay true to yourself." From dancing with a broom, to turning down a record deal, Adrian always knew who he was and what he wanted to do. With his new single, "All Consuming Fire" coming out, along with an album release and a series of shows, Adrian is teaching the world the beauty in simplicity and sharing his illuminating story through music.
You've been involved with the arts since a young age. Tell us what originally prompted your interest in music.
For my 6th birthday, my parents threw a party for my sister and me in our Bronx apartment. There must have been 60 people there. We had a huge cake shaped like two bowling alleys and there were countless balloons, each with an individual little piece of paper in them. Every paper had a message written on it that you had to follow. Mine told me to perform in front of everybody and dance with a broom.
Conveniently, there's a Spanish record called "The Broom," La Escoba. The song played and while I danced, I just kept repeating "oh I like this" as my family cheered. A year after what I call, "the broom incident", I was picked to join the glee club and also started singing in church. That was the beginning.
Do you dabble in other areas of art or performance?
I'm also an actor, but singing was my first real passion. Interest in theatre came easily. At 8, I got my first job at a theater equity company as a production assistant. It was back when people started from the ground and worked their way up. At 13, I was doing all things technical and getting paid for it. At 16, I was working off-Broadway as an actor.
My inspiration for acting came immediately after watching Dustin Hoffman and Meryl Streep's performance in Kramer vs. Kramer. The film resonated with me and allowed me to reflect upon my own life along with my parent's divorce. I took interest in this ability to be an artist, but also transcend stories that reflect society and actually help people. I remember asking my mother where to go in order to get where I needed to be. She said "California." Now here I am.
Was there anything you considered doing as a career, besides music?
There never was. I always supported myself by doing different things, like working in the beauty industry, but it was always to moonlight, perform, put together a production or concert, etc. Once the bug hit me, I knew this was what I wanted to do.
What was the first song or album that really launched you into the music world?
A demo of mine floated around in 2000, titled "Living Without Love". It was playing in underground clubs, regionally. At some point, it reached the top 40 in Club Play, which ultimately lead me to the office of a record company.
Which leads me to my next topic. You turned down the first record label that took interest in you. Tell us what was going through your head at that time.
I went to a Christmas party where a bunch of producers from the label attended, you know, the big wigs. I grabbed a glass of champagne, introduced myself to the head of the label and the next week, we set up a meeting.
We were discussing launching me as an artist, but there was just one thing they wanted to alter. They said, "We think you're too gay." Its laughable now, and I'm glad it's laughable. But at the time, these companies were afraid records wouldn't sell if the artist wasn't straight as if the artist couldn't attract female consumers. A lot of people like me were going through the same thing - during the 'Latin music explosion'. I knew I couldn't be a genuine artist who speaks about living his truth when here I would be, living a lie. It was difficult, sure, and I lost a major opportunity, but I spent that time building myself and gaining experience. It was a blessing in disguise. I stepped aside and waited for the world to change, and it did.
"All Consuming Fire" is basically your comeback into the music scene. Can you tell us a little bit about the single, the album and the series of shows?
"All Consuming Fire" is the first single from the debut album. Now that time has passed, I'm finally here. It's Pop - inspirational and uplifting. The theme to my album is about coming into your truth, accepting yourself as you are and holding on to your spirit. The music video for "All Consuming Fire" is having a world premiere in a movie theater! It's showing at the historic Westwood Crest Theater in Los Angeles on November 11. This work is a culmination of my life experiences and what I've been through to get here. The album will drop in early 2016, with a tour across the United States.
Are you primarily a singer? Do you play instruments in the recordings as well?
Mainly, I sing. There are about 15 layers of voices and harmony in the vocals and I sang all of them. I also write most of my songs. When I'm writing songs, I use a keyboard, but I give my music to the musicians. I always hear a completely produced recording in my head and then I work to match it, note by note.
What are some interesting aspects of your life that you find inspiration in?
My little 9 year old Jack Russell, Gianni. I've had him since he was a little white potato and he's been with me through and through in this journey. He's taught me the power of simplicity and what it means to just be there for someone. It shifted my focus. What matters in life is the importance of relationships, not the hustle and bustle or what's on the calendar. After my first experience in the music industry, I moved to LA, settled, made friends, met the person I'm going to spend the rest of my life with, and just really developed an ultimately peaceful life. What gave me most inspiration was from living, not from working, and from letting life come through and happen. It's what I'm bringing to the record; my appreciated deep understanding of my relationships, and my spirit.
Is there anything else you'd like to tell us?
If you're in LA on November 11, come to the screening of the music video. I'm also performing live, it's going to be a great night.
To the young people: don't let life pass you by. Do what you love - it's worth it.
For free tickets to Adrian Wilson's All Consuming Fire at The Crest Movie Theater in Los Angeles, email: firstname.lastname@example.org or text 424-256-9080
To learn more about Adrian, his new releases and his upcoming performances, visit: www.AdrianWilsonWorld.com
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