This past Friday one of Roc Nation Latin’s new talents, Mr. Paradise, released the remix of his single “Forastero,” which has been rising in the Tidal charts!
Mr. Paradise was introduced to the newly formed Roc Nation Latin by a member of his management team, who also orchestrated the collaboration with Electric Bodega on the remix of “Forastero.” We were able catch up with both Mr. Paradise and the members of the music production duo, Electric Bodega.
The Knockturnal: Congratulations on all of your success thus far! How does it all feel?
Mr. Paradise: Thank you. It feels good just enjoying the process and focusing on what’s next.
The Knockturnal: You moved from the Dominican Republic to Spain when you were two years old, when did you make it to the U.S.?
Mr. Paradise: 2000
The Knockturnal: And growing up, who were your musical inspirations?
Mr. Paradise: Alejandro Sanz , Calle 13 and Wyclef Jean.
The Knockturnal: Were you musically inspired by them when you were in Spain, or did your introduction to their music happen when you came to the U.S.?
Mr. Paradise: It all happened once I got to the U.S. And the urge to express myself through music came as a form of expression around thirteen-fourteen years old, but I had already been influenced by the sounds of Wyclef.
The Knockturnal: You have a consistent message of condemning discrimination of any kind, what influenced this?
Mr. Paradise: Just living in Spain, and traveling back to the Dominican Republic. Also coming to America. Growing up in the three different cultures and countries made me realize that discrimination happens everywhere. I’ve experienced discrimination in my homeland, the United States, and in Spain. So it’s a consistent message.
The Knockturnal: How did you get introduced to the music business?
Mr. Paradise: It was pretty much myself. I started with the urge of expressing myself, that’s how I got into music and into the industry. For an independent artist, you have to do your homework and learn certain things. I also had the urge to make my music work independently. I went to school for it too. From a musical perspective, just keep doing your thing and you will make your way into the music industry. You just got to be consistent.
The Knockturnal: Now you are a signed artist to Roc Nation Latin, how did that come about?
Mr. Paradise: I think it started with the universe aligning things together. I met my manager (Cristina Novo) many years ago, fast forward to now I signed to Artistry & Records and Cris had a relationship with them and thought I was a perfect fit for Roc Nation Latin. It was all a combination of different things that happened at the right moment I guess.
The Knockturnal: What inspired the song “Forastero?”
Mr. Paradise: Traveling and all the people I’ve met. Everywhere I’ve been and how I felt. Everywhere I’ve been and how I felt. In a specific moment, you can meet a foreigner that doesn’t belong somewhere or feels like an outsider. That inspired lyrics behind the song. This remix was all kind of natural. Actually, I didn’t think anybody could touch [Forastero], for me that track was special and I didn’t think anybody could come and touch it. That was a big no-no for me. But these guys came up with this version of the remix and when I heard it the first time I really liked it. Once I hear something the first time and I like it, then I know it’s a go. It might take some work and it might be in its initial stage, but once I heard it the first time and I fall in love with it, then I know it’s going to work.
The Knockturnal: Though you did not directly work in the studio with Electric Bodega, is there anything you would like to say about your experience working with them?
Mr. Paradise: Actually, I had no idea about the song until it was done and Cris presented at the meeting and everyone in the room including me fell in love with it. The guys were excited and they could not wait for the release. So although the experience was not that personal with them, the way I would describe, with Electric Bodega, I think that this is the beginning of many great things that could come.
The Knockturnal: With recent hits like “Despacito,” do you think there a new market for Latin music here in the U.S.?
Mr. Paradise: I think the Latin market has been opening up progressively. Even hits that came before that’s been happening year after year. Maybe not as big as “Despacito,” but very close. Maybe “Despacito” is the last door that needed to be opened for us to get the attention that we really deserve. We can’t ignore how much Latin music has been influencing the American market for all of these years. It’s a good moment for the rest of the music to come along and be respected more and more.
The Knockturnal: How has it been going at Roc Nation Latin?
Mr. Paradise: It has been going great. We have the support that was promised in the beginning. The goal for me and my team is that we want to be able to make it different in what we do with Latin Alternative Hip Hop.
The Knockturnal: Are there any other projects that you are working on?
Mr. Paradise: Definitely! We are getting ready for our next big single which is called “Travesia.” Everything we are doing now is to build that momentum.
The Knockturnal: What is your end goal as an artist?
Mr. Paradise: Goals for me keep updating as the years go by, but right now, my end goal is to the most influential Latin Alternative Hip Hop artist. I want to represent other things that I’m feeling now. The urge to be more diverse. My end goal is to be as influential as I can be with everybody including the young kids. I want every song to come across really strong. To leave you speechless every time you hear Mr. Paradise. [My goals] keep updating because I want to keep making good music that speaks about things we go through.
The Knockturnal: Any other projects you want us to know about.
Mr. Paradise: Yes I have a new single coming soon called “Travesia” that is part of Transatlantico is the name is my album, and it summarizes the way I feel about growing up in between these three cultures. Every song is going to give you a transatlantic experience.
The Knockturnal: How did you two meet?
Klutch: We met through a mutual friend, Mike D.
Cash: I’ve been friends with Mike for a while and I think Klutch has too. He was trying to do collabs between different music things and clothing at the time and he put us in touch. From then, me and [DJ Klutch] just started doing early Electric Bodega stuff. We started doing remixes under our respective names…that’s when me and Klutch were like “look man, let’s just follow this up, package it, and let’s do this.”
The Knockturnal: Have you both worked with Mr. Paradise before, or is this the first time?
Cash: This is our first opportunity.
The Knockturnal: What was it like working on the song “Forastero?
Cash: It was dope! So we weren’t in the studio with him, but we definitely heard the original and his team approached our manager about working on this record. We definitely jumped at the opportunity. We loved it!
The Knockturnal: You’ve worked on many remixes of artists such as Justin Bieber, and songs like “Bad and Boujie,” do you usually work with the artists in the studios or do you produce the songs alone, elsewhere?
Cash: As far as the remixes go, most of those are just done remotely. We just do those on our own in the studio. We’ll get sent songs from the artist or management, but all our original stuff that we do with artist… we usually walk into the studio and catch a vibe!
Klutch: This one was a lot of fun to do!
The Knockturnal: What are your long-term goals as a music production duo?
Cash: Just to push out more original material. And establish ourselves on the the production side, as well as start doing some gigs on the DJ side.
The Knockturnal: Do you have original material in the works?
Cash: Yes! We actually have an EP with Nina Sky that should be dropping…in the next two weeks or so. The record “Locked Up,” we just did was in the Netflix original movie “You Got Me,” which is really dope. Other than that, we have a new single, “Collide,” coming out on Friday. But right now, it’s all about “Forastero.”