1 Part Old School, 1 Part Pop, 4 Parts Latin makes a Scrumptious Cocktail of Sound
Everyone knows the cliché, whatever goes around, comes around. There are four gentlemen that are looking to revamp that cliché. Whatever goes around, comes around with a modern twist. Manny, Sosa, Frito and Winston, otherwise known as, Tha Heights bring music connoisseurs a sound that hasn’t been heard before; a sound Tha Heights named Latin Pop & B. In this sound, you will certainly hear their Latin roots, Pop’s catchy melodies and Old School R&B’s sexy, romantic vibe meshed together to create a blend that is as pleasing to the ears as they are to the eyes. Tha Heights have been performing all over the NYC Metropolitan Area, nationally over the years as the Official Spokespeople for Bazooka Bubblegum and will soon become an International super group. So, save some room on your iPod for a brand new genre that’s sure to aurally please you.
How do you explain the genre that you created, Latin Pop & B?
Winston: Patricia Taylor, our manager and CEO of Offbeat Entertainment, actually coined the term Latin Pop & B for us. We all grew up listening to Latin music because that’s what our parents listened to and also it’s our culture. We decided to keep the Latin aspect of everything and incorporate the music that we listen to and love today which is Pop and R&B.
All four of you have been inspired by various musical genres. How were you able to mesh those sounds to create a cohesive sound for the group?
Manny: We were born and raised with Spanish music and Pop and R&B so we just try to incorporate the different styles with our sound.
Individually, how did you know music would be your path in life?
Frito: When I was younger, I used to watch music videos and I would get up and emulate them. Music was just a part of my everyday life and it was a love I had for it. We used to harmonize and create notes. After the first talent show we did, that was it.
Manny: My mom and grandmother were very into music and it was just a feeling I would get listening to our music. From there on out, I knew music was what I had to do.
Sosa: As a young boy, everyone had aspirations and dreams of being an actor, living the glamorous life, but that wasn’t the case with me. I was always told to go to school, get an education, live the regular life, you know? I sang for a friend one time and he told me I had a good voice, so I felt like I could really do this from his positive reaction.
Winston: I fell in love with music back when I was younger, I used to use music as a way to get away from reality where you’re going through problems with anything in your life. You listen to a certain song that you like and you listen to a certain emotion that the artist is giving you. I loved that fact that music was so inspirational and I wanted to be inspirational to other people and other young people that want to see other people make it and love music.
As a group, what hardships have you faced in the ever-changing music industry?
Sosa: Usually when we get on stage, people think, ‘oh God, they’re going to come out rapping or doing reggaeton.’ You usually never see four Spanish guys doing R&B. So this is just a testament on how the music industry is changing. So, we just get up there and start singing Motown and we break down the stereotypes that people may have.
Also, going to the record companies and trying to get a deal. They don’t really know how to market us.
What’s going on right now with Tha Heights?
Winston: We’re getting ready to put out a reality show— Tha Heights: An Offbeat Experience. We’re putting everything together for the pilot. Our album should be out by 2009.
Frito: We also have a video single coming out on Music Choice pretty soon, it’s called ‘Neva Be the Same.’
You guys have been working like maniacs to get yourselves out there. Do you feel like you’ve been embraced by people outside the Latino culture?
Winston: Yeah, we take it back to the old school harmonies. We do anything from Temptations to Marvin Gaye, Michael Jackson. We take it back to a time when music was joyful. We sing a song and people say, ‘oh my God, I remember that song!’ They remember the first time hearing that song and it’s like we incorporate old school classics with what we do now.
Manny: The Spanish market is not the only market that we’re aiming for right now.
What about men? Do you feel as though a group of men have a harder time gaining male fans?
Frito: It’s actually pretty easy. They find that in the songs that we sing, they are going through the same problems with their girlfriends or just life in general. Most guys appreciate what we’re doing and the type of music we’re trying to push.
How do you plan on changing the way the listening public sees boy bands?
Winston: Well, first of all, we’re not a boy band. *he laughs* Just want to put that out there. We’re just trying to show the listeners that we have a different sound, something different to offer to our genre and everybody out there right now. The music that we do is happy, feel good music. It’s not you ordinary, regular, basic R&B love song or catchy Spanish song. We try to incorporate everything. It could be Rock & Roll, Pop, Latin straight up, Spanglish; we do all art forms, not just one thing.
Is there a designated leader of the group?
Winston: To be honest with you, we all take the lead role when it needs to be taken. We don’t have a designated leader, we’re all leaders.
Sosa: That’s the advantage of being in a group. We all pick each other up. Sometimes, somebody could be having a bad day; we’re all brothers here, so we help each other out. There is no real leader, just a family right here.
Have any of you ever thought about going solo?
Sosa: We’re so focused on making Tha Heights movement and achieving our goals, that going solo ain’t even in our thought processes right now. We’re just trying to make history.
Where can we go to listen to your music?
Anything you want to add?
Winston: I want to thank the fans for showing us support. Keep on looking out for Tha Heights movement. Keep supporting us. We do all this for you! We love you and appreciate everything that you do for us.
Manny: Look out for Tha Heights in 2009.
Sosa: I just want to thank everybody that have supported Tha Heights since the beginning. I want to thank the up and coming fans of the future and any and everybody that’s showing love.