Unsigned but not unloved – Carlos Andrez

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22-year-old singer-songwriter Carlos Andrez discovered his love for music at a very young age through the influences in his life and in mainstream media. GIGsoup had the opportunity to catch up with the upcoming artist to talk about his music (featuring XXXTentacion) and what it takes to make it as an artist.

For those who don’t know you yet, can you introduce yourself?

My name is Carlos Andrez, my middle name is Andrez so I just put it together to create my artist name. I came here from Ecuador when I was about 6 years old and i’m lucky my parents were so stubborn with learning English that the only way we would communicate was through Spanish because I really love making Latin music. I’ve lived almost everywhere in Florida since I was about 12/13 years old. That’s when I really settled down here and i’ve just been a little goofball ever since. I took music seriously about a year ago and I have a really good team behind me.

Are you currently in school? 

I was until 5 months ago. I was going to Florida Atlantic University. It’s one of the good ones but I just couldn’t do that anymore. I started getting very busy. I had to leave something and it wasn’t going to be music.

How would you describe your music?

It’s definitely a merge of Pop and Hip Hop. It varies though because when I do Latin music I usually add a little Pop or a little Trap on it. The music that’s out right now is specially R&B’ish but the music i’m about to release is very Hip Hop/Trap’ish with that touch of R&B. We’re doing that whole Latin and English crossover but it’s kind of like a different style and i’m not sure how to describe it. To give you a solid answer, my music would be a merge of Hip Hop, Pop and R&B.

Who are your biggest influences? 

Drake has always been my guy, he was the one that sparked my interest in music. Celebrity wise, Drake, J. Cole, and Russ are my biggest influences. One of the people that actually inspires me daily is one of my good friends, Tvlkless. He’s an Indie Rock artist. He came over to my house one time and we had a deep conversation. He asked me what I was doing and I said I was going to school and making music. He looked at me like ‘what are you doing?! why?’ It was a long conversation and he just really convinced me to drop out. After that day I started taking music much more seriously. It was a HUGE risk but i’m glad it’s working out. My whole team is doing super well and it just works. Tvlkless definitely gave me that kick and he keeps on inspiring me everyday.

Tell me about your experience at Sunfest back in August? 

It was awesome! I opened up for Fetty Wap at Sunfest last year. I was going to go again this year but I got very busy and had to go to LA for work. I haven’t really done venues yet just because we want to preserve our sense of image. We just want to make sure the shows that we do are really good. I’d rather do one or two shows every six months that are like “WHOAH” rather than doing shows every weekend at random venues. Right now, we’re just focused on making music and concentrated on all these visuals so that we can be ready for when that big opportunity comes.  

You must have a lot of unreleased music then. 

Yeah, we actually have a lot of music but we can’t release them yet. We just want to release them properly, you know? I’m just excited because people listen to the music that’s out right now and they’re asking for more and i’m like “yo you have no idea what else we have.” It’s crazy, I took music seriously about a year ago and I have a really good team behind me. It’s just a fun time here, I love it.

How did you end up recording “I don’t even speak spanish lol” with XXXTentacion?

Well, that’s a crazy story actually! First, I’d like to say thank you XXXTentacion for touching so many people throughout his journey, including me. Beyond blessed to be part of such a timeless album. Thank you for your energy, wisdom and love. RIP Jah.

Initially, it was just me, Judah and Rio Santana on a track. I had released a song called ‘Sway’ two months before XXXTentacion‘s album dropped. I guess he must’ve been working on his album at a studio in Sunrise and the engineer that was engineering his session had helped me with my track and he played it for him. XXXTentacion was looking for another song for his album and he really liked mine and wanted to jump in on it. He was like “I need a verse on this, I need a verse on this.” Then my song ‘Sway’ turned into ‘I don’t even speak spanish lol’. I actually found out about this through his Instagram story. I didn’t know anything about this and I go to his story and hear my song and i’m just like “what’s going on?” It was just crazy. Honestly, it was just a blessing and luck at the same time. It was good timing for us.  

My favorite song of yours are “5am” and “To Myself”. Can you tell me what motivated you to write them and your process when writing a new song? 

Thank you. I actually recorded “5am” in my room. It was an old song, back when I started recording music and it was my first song ever. I had archived it and when I heard it again with Judah, I didn’t even know it was that one. I forgot what it even sounded like. I heard it again and was like “this is actually really good.” We recorded Judah’s part, remixed it and then uploaded it. I actually planned on never releasing that because the quality wasn’t the best but we got it done and released it.

For “To Myself”, I found this really cool producer, Chris Punsalan, on Youtube and he was doing a challenge on Instagram called ‘365 Day A Beat’ challenge. I reached out cause his beats were crazy! He replied back within the minute saying he sent me some beats. I checked my email and saw he sent me 10 beats. One of the beats was one I used for “To Myself.” I went to my studio and once I did the freestyle over the beat, I was able to get a solid song. I just get in the studio and freestyle whatever is in my head. I sent Punsalan a demo and he went crazy over it.

And “5am” is getting its own music video, right?

We’re almost done with it! We’re just missing one more scene and it will most likely drop at the end of June. There are some things we have to set in place. There’s a song called “Te Bote” by Bad Bunny and I’m doing a remix with an artist from here in Miami named Ambrxse. We’re dropping that video first, then a show in Boca Raton then we’re dropping the visuals for “5am”. We’re excited.

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What can fans expect from the album “Toxic Paradise”?

It’s literally a whole album about my ex. It’s so vulnerable. I’m very open and honest in this album. There was a moment in my life where I just had to speak on it and I didn’t really have anyone to talk to about it. I just don’t like getting that side out but I did what I could at the time, which was through music. I can’t wait to be in the right space to drop the whole project.

Is there anyone in particular you hope to collaborate with?

I freak out everytime I think about this but I would love to collaborate with Drake. Like who wouldn’t?! There’s so many I would love to collaborate with. Eventually I’d want to collab with Kanye West, Swae Lee, Khalid, Jhene Aiko or Russ. I love Russ! I just love everything he stands for, you know? He would go against the world for one tiny opinion. He has such a strong vibe.

Which one of your own songs is your favorite or was your favorite to put together? Why?

“Cuerpo a Cuerpo” mostly because it’s the song that sparked my Latin drive. It was like no one else is doing this. You’re either a Latin artist or an English artist and i’m trying to do a crossover. That’s what we’re trying to tackle. That song was a large realization that we can really, really do this bilingual music. 

What’s your goal by the end of the year?

By then I should have a good amount of songs out, maybe with a few big artists. Hopefully still be independent because we don’t really want to sign with anybody. We have such a big vision and it’s just hard to change that right now. We’re open to talking to everyone, of course, but I think if the right deal is there, we’d take it. We’re just gonna keep doing what we’re doing to get there and keep chasing growth.