Colombian by birth but resident in Miami, AleMor is one of the names to keep track of in the coming Latin Grammy, which will be celebrated this November 16 in Seville. With just over two years of musical career, the artist can boast two nominations for these great awards. This year Shares a nomination with artists of the stature of Camilo, Pablo Alborán and Julieta Venegas in the category of Best Pop Vocal Album thanks to his latest project, the album Beautiful Humans Vol. 1.
She is waiting for me inside a vinyl store in Noviciado, sitting on a sofa after several interviews, covered with a blanket and a coat (the cold has come to stay in Madrid, of course). We spoke at length with her about her feelings ahead of the Latin Grammys, the experience of being an independent artist, the work behind her latest album, impostor syndrome and her dream collaborations. within the Spanish industry. Will you join the conversation?
How are you? How are your first days in Spain going?
I’m so excited. Falling in love with this city every day, because it has been very nice all the people we have met in these days and all the vibe of the city, the food…
We are about to experience the Latin Grammys in Seville, what feelings do you have right now?
I am very excited to have the Latin Grammy experience in a city other than Las Vegas, because it is usually there. I like experiences that are living something for the first time. So that part has me excited, to be in a city for the first time, and even more so in a city as praised as Seville. Because all the people I have asked have told me that it is one of the most beautiful cities, that it is beautiful, that the people are very happy… All of that makes me very excited.
And beyond the experience of life itself, for the musical part you may feel not so much nerves but rather excitement. Of being in a category that is going to be televised, sharing the category with artists that I have been admiring for a long time, who have had careers a little longer than mine but that for some reason we are sharing.
This is the second time you have received a Latin Grammy nomination, you are nominated for Best Pop Vocal Album, how do you receive the news? How do you remember experiencing that nomination?
We were at our house, in Miami, and it was like nine thirty in the morning. And something that the Academy does that is very nice is a live broadcast through its website where they announce all the categories. We were all waiting there for the ones we thought might be coming out and well, when this one arrived, thank goodness I had left the coffee cup on the table, because I would have surely thrown it on the floor.
But it was a jump, it was a scream, it was excitement and then the phone didn’t stop ringing from all the people who were calling to congratulate us. It was a very beautiful moment.
You have been singing all your life but your professional career began a little over two years ago. With two nominations in these awards, does imposter syndrome ever arrive?
Maybe at the moment I saw the people with whom I was sharing the category (Camilo, Pablo Alborán and Julieta Vegenas are nominated in the same category). I did have a thought of ‘wow, what am I doing in this category, what am I doing here’. Then it’s like ‘no, well, if I’m here it’s for something’.
I think all human beings go through that at some point. But it didn’t last long, right after I said: ‘because I make good music, because I deserve it, because I have worked very hard to be here.’
This November 9 you present your album in Madrid, Beautiful Humans Vol. 1What inspired you when composing it? What did you want to convey?
The beauty of those compositions is that they were shared. It’s an album of collaborations and what inspired us… generally writing sessions start with a conversation about anything. It may be that you and I sit down and tell me, ‘I just met a person on the subway who told me…’ and from there you start a conversation.
All these songs were born like this, they were conversations that I had with friends who were telling me either about an experience of theirs or who were asking me about an experience of mine. And I think the common thread of the entire album is that they were all my own experiences. They were all situations that I have experienced at some point in my life. So I feel like that brings a little bit of coherence to everything that the album is.
Are you already working on volume 2?
Yes, I can’t sit still. Volume 1 had not been released and I was already in another writing session.
Is it also going to be collaborations or are it going to be solo songs? What can you tell?
What I like about Beautiful Humans As a concept, it is about collaborations. All the albums are going to be collaborations. Some collaborations may be instrumental… let’s say that another project that is more soloist would not be called that, it would be something else.
You are an independent artist and from what I have been able to see in interviews and statements it was a completely conscious decision. How do you come to make that decision? Why do you take it?
It’s a decision I don’t make alone. It’s a decision I make with my partner, who is also my husband, and what we observed was a lot of bad experiences from people close to us who were signed to record labels. Or not so much bad experiences as we realized that even though they were signed to record labels, they did not have all the resources available. It wasn’t that they were always doing things with quality but it was like there were so many people signed to the label that they gave you very little attention, very little priority. And seeing all that we understood that in reality what they do is give you the money, you know? A large percentage of what they give you is a budget for you to work on your project.
