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Joey Montana "Flow With Class" "I am a pop-urban artist with a romantic essence" Joey Montana is viewed by the music world as a worthy ambassador of the reggaeton movement in Panama--a land known for being a leader in Latin urban music. Montana's relationship with music was as "the result of destiny." Edgardo Antonio Miranda Beiro (real name) hails from the province of Chiriqui, a gulf that lies to the west on the Caribbean coast of the Central American country.
Thinking back, Montana notes that in 1993, he was a devoted fan of the Puerto Rican rapper, Vico C. Montana recalls collecting the artist's cassettes so he could learn and perform the lyrics at school with friends as a hobby. One day, Montana realized that through the power of music, he could express his many emotions and began to imagine himself as an artist who could make a difference with his music as artists he admired have done in the past. Feeling a sense of impatience, he stayed focused in his career. The result was reaching the recording studio faster than he could have imagined.
"One afternoon as I passed through a station, I noticed that they had an open audition for a new musical project. I signed up and was selected from a large group of seasoned artists for a group who would later become known as La Factoria (The Factory)---one of the groups to break out in a major way throughout Latin America," he explains. The first release from this project had great impact in many Latin markets; however, only the best among the vocalists were invited to participate in a tour in 2000 with the first date starting with Colombia. Among those lucky enough to participate was "MC Joey," as Montana was known at that time. "I received the invitation and I accepted immediately. It was a surprise. But what we did in Colombia was almost a phenomenon. There were 36 concerts and a string of hits on the radio. Every single turned out to be a hit," says Montana. As a result of the many positive experiences from the tour, the group embarked on a major promotion tour with visits in countries like Mexico, the United States and Ecuador.
Other highlights include participating in major events such as "Premios Oye," and sharing the stage as the opening act for A-List artists, including Paulina Rubio and Alejandro Fernandez. By 2004, Montana felt it was necessary to make a change and decided to leave the group to begin a solo career. "The Factory was my school, and I appreciate the opportunity the producers of the project gave me because this lead to me discovering my talents and my true aspirations as a musician," says singer / songwriter emphatically.
A New Beginning: "From Scratch" After a concert in Houston, Texas, Montana was fortunate enough to make the right contacts to take a new career path, but now as a soloist. Once settled in the lone star state, Montana quickly began recording his first album. "I did the first few songs which were released over the internet. They did very well so well that I traveled to Puerto Rico and Aruba to satisfy fan," says Montana. He recorded duets with Angel Lopez, the former lead singer of Son By 4. The tracks were called "No lo vuelvo a hacer" ("I Will Never Do It Again") and "Que Dios te castigue" ("May God Punish You"). "He impacted my career greatly because I always admired him. Working together was a goal achieved--besides the two songs became hits in Colombia," he says of Lopez.
A whole year and a half went by as Montana was seeking to publish his music and get signed by a label. All the while, Montana did not waste a single second of his time. "I captured a lot of the American urban essence and rhythms while living in the United States. This experience influenced me greatly in developing my style, especially my writing, which became more sincere than ever before." Montana acknowledges the influence of the top hip-hop and R&B artists in his music. Among those artists crucial in the development of Montana's style include Usher, R Kelly and T-Pain.
In 2007, Montana realized he had to return to his native Panama to start "from scratch" and to proceed with a project he visualized in his mind. In this new phase of his developing career, he met his compatriot Victor Delgado, aka "Predikador", a music producer who became instrumental in Montana's career. "We started to work and share our ideas for joint projects," he says of Delgado, who would define the sound of their music. Both conceived a plan of attack and nothing was left to chance. They thought carefully about how to make a name for themselves in the urban world without assuming poses or trends. The idea, he stressed, was to find a way to impact audiences in a genuine way. "In the end I decided to let my personality flow, I refused to wear "bling bling" and follow popular trends," says Montana.
After aligning himself with Montana, Predikador, continued to grow as a producer and landed collaborations with major artists like Luny Tunes, Zion y Lennox and Daddy Yankee. "Flow With Class"---The Album Armed with ten years of experience, Montana is gearing up for the release of his second solo album entitled, "Flow With Class." "With this title, I try not to lose the urban sensibility I came to embrace. But I have other tracks that are not as heavy. This mix is why I feel I can keep fans of various ages, children and adults. I always keep it classy, especially in my lyrics," describes Montana. "I try to always give my fans something more sophisticated, without denigrating women, or running counter to cultural values, without losing, as we say in Panama, 'the urban flow'."
This album has a youthful feel, but it also touches on real issues. Fans can look forward to great romantic themes and dance songs. "I would describe the album as a full plate of organic sounds that are a reflection of the musicians I was with at the time of recording," he points out. The first single, "Tus ojos no me ven," ("Your Eyes Don't See Me") has been added to playlists at radio stations throughout the U.S., South America and Central American gaining heavy rotation. In order to realize the dream of the new album, Montana signed to Capitol / EMI, a record company fiercely committed to the development of the romantic singer / songwriter's talent. Montana is proud to be part of Capitol/EMI, who is also recognized for its legacy of hits and being the home of world class artists, including Belinda, fellow countryman Flex, Aleks Syntek and Anahi among many others.
"With the support of my label, I know the doors are open, which will undoubtedly help me to achieve my dream of becoming a global artist. I hope to become an artist of international stature and I'm sure I will achieve it," he says with confidence. "I want, as short-term goals, to gain many fans, for people to see me as a real and unique person, someone who comes from the heart and not just speaks in order to be heard...I want for audiences to discover what I'm really all about---a pop-urban artist with a romantic essence" "Flow With Class" will be available on CD / Mobile /Digital downloads on September 28, 2010.
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