From: NY, United States
Genre: Latin, Bachata, Pop
Born in the Dominican Republic and raised in New York City, up and coming singer- songwriter Anthony “J’Martin” Espinal emerged as one of the most promising artists in the Latin recording industry today.
Discipline and hard work have been the main standards throughout his life and career, ever since he started working at age 9 along with his father, Martin, in a bodega (grocery store) in Brooklyn. Today, J’Martin is one of the most versatile performers within Bachata Urbana, and as a successful entrepreneur who heads the largest independent supermarket chain in the Tri-State Area.
His name and recognition have gone beyond his 20+ year business career and today, “J’Martin” has been pointed out by specialized critics as one of the main talents behind the new sounds of Bachata while many of his songs climb rapidly the charts. In 2011, he was nominated to the respected “Premio Lo Nuestro” in the category “Best New Artist” and won People en Español Magazine’s award for “Best New Tropical Artist”.
J’Martin’s musical roots go back to his early days in Santiago, the town where he spent most of his childhood. His mother, Altagracia, was the catalyst of a musical career while his father transmitted his negotiating skills. His passion for music and natural entrepreneurial abilities were a part of him since a very young age. At 11, he was working along with his father in a grocery store and conducting small businesses in his spare time. Before he turned 13, he was looking to launch his independent career in music but his father suggested he waited a few years more. By the time he was 15, J’Martin started to develop a musical concept ignited by the fusion of New York City’s cosmopolitan inspiration and his Caribbean influence.
One of the first main genres that captured his attention was Freestyle, which was being performed by an A list of top artists from Puerto Rico and Dominican Republic: Marc Anthony, George LaMond and La India were true role models that helped him shape an original and distinctive music style that fused drums and accordions from his native Dominican Republic with new multicultural exciting sounds.
This was also the time when J’Martin had to abandon his studies in Business Administration to pursue a commercial opportunity: he organized, restructured and coordinated a new business strategy for a supermarket that was going through financial hardship. His experience and hard work turned this project into one of the most successful and profitable supermarket chains in the New York Tri-State Area today. An efficient and capable executive by his own right, J’Martin‘s most recent projects also include the launch of an online supermarket store and a new brand of bottled water.
Throughout this commercial run, his creativity in music never stopped flowing. J’Martin was simultaneously working in Merengue-based projects, such as Baby Band between 1993 and 1998. After several recordings and live appearances, he landed the hit single “Intentalo” in the top of the Latin Tropical charts. “Intentalo”, which became a true single hit, included the collaboration from the celebrated Magic Juan (Proyecto Uno) and was composed together with famed producer Francis Bencosme. The lyrics of the song were inspired in the art to find a philosophical solution for the difficult situations we all experience in our lives.
‘Para Ti’ (For You) was released in 2011 featuring 13 tunes and became one of the hottest albums of the year, earning great airplay in local radio stations in USA, Puerto Rico, Dominican Republic and key markets across Latin America. The album, which also had countless downloads on the iTunes store, included collaborations from Grizel del Valle in the track “Leyes del Amor” and Melina Leon, on “No Soy Tu Tipo”.
His constantly enriching experience on business administration has been crucial to build a solid career with a bright present and promising future. This has also been nurtured by everyday contact with collaborators and employees, who became a true artistic inspiration. In his everyday life, tours and shows alternate with meetings with lawyers and accountants.
But music and business are not the only concerns in J’Martin’s life. His two main priorities are his family and his philanthropic work related to AIDS—he was recently named “Padrino” of the Latin Comission of AIDS, which works to raise awareness and promote HIV education.
Just like when he was a kid, hard work and discipline are today his main standards to become an inspiring individual in such diverse aspects of life.