19 year old Jennifer Torrejon aka J Grace is well on her way towards becoming a household name. The fiercely talented, utterly beautiful LA-native has a singing voice and style so dazzling her star power is simply undeniable. But what truly separates J Grace from the competition within the pop world is how proudly she embraces her Peruvian and Honduran cultural roots, and it absolutely shines through in her music, giving her a broadly unique appeal. Growing up dancing and singing along to a fascinating mix of 1980’s American Pop, Latin Pop, Salsa, and Meringue (all of which were regularly playing within her household thanks to her musical parents), J has created a sound that combines all of these genres into one remarkably fresh sound that’s all her own. A true fan of the arts, she attended Performing Arts school in Los Angeles where she studied music theory, singing, dance, acting and songwriting, positioning herself as a multi talented integrity based pop artist. And perhaps most important, she’s enthusiastically following in the footsteps of early Latin based crossover pop pioneers, such as Selena Quintanilla, Jennifer Lopez, Enrique Iglesias, Lisa Lisa, Shakira and even International Pop icon Madonna, in that she reflects the ever-growing Latin demographic in the US today.
Her debut single “Love Me” is an upbeat pop gem that stirs up nostalgic feelings of summer nights and young romance – echoing the alluring power of love and reminds us that it’s worth fighting for no matter what life throws our way. Taking the song to even greater heights, J Grace teamed up with mega popular Mexican/American singer, Frankie J (former member of Kumbia Kings), who gives a memorable performance, adding just the right flavor and balance to the song.We briefly spoke to J Grace about her recent release of her single, “Love Me”, and got to know her a bit better right here on ET!
Tell us about your latest release, “Love Me Feat. Frankie J? What was the writing process like? My single “Love Me” was written by Frankie J, and was introduced to me by Frankie himself.
What can you tell us about the recording process of this track? The recording process was definitely one to always remember. Frankie wrote the song about 10 years ago, and when my team and I had told him we were bringing Freestyle music back, he thought the song fit perfectly for what I was doing. It all happened at the right time! The way I like to think of it is like he had this song kept away until that day I met him for the first time. We ended up recording the song that same night.
What was it like working with Frankie J? I enjoyed every second I spent with Frankie in the studio. I learned a lot from him in just one night, and it was an honor to see the way he works. He put his all in getting the very best out of me for this song, and I will never forget that.
How would you describe your genre? When did you first discover your love for it? I don’t think this is an official genre but I would consider my genre being Freestyle Pop. I grew up listening to 80’s music, and the musical elements in it always caught my ear. My parents always had music from that era playing at home, including freestyle. But I really started listening and studying freestyle just about a year ago. This is when I was introduced to artists such as Sweet Sensation, Expose, Lisa Lisa & Cult Jam, and from there I knew this was something special to bring back to today’s generation of music.
How about the music video for “Love Me”? What was it like filming large dance scenes like those in the video? Filming the large dance scenes was one of my favorite parts of the video shoot. Since I was dancing with a large group of dancers we had to make sure we got the choreography down and that we were all in sync, so it definitely took us a couple takes. I loved dancing with all of the amazing dancers, each one of them are incredibly talented and I’m so glad they got to be a part of the experience!
Who are some of your influences when it comes to creating and performing? Why? My number one influence when it comes to performing would have to be Selena Quintanilla. She is everything to me. She had the IT factor and never failed to entertain her audience. I have looked up to her and studied her ever since I was a little girl. You couldn’t help but admire her, not only for her impeccable talent but who she was as a person. She was so genuine and had poise on and off stage, and that’s something I hope people will see in me one day as well.
What is your favorite part of performing? My favorite part of performing is the feeling it gives me and the energy I receive from the audience. When I’m up on stage it’s like a totally different world, so many emotions and adrenaline are running through me and it’s something I wouldn’t trade for the world. It’s important to me that I make my audience feel or relate the message I’m sending across every single time I’m performing.
What takes up your time when you aren’t writing or performing? Aside from being a singer, I am also an actress so every week I have a couple auditions that I go to. I love spending time with my family, going to the movies, hanging out with friends, and hiking!! I absolutely love nature and I’m always finding new trails to explore.
What is next for you in 2016? In 2016, my fans can look forward to more shows coming up. I will also be planning for my next music video, and most importantly, making more music for my lovely fans! I feel so blessed and grateful for all the support I’ve been receiving, I can’t begin to explain how much it means to me. This year is going to be another incredible journey and experience!