Alvester Martin Steps Into the Limelight with Upcoming Debut Album
Having toured and performed with some of music’s biggest stars, including Beyonce, Mariah Carey, Rihanna, Jennifer Lopez and Queen Latifah, former background dancer Alvester Martin is finally stepping into his own as an artist. Alvester recently signed with Universal Music Group as a solo recording artist, and released his debut single, “So High”. His debut album entitled Love Me or Leave Me is slated for release very soon and will be exclusively distributed through Emagine/Universal Music Group. Following his final performance with Beyonce during her 15-minute set at this year’s MTV Video Music Awards, Heed had the chance to catch up with Alvester! Check it out!
Mike Sanford: How are you Alvester?
Alvester Martin: I’m good man, how are you today?
MS: You know what, I can’t complain! Thank you for giving us this time. I had the chance to check out your single, and your work in Michael Jackson’s latest video. Congratulations on everything you’re doing.
AM: Thank you man, I really appreciate that.
MS: So, you’ve been dancing for a very long time and I want to ask you, what does ‘dance’ mean for you?
AM: That’s a good question Mike. Dance for me is being able to express yourself through movement. It’s an expression through movement, because sometimes we can’t put things into words and that’s why dance is important for me. Just like music and everything else, dance is a feel.
MS: When did you discover that dance was one of your passions?
AM: I can tell you exactly when I discovered it! When I saw Michael Jackson’s ‘Billie Jean’ video. I was a little kid looking at the TV and I said, “I want to do that!”
MS: A lot of artists have had their ‘Michael Jackson’ moment and it kind of solidified what they wanted to do in life. That’s pretty cool and to actually come full circle and be in his latest music video must be pretty wild.
AM: It was crazy! For me it was that little kid standing in his grandmother’s kitchen looking at the TV. It was my dream actually coming true. It’s as simple as that; it was a little kid’s dream coming true. I can’t even put it into words.
MS: You’ve had a pretty incredible career thus far and you’re bio is very impressive. What has been one of the hardest lessons you’ve learned since stepping into entertainment?
AM: Patience and trusting the process. Your time will come when your time comes. You know, we always want to rush. That’s one of the hardest things I’ve had to learn, but I’m still learning it and I’m happy that I am learning it.
MS: With that, for you has it been challenging transitioning from your career as a well-known background dancer to a new artist performing music?
AM: You know what, yes! I think that’s mostly because I’m my own worst enemy. I thought I had to stop dancing for people to see me as an artist and actually it’s not true. You can’t cut off blessings and if I had stopped dancing like my mind was telling me to do, I wouldn’t have had all of the great experiences. Especially the last one I just had! The challenge was me battling myself. Once I got of my own way, I was good.
MS: Speaking of that last ‘great experience’. I was watching the VMAs, and like everyone else I’m waiting for the last 15 minutes because I already knew what was about to go down. [Laughs] She started off with a song I don’t usually hear her perform and I’m like ‘oh, this is dope!’ and then I see you up there. I know you’ve done work with Beyonce in the past, but at this juncture in her career how was it performing with her as she accepted that major award?
AM: Again, I was speechless. It’s been such a blessing lately man. I’ve been on cloud 9. The energy up there was crazy! We all know Bey is amazing, period, but I was just honored to be up there to share with her getting that award. She’s a big Michael Jackson fan, he’s her inspiration and he’s my inspiration and it just felt otherworldly to be up there at that moment.
MS: How has working with so many legendary talents humbled you?
AM: It humbled me because it let me know that as long as I continue to work hard, people will always see that. So, for me it’s not about the spectacle, it’s about the craft. It makes me continue to work hard, because there are a million people who could be in this spot. I’ve been blessed enough to have a long 10 year career so it humbles me to keep working hard. It’s one thing to get there, but it’s even harder to stay there. So, that’s humility in itself to know that you’re not bigger than ‘it’.
MS: How have those people inspired you?
AM: They inspired me to do what I love! That’s the inspiration right there and to be around those great people that have done so much and have accomplished so much it’s inspiring. They inspire me, but I’m also inspired by the people that are watching me. A lot of people say that I inspire them, but they don’t realize they inspire me as well.
MS: So, now you are in this new phase of your career with your music. Can you tell me a little bit about your sound?
AM: It’s definitely R&B. I grew up on R&B and I listen to a lot of stuff. My management has me listening to country and what I love about country music is the storytelling and people love stories and relate to stories. As far as musical influences and what you will hear? Think John Mayer and Usher! It’s a lot about love and what men go through. I wear my heart on my sleeve so I really get into the psyche of love on this album.
MS: Who are you working with? Any collaborations?
AM: As of right now, I’m working with a couple of dope producers, but as far as with other artists, not yet. I want to feel it out for myself and I want people to hear me. I’ve collaborated with so many artists as a dancer, so I really just want to concentrate on myself.
MS: What are you most excited about in terms of being an artist?
AM: I’m looking forward to telling my story. I’m looking forward to being vocal and telling my story. I talked about dance earlier and how it’s a silent art form, now I can let people hear me instead of just letting them see me.
MS: Who are you listening to?
AM: I’m definitely listening to Sam Smith, Drake. I am listening to Trey Songz new album; shout out to Trey and Jhene Aiko. I’m definitely feeling Jhene right now.
MS: Are you a songwriter as well?
AM: Definitely! That’s important because everything I sing about I’ve lived it. I write it straight from the heart.
MS: Are you 100% focused on being an artist, or will we see you dancing again at some point?
AM: I’m 150% focused on myself as an artist, but I’ve also learned not to close yourself off to possibilities because you never know where they can lead.
MS: When is the project coming out?
AM: It’s slated for the top of next year. We’re still in the early stages so we’ll see.
MS: What advice do you have for those who pursuing a career in entertainment?
AM: My advice would be work on your craft. Be so good to the point where they cannot ignore you. After that, don’t let the perception of you in your head get bigger than where you actually are. Stay humble.
Check out Alvester’s BRAND NEW video for his single “So High”!
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