Red California is an up-and-coming singer from Spain who broke into the Salsa scene after three months in quarantine with fresh new music and a saucy new release, “Boca Sexy.” The new release follows her first single, “Tarragona,” which has amassed over 30,000 views on YouTube.
The singer is breaking barriers in the salsa world by challenging gender stereotypes in salsa dancing.
“Because I dance salsa, I feel connected to a worldwide community of dancers, and because I love dancing, I wanted to create music to offer something back to the community,” she explains.
How long have you been creating your art?
Since I was 16, when I picked my grandad’s old guitar and started playing “La Cucaracha” with one string. A few months later I improved enough to start creating songs, even though I did not feel confident enough to perform for anyone.
Where are you from? How does that influence your art?
I am from Barcelona, Spain but also lived in Dublin for many years. In this area of Spain, we mainly speak Catalan. The Catalan language influences me to create music that has never been heard in my native tongue—Latin music is not a common genre in Catalan. I love writing salsa, bachata, and cha-cha songs because that is the music I love to dance to. My latest single, “Boca Sexy,” is a salsa song, which is written and sung in Catalan…to my knowledge, I am the first artist to sing a salsa song in this language.
What projects are you currently working on? Do you have any upcoming releases?
I’m currently working on new music and new videos. My goal is to release a new single every two months. In my new music video, you will see a lot of me in front of the camera, but many people might be surprised to know that I’m also the director. Each song has a different taste and personality, so right now I am busy planning out my next series of videos. The videos I create truly capture the spirit of the music I make, and that is really exciting to me.
What is your inspiration? And why?
I love creating music that makes people want to dance. To be honest, I’m a bit obsessed with that at the moment. I just want to release music that makes people happy. You know, the kind of music that when you listen to it, it makes you want to come to a show, see it performed live, and move your feet.
Why is music important to the queer community?
As a salsa dancer, I have witnessed the lack of equality in the salsa community. People assume that because you are a girl, you don’t want to dance lead, or even worse, instructors refuse to teach you lead because you are a girl. I am a lesbian, and I want to dance with other women. I want to help change stereotypes in music and dancing. My way of doing that is by featuring same-sex couples dancing salsa in my videos.
From the songwriting side, all my songs are written about personal experiences I have had with other women. I will of course reflect that in my upcoming videos. I am not going to dance with a man on camera just because that is what is expected or “commercially accepted.” I want the queer community to know that in my music, they can find representation. There is something really special about hearing a song and seeing it performed, and feeling identified with the queer community.
What do you hope to achieve as an artist?
I would love to look back in a few years and see how I’ve performed loads of gigs, had great experiences, and met some amazing people along the way. I dream about my music being heard internationally, and I would love to perform on the main stage at international pride events.
Who are your top three major influences?
Juan Luis Guerra, Carmen Boza, and Vicente García.
How can we all support your work and talent?
By following me on social media, listening to my music, and sharing with it your friends. That way, I can share in this adventure with you, and always be open to meeting new faces, which is something really exciting to me.