While she may be most recognizable as third place runner-up of the premiere season of NBC’s The Voice, Vicci Martinez has been making a name for herself in many other ways since 2011. Although her major label debut “Vicci” was released over a year ago, a recent surge for the single “Come Along” featuring singer CeeLo Green (and Martinez’s former coach on The Voice) is reminding fans what a powerhouse the pint-sized performer is. Her strong sultry vocals carry the eclectic album which blends pop, soul, and rock. Through it all, it seems the out artist has found, a sometimes elusive, balance- she’s a proud inspiration for gay and lesbian performers without being confined to playing strictly LGBT shows.
Martinez recently performed in San Diego for a sold out crowd with ZZ Ward as part of KPRi’s Green Flash Concert series at Birch Aquarium. But locals who missed out are in luck as she returns this weekend as part of San Diego’s Pride Festival.
Sounds in San Diego got a chance to interview the talented singer. Enjoy our li’l Q & A, catch Vicci Martinez on Pride’s main stage Sunday July 14 at 5 p.m, and keep an ear out for her upcoming summer single, “I Can Love.”
Sounds in San Diego: You recently participated in the Pride festivities in Portland. Tell me about that.
Vicci Martinez: It was my first Pride parade in my life. It was pretty awesome. I got emotional too. The part when I got the most emotional was when I saw the families and parents of those with HIV. That was like a knife in my heart.
SiSD: And how was your performance?
VM: It was good. I was nervous. It was kind of a dance party called “Hot Flash” with burlesque dancers and stuff like that. So that was before me and I was like ‘how am I gonna follow that shit?” But then it was cool because the DJ toned it down a little bit. The experience was amazing.
SiSD: How’s life on the road going? Are you exhausted?
VM: Normally, yes. But right now I’m staying at my friends’ house and they have a really great bed that they’re letting me use. I stay in hotel all the time and [my friends] have the best bed in the world and the best pillows. So the last couple days have been amazing…. and they have my favorite tequila at their house. The combination is amazing.
SiSD: So I have to ask- what’s your favorite tequila?
VM: My favorite now, because I’m not a big baller yet… is Cazadores Reposado. You don’t have a hangover, you just want more!
SiSD: Besides tequila, do you have any comforts from home on the road?
VM: My Jambox. It’s like a blue tooth speaker I can listen to music on. And it’s loud enough and it gets me in the mood
SiSD: What are you currently listening to?
VM: My favorite song right now is Kanye West’s “Click.” I also like “Blurred Lines” by Robin Thicke. And “Get Lucky” by Daft Punk. Those are my three favorites right now.
SiSD: Your music is in that vein- kind of pop but you have strong messages in your songs. Is that what you set out to do on your record?
VM: The only reason I play music and keep doing it is for that reason. I was raised super religious and felt that preacher mentality. So it’s the same with my music, I don’t want to force it on anybody but I want to have good messages. I want the intention to always be good and for whoever listens to take that with them.
SiSD: Anything in particular you’re looking forward to doing in San Diego when you get down here?
VM: I love it, I mean San Diego’s amazing. I think I may bring some family down with me and I’ll actually be down there twice. [Note: once was the sold out Green Flash concert series show and the next is this weekend’s Pride performance!]
SiSD: You’re pretty candid about your personal life, is there anything you keep close to the vest?
VM: Are you asking if I have any secrets? If I had a secret, I wouldn’t tell you! But you almost got me, if I had another shot of tequila right now maybe I would have told you.