September 26, 2016


Future Hispanic History Month: Melanie Martinez's Quirky Charm

Getty Images
Getty Images

We're celebrating National Hispanic Heritage Month with Future Hispanic History Month, which will highlight rising stars who are creating history before our very eyes. Today we are honoring one of the more exciting rising stars to come out of pop in recent years—Melanie Martinez.

There's a reason why she was chosen as our Fuse First artist back in April! The 21-year-old singer, who is of Puerto Rican and Dominican descent, first caught everyone's attention during the third season of The Voice. Despite only making it to week five on Adam Levine's team, Melanie used the loss as motivation to jumpstart her pop career.

Two years after The Voice, she released her debut Dollhouse EP that featured the sole track that would help Melanie push herself even further into the spotlight—"Carousel," which was used in American Horror Story: Freak Show promos. The singer was able to bring her quirky nostalgia-based aesthetics into the mainstream, something that hasn't been seen in the female pop arena since the arrivals of Lady Gaga and Lana Del Rey.

Whether its throughout her debut Crybaby album (released in Aug. 2015) or on stage at music festivals, Melanie expertly brings her twisted doll concepts to life. The pieces of her charming alter ego (her Cruella De Vil-inspired two-toned hair, her Lolita costumes, the array of tattoos that could double as kids' storybook art, sticking to the dark nursery rhyme themes in her videos, blippy trap-infused songs, etc.) isn't something that is typically seen in the Latina world. 

But Melanie isn't afraid to steer away from the norm and doesn't use what's expected of her (like explicit sex appeal) to drive her art. And the haunting catchiness in her co-written songs like "Sippy Cup," "Pity Party," "Tag, You're It" and "Milk and Cookies" are hard to ignore. This is what makes the singer such a refreshing addition to the mainstream pop world, where she shows young women—Latina or not—that it's perfectly fine to own your quirkiness. 

Melanie revealed this month that her sophomore album could be dropping as early as next year, and that she has two more self-directed videos on the way. This ambition, as well as a hunger to create as much art as she can, is what will help the singer secure a welcomed spot in the future of National Hispanic Heritage Month.

Below, watch Melanie Martinez detail what we can expect from her next album with Fuse: