“My music represents freedom and joy! It is capable of giving the impulses which make life interesting and surprising. This allows one to feel solace from their problems and experiences.” says Vincent Barrea, a performer, musician, and dancer.
Vincent is the opening artist of the new British label Maitre. With each single, he reveals new facets to his work ranging from the fiery club banger Zoom Zoom to the stylish vibrations of the deep house, the hot reggaeton motifs, and the current trends in the world of pop music.
Check out our interview below, where Vincent talks about his musical background, his new single – Zoom Zoom, and top highlights of 2018.
T.H.E – Hey Vincent! Welcome to T.H.E – Music Essentials. What have you been up to?
Vincent Barrea – Hi guys, delighted to meet you! While all this time I presumed to be seeking myself, apparently I have been preparing to become an artist. I’ve been acting on stage, did dancing and singing and at the same time fighting my weight, haha — you know, all these things that artists do. I ’m an active still photographer, and I run a public music group that is quite popular in CIS countries. By the way, this is the very first time I am not interviewing but instead being interviewed myself (laughs).
T.H.E – Let’s talk a bit about you started off in the music scene. What inspired you to become a musician and which artists inspired you at that point in time?
Vincent Barrea – Music has always been the strongest passion of mine. It all started with collecting records because when I was a kid, it was all on and about CDs. Compiling tracks was so much fun. I would walk around record shops several times and buy CDs that I fancied, most to make my playlists and compilations from this sourced material.
Each time I listen to music in headphones, even these days, I imagine that those are my tracks and vocals. And at that point, the way I walk around and look at passerby, everything changes momentarily. I have always associated myself with music, and I have always known that sooner or later, I’ll be onstage.
I have been captivated by different genres and styles throughout my lifetime: from serious academic music, opera, and jazz, all the way to the 90s R&B vocal groups (Boyz II Men, Take 6). Looking at my favorite playlists from ten years ago would reveal the names of Luther Vandross, Whitney Houston, George Benson, Aretha Franklin, Chaka Khan, Yolanda Adams, and Cece Winans. I think they were an initial and predominant influence on me.
Currently, I regularly spin Afrika Bambaataa and Technotronic. As for Ibeyi, A/T/O/S, Sevdaliza, Black Atlass, JMSN, Zebra Katz, these few are among contemporary artists giving me shivers and waves of joy to date.
T.H.E – You are a musician, performer, and a dancer. If you have to select the strongest interest area for you, what would it be?
Vincent Barrea – Performance, for sure. It synthesizes and blends dancing, music, lighting, elements of a visual show all under one roof. I like putting different parts together into one puzzle, and when executed properly, it starts projecting one sole energy vibe and starts to amaze, bringing out the magic!
T.H.E – Your singles have drawn influences from multiple genres like pop, reggaeton, deep house etc. Is this a conscious call, wherein you don’t want to stick to one genre, but experiment continuously?
Vincent Barrea – I definitely want to experiment. It’s not just music that is the point of my experiments, this is my usual approach towards anything, including my style overall. I get bored in no time, and I am 100% sure that I would be extremely lacking space if I were to limit myself to one stylistic direction only. I strive towards expressing as much as possible through music, motions, pictures, and videos; thereby some stylistic mixture is a pre-requisite for me.
T.H.E – If that’s the case, how best would you define your sound?
Vincent Barrea – I am yet to define my sound, and I don’t even make the slightest attempt at it. It is entirely possible that my next tracks will make a complete U-turn, so I’m not trying to characterize my music in any terms. Together with my team, we are just fueled by the fire inside us that drives us on our creative path.
T.H.E – Your new single ‘Zoom Zoom’ is quite impressive. How long was it in the works?
Vincent Barrea – It took us a mere day to have finished recording the song itself. The session was a piece of cake, we instantly got the workflow right, and everything panned out. Also, it took us only a day to shoot the video, and a few days of rehearsal beforehand. There were stuntmen and dancers involved, and the video director set a challenging task in general, but that is why I decided to bond with this team. Dealing with them is always a tough but exciting call, and in the end, everyone gets the result they are content with.
T.H.E – What is the concept for the music video? And how was it working with Tata Belinina?
Vincent Barrea – The concept depicts my character as a self-assured, confident lad running his auto shop, he’s definitely in his seat, and he is happy with his life, business, and girls working and dancing with him. A handsome type and an oblivious MF to some extent.
Tata is a stern and strict director. She will never empathize you and feel sorry for you; she’ll never make an allowance for your worn-out condition or bruised arms and legs. I had no choice other than to be tip-toeing on set, and the next thing I know, I was turning upside down on camera. I mean, she is impenetrable to your charisma, and if she said that you are going to do a take one hundred times, you have no other options, you will.
Nevertheless, that’s the approach a director aiming at a successful result should cultivate. ‘Zoom Zoom’ looks so cool thanks to Tata explicitly, her highly professional attitude and her perfect taste. Tata, if you are reading this, I love you)
T.H.E – How was it working with the London music label – Maitre, for this particular track?
Vincent Barrea – Let me put it straight, I have always been wary of record labels, and I have always expected to be defrauded by them. Though through work with Maitre I have realized that I am ready to be doing anything, everything, anywhere, with them, I’ll just agree to any of there terms, there amazing. I have developed 100% trust towards my label. They’re enthusiastic, they’re always experimenting with sound, they’re always looking for new solutions, and they’re rarely following cliches and ready-available formulas. These young guys don’t approach music as a business only; they consider it as a science. The science of improving people’s mental and physical well-being. Still, their time to uncover this field of knowledge, and their full story, is yet to come.
T.H.E – 2018 is almost getting to a close. How would you describe your top highlights of this year, and what are your plans for 2019 from a touring and production point of view?
Vincent Barrea – We were getting ready for the project launch as early as this summer. It was an emotionally and psychologically demanding process: at the time of the release, I had already prioritized everything, burnt down the bridges, and felt the willingness to devote myself to music entirely. At this point, a Grammy-nominated sound engineer Alex Evans is polishing two other singles while we have already started working under a new album. So I know for sure, we’re going full throttle in 2019, and we’re going to be on fire!
Follow Vincent Barrea on Facebook, here.