There are but a handful of young, solo artists who dare to tackle the challenge of performing bachata music at the international level. And there are fewer still who embody the drive and determination of the great old bachata performers, when the genre was consigned to the smaller rural areas of the Dominican Republic.
But “it is much overdue” as Prince Royce explains, we need a new talent whose name symbolizes both performing excellence and Latin pride. Singing in both English and Spanish, it is easy to see this gifted young man quickly becoming one of the genre’s hottest new stars.
Geoffrey Royce Rojas was born and raised in the Bronx, New York, and this city has remained a key influence in developing his unique musical style which not only sets him apart from the rest, but has also added to the growth of his career. His inclination towards bachata is not just a coincidence. His parents who are both from the land of the bachata, the Dominican Republic, always instilled in him a strong sense of cultural identity and pride.
“I feel one hundred percent Dominican,” he reveals with a smile, although his strong Caribbean accent has already given him away.
Though he may be a novice to the music industry, he is no stranger to performing. Captivated by the popular music and dance moves of his childhood, he auditioned and performed in numerous school talent shows from very early on. “I needed to know what it felt like to be any given character in front of a lot of people,” he explains, alluding to his first stage performances in elementary school shows.
In addition to his spontaneity and determination to be an artist, Royce had two important factors in his favor. The first was the unconditional support of his family.
“My mother also dreamed of becoming an artist in her youth, so she was always my biggest supporter when I’d say that I wanted to be an artist. But generally, my entire family has always stood behind me,” he reflects.
The second factor in his favor was being raised in New York City. “I noticed that everything around me was defined by the latest trends and styles, so I started defining my own brand of music, nourished by all the experiences that a city like New York can offer, a place where only those that innovate can truly have an impact and make a difference.
At 13 he discovered a new “hobby” that occupied all of his time and fueled his inspiration, bringing him closer to his ultimate goal. “I began writing poetry and eventually songs, inspired by the personal experiences and issues that affected my generation,” he recalls.
At the age of 15, he begins to narrow in on what he wants to do as a performer and begins “experimenting” with music, working towards becoming a great new artist.
Some time later, Prince Royce would unknowingly discover his artistic destiny, after meeting his future manager Andrés Hidalgo, Producer and President of 2 Strong Entertainment. who suggested that he sing a few bachata songs to judge the quality of his voice.
“It wasn’t a total surprise because I knew that sooner or later I would be performing traditional Dominican music professionally, it just had not occurred to me as my first choice, but I am thrilled that it happened this way.”
Still, he promises that what will set him apart will “not be purely bachata,” but rather more of an urban experience within the tropical genre. “I want to take the bachata to the next level, to break away from the traditional sound that is familiar to everyone”, he emphasizes.
With a fun-loving, energetic personality typical of a Latin youth, topped with ambition and a fervent determination to achieve his objectives, Royce firmly believes in his music and says that he will not let his fans down by offering more of the same thing.
His debut album, titled “Prince Royce”, features mostly bachatas fused with other contemporary rhythms like pop and rhythm and blues, all written by Royce himself.
“I want people to see me as a complete artist that can sing and do whatever it takes to entertain. That is why I say that I am open to all musical genres”, he reveals while adding that this album also includes some softer melodious tunes as well as up tempo ones.
So how did you come up with the title? “I discovered that my name ‘Royce’ means ‘The King’s son’, or someone of royal birth, so naturally I felt that Prince Royce would be in tone with that and be catchy at the same time”.
He was joined in the recording studio by a select team of industry experts that sealed the production with the outmost care and professionalism. “This was an incredible experience for me and I felt very excited to see the entire project come together to perfection with each recording”, says Royce with a look of evident satisfaction.
The album’s first single is “Corazón sin Cara”, a romantic ballad “that relates how true love isn’t about physical beauty; it’s about feelings that come straight from the heart”.
He is part of the music catalogue for the Top Stop Music Label, headed by distinguished music producer Sergio George, who has worked with renowned music superstars like Marc Anthony, Jennifer López, Celia Cruz, India and Christina Aguilera, to name a few. He is also part of the Management company 2 Strong Entertainment the same company that discovered & launched the careers of internationally known Artists Aventura & Xtreme.
“I feel very honored to be able to have the support of these important companies in my career, the feeling of reliability and trust that comes from knowing you have the best team on your side when you are fighting for your dreams is priceless,” he confesses.
“I want to continue doing the things that move me, and to become what I want to be: an artist that is able to touch people’s hearts through my lyrics, so that before I leave this world I am able to make a positive difference in other’s lives”.
Undoubtedly, his creative fusion of styles, melodious voice and charisma, added to steady tenacity make it obvious from the very first note that in no time at all this talented young man will be taking over the tropical music market by storm, earning the international recognition he deserves.