We thought that we could get the contacts by doing a lot of networking at different events, and you would get the money in a bank. So we went to a bank and asked for a line of credit for the company and that’s how we put the album forward. We don’t owe anyone anything else.
I have also heard that you are very happy to own your own work and your own masters, which is something that many mainstream artists do not have. We are now seeing Taylor Swift re-record her first six albums precisely because of this and she is an international star. I understand that it is not a decision you will regret.
Do you have any advice for small and independent artists who see your career as an example to follow?
I would have three pieces of advice that I think are the most important. The first is to make the music that you like, not necessarily the music that is fashionable or what you think is going to make you famous. May the music be coherent with you.
The second is to organize and inform yourself. Because there are many things that the record label does that you, being an independent artist, have to learn. For example, I learned what it was like to open a company in the United States, about the dynamics of company taxes there, how that works, what I should do. There is a lot of information you must learn to pave a path that leads you to success.
The third and most important thing is to learn to ask for help. Very important to ask for help. There are many things that I can’t do alone. And just because I’m an independent artist doesn’t mean I have to do everything alone. I am fortunate to be surrounded by people who believe in my project like me or more than me. And I have to allow people to help me.
When did you make the decision to publish your first song and launch yourself into this world?
The first time I published a song it was a cover. We did it intentionally because it was the first time I was going to do it and I didn’t know many things. I didn’t know how to upload a song to Spotify, for example. And we decided to record a couple of covers and release them. But we did it that way because I knew I was going to make a mistake and I was wrong. Although I didn’t want to make a mistake with a song of my own. I’d rather make a mistake with a song than if I have to download it, I’ll lower it and nothing happens. We upload one of The skinny girl, a Britney Spears cover… we uploaded some things. That was the first time and I felt a little dizzy. Thinking ‘wow, this is out, people can hear it’.
You talked about the cover of The skinny girl by Pau Donés, I don’t know if it is a reference when it comes to making your music.
And is there a Spanish artist or someone from our industry right now that you would like to collaborate with?
I would love to collaborate with Marina Carmona… If I could make a song with C. Tangana it would be impressive and beyond that, going bigger, I would love to make a collaboration with Alejandro Sanz. Would be a dream.
I’ve been checking your social media and I’ve seen that you have a TikTok account. One of your tips for artists is to make music that represents them and not that may be trendy. How do you experience the rise of TikTok as a platform for artists?
Disk distribution Beautiful Humans It is through the TikTok distributor. For me it is a great tool but I confess that it is overwhelming to have to think about uploading a video for each platform. Now there are so many options to reach a different audience… I feel like I’m adding four more things to the to-do list in my day to day life and it can be a little overwhelming. And then I remember that I am my record label and that I have to do it, with a smile on my face, but I do it happily because I am the owner of my time, my image, my masters… I think it is a good tool and at the same time overwhelming.
Has it conditioned you at any time when composing or publishing? The thinking: I have to make this song for TikTok.
Not really. There is a wonderful video that Adele made a few months ago in which she said the same thing: ‘the record label is telling me to make music for TikTok.’ And she answered: ‘I don’t want to make music for people who are watching TikTok, I want to make music for people my age who are realizing that they have to go to therapy, that they have to unlearn a lot of things, that They have to cry…’ That’s what I want: I want to make music for those people. And I said ‘sure, I’m those people.’ I am the audience she sings to. And I find it interesting that they view the TikTok platform solely through that lens. Because for me TikTok is super informative, super educational, I have found tutorials on how to do things on TikTok and not on YouTube. They get to the point faster: This is how it is done.
If at any time I had that thought of making a viral song, I quickly dismissed it. And after seeing Adele saying that I said, exactly, I agree with you.
Finally, how does the end of 2023 and the beginning of 2024 look like for you musically?
What remains of 2023 and now for 2024 I think is to continue promoting the album. I feel that Beautiful Humans It is an album that deserves long and extensive promotion. And obviously we will continue working on the creation of volume 2. I would love to return to Spain and take advantage of how they have welcomed us here because I have felt at home. And take advantage of the ‘beautiful humans’ here.