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Special interview with Ricky Martin

Over 90 million albums sold, 500 nominations, hits such as "Livin 'la vida loca" and "Maria" have earned him the title of king of Latin Pop. But also the commitment against human trafficking.

Thirty-seven-year career (he started at 12 with the band Me-naked), 90 million albums sold, 500 nominations, including an Emmy for his role in the TV series “The Assassination of Gianni Versace”, a husband ( artist Jwan Josef) and four children who keep him busy 24/7. Yet Enrique Martín Morales IV, alias Ricky Martin, King of Latin Pop, author of hits such as "Livinʼ la vida loca", "Shake your bon bonˮ," La bombaˮ, "Mariaˮ always seems the same, both for physical appearance and enthusiasm, to as it was in the video for “We are not alone”, shot in 2009 alongside Eros Ramazzotti. We interview him on the road, while he is involved in the Movimiento Tour, which started in February from Puerto Rico, where he was born, with a dense schedule of scheduled concerts (Covid-19 permitting) throughout Latin America.

What is the inspiration for Movimiento?

After the earthquake last year in Puerto Rico there was a mass protest against Governor Ricardo Rosselló, yet another corrupt politician. I chose to participate because it was the right opportunity to reconnect with my land and my people. Just because I don't live in Puerto Rico doesn't mean I've forgotten my roots. On that occasion I tried to understand how I could help them change the situation, I'm not a politician, but with my music I can reach people's hearts and help raise public awareness. The album I'm writing comes from people's global passion for justice, but it's also a romantic and positive album, the first single, "Tiburonesˮ, exudes this feeling ... The reality is that my music will always make you dance. , but that doesn't mean my lyrics have to be meaningless. This song is a metaphor about the frustration of my people, describing the things we would be willing to do to be together, to survive, we might even think about swimming allegorically ... with the tiburones, aka sharks. Unfortunately this is a global problem not only in Puerto Rico, we must fight and unite for justice to triumph. The protests of the French in yellow vests, those in Hong Kong or Mexican women against gender violence and femicides, are all consequences of a situation that is no longer sustainable, against which it is right to rebel. They are acts that are born out of balance and love of justice. I am a Latin spirit, and every day I live with passion, in any form.

What relationship do you have with Italy?

I love Italy and Italian music. I sang with Eros Ramazzotti, I worked with Laura Pausini, participated in the Festivalbar and Sanremo, all the tours in your country have always been a success, because Italians are like us Latins, they love life. I have always had a good relationship with Italy. “Vuelveˮ, one of my most successful songs was written by Franco De Vita.

Are there any musicians who make you dream?

Mina. You have a beautiful voice that transcends time. I really like her taste for her album covers, always innovative, provocative, refined and avant-garde. I find her collaboration with Mauro Balletti fantastic. And then David Bowie, because his ambiguous sexuality has always inspired me, when I looked at what he did I felt good.

You have been living in Los Angeles since 2016. Because?

After getting married to Jwan Yosef we looked for the right city to share our family life. Initially we were thinking of London or New York. Then we had the chance to spend time in LA and fell in love with the climate and relaxed atmosphere. I met Jwan because I am a collector and I really like his conceptual art. We bought a house designed by Gregory Ain, perfect for our art collection and our four children. Los Angeles also gave me the opportunity to return to acting on television. Working with Ryan Murphy on the Gianni Versace assassination series was a wonderful experience, culturally very interesting because Ryan is a true renaissance man, encyclopedic, curious about everything. I admired Versace a lot, not just as a designer, but as a man.

What is the relationship with your children?

They are children, I wish they had no thoughts at least until adolescence. We try to educate them to have a culture, without being too attached to material things. My children can only be spoiled by their grandparents.

When did you start your philanthropic work and how did you cultivate your activism?

I created my foundation over twenty years ago, out of a battle that continues today against human trafficking. At the time, I had no idea how extensive the problem of this horrendous crime was. My activism is centered on the well-being of trafficked children, forced into prostitution and submitting to pornography because they are vulnerable and try to protect their families. Often children become victims of this crime after a natural disaster, and it is there that we intervene to give physical and emotional support, bringing food and shelter, precisely to avoid the exploitation of the victims.

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