Angela Aguilar: Born to sing

admin July 8, 2019 1
Angela Aguilar: Born to sing


Newsroom/CASA Magazine

Angela Aguilar, the young Mexican American singer, is making strides in her musical career. At just 15 years of age, she has been nominated to the Grammys and she has more than one million followers in Instagram. Angela is the granddaughter of iconic singers and actors Antonio Aguilar and Flor Silvestre, and the daughter of the talented singer and songwriter Pepe Aguilar. Angela inherited the talent of the dynasty, and after we spoke with her, we discovered she has the right personality and mindset to reach success.

Angela Aguilar is the youngest member of the “Aguilar Dynasty”. All artists on her family, including her, are famous throughout Mexico and other parts of the world. The dynasty was founded by the great Antonio Aguilar, better known as “El Charro de Mexico.” Antonio was one of the most celebrated Mexican singers and musicians in history, whose birth took place one hundred years ago. Grandpa Antonio, as an actor and a producer, also played a key role in the Golden Age of Mexican cinema. 

Antonio was married to singer and actress Flor Silvestre. This couple had two sons, Antonio Aguilar Jr. and Pepe Aguilar, both of them also musicians. Pepe has received four Grammys, five Latin Grammys and a star at the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Pepe also has two children: Leonardo and Angela, who are also involved in the world of music. Angela is stepping strong and getting the attention of the media. Her latest hit “La Llorona,” has almost 60 million views in YouTube.

Born to sing

It was 2003 and Pepe Aguilar was in the middle of a tour when the second child of his marriage to Aneliz Álvarez-Alcalá was born. Angela was born in Los Angeles, California, and she holds dual citizenship, she is a Mexican and U.S. citizen. Inevitably, coming from a musical dynasty, at an early age, she and her brother started following their father when he was on tour.

At the age of 9, she recorded her first album “Nueva Tradicion” (2012). This production included five of her songs, and another five of her brother Leonardo. On their debut, she assured the press that she was wanting to sing, compose and record albums “since she was 3 years old”. She had a clear memory of that date: “I sang on my grandpa’s farewell tour,” said Angela in reference to the time when she shared the stage with the legendary “Charro de México”.

Changing the industry

Angela, despite her young age, always knew what she wanted. BBC is a witness to that. When she was 13 years old, a young Angela was the youngest artist to participate in the 2016 BBC 100 Woman in Mexico City. Angela surprised everyone with her voice; the quality of her interpretation and her stage presence. She also caused impact after delivering a feminist discourse at such young age.

“This is an industry of men [music industry], but I have the hope that it will change,” she said at the 2016 BBC festival. She clarified it was not a personal issue. “I haven’t been discriminated for being a woman, but I am aware of what happens, and I want it to change,” she added. Two years later, in 2018, she and her brother Leonardo joined their father at the Jaripeo Sin Fronteras tour. That was also the year when her second album was released, and the first one on her own, under the name “I am Mexican first.”

In this album, produced by Pepe, Angela signs popular ranchera songs. The popular songs were originally interpreted by big figures, including her own grandmother, Flor Silvestre. This album brought Angela a nomination for the Grammy and the Latin Grammy. During that ceremony, her singing caught the attention of Vicente Fernandez, the famous “Charro de Huentitán, a Mexican singer and member of another dynasty of musicians with his son Alejandro Fernández. 

Fernández’s proposal 

Vicente was moved after listening to the granddaughter of his friend Antonio and the daughter of another of his friends, Pepe. He immediately developed a friendship with her. That is how he discovered her love for horses and her sadness for having lost her horse. That brought him to gift one of his horses to Angela. He also proposed that she sings a due with his grandson Alex Fernanez. However, Angela, with a clear head, decided to wait.

“We are both just starging, Alex just released his first album,” said Angela during an interview at the show VEntaneando broadcasted by Azteca Uno in Mexico. “I am now more focused on my own projects,” she said, but she left a door open to the future. “Maybe in the future, when we are both more experienced, we ca do it.” This is a decision that has raised praise as well as criticism. But what matters is that Angela’s social media followers supported her decision.  

An influencer

This star’s success has grown in parallel with the number of followers she has on social media. Angela has more than 1.2 million fans that follow her on Instagram. When you are that famous, there is always envy and ill-intentioned rumors, like those of people who, after seeing the pictures her father would share with her on social media, acused him of exploiting her for work. “My dad didn’t force me to be a signer, this is something I always liked,” said vehemently the singer to People magazine.

The same publication has included her on the list of the 50 most beautiful, something that Angela thanked on Instagram: “It is an honor to be considered.” This young artista continues to grow, taking strong steps on building her musical career. One hundred years after her grandfather Antonio Aguilar was born, the granddaughter is succeeding for her musical talent, her beauty and her level headedness. And to judge by how the public is reacting, this is just the beginning of another star of this Mexican dynasty. 

Angela answered our questions

Angela and her brother, Leonardo Aguilar

What kind of music do you have on your cell phone?

Angela Aguilar: To be honest, I am building a playlist called First Drive. This is the first time I am driving, since I am about to get my permit, haha… On this playlist I have a lot of Charlie Ferg;  Cuco;  Fleetwood Mac; Tame Impala; and The Hollies. I also have Childish Gambino and Lana Del Rey.

What else will you be adding? 

AA: Some Latin themes, I think… Right now I am listening a lot to Ana Bárbara, and some Cristian Nodal; El Bebeto; Adriel Favela; and Ulises Chaidez. I like to support my friends, and these are some of them.

What is your favorite Netflix series?

AA: I used to like “My Block”. Now I like “The Fosters” and “Lucifer”. These three are my favorite. 

In which venue or country would you like to perform?

AA: In News York. I haven’t been there in five years. I would love to go back and sing in that city.

Out of the songs your father sings, which one is your favorite?

AA: I like “Me Vas A Extrañar”, “Me Estoy Acostumbrando a Ti” y “Directo Al Corazón”. Those are songs that hurt your soul when I listen, and they make my heart cry. But I love them.

Advice from Flor Silvestre

Her Grandmother, Flor Silvestre

Angela said that she admires her grandfather Antonio Aguilar, and she talked to us about her relationship with her grandmother Flor Silvestre, who still lives.

What do you remember about your grandfather?

AA: My grandfather died when I was 3 or 4 years old. Since I was very young, I don’t have clear images of him like my siblings do. But I have built an image of him through his movies and interviews that I have watched of him. Now I understand where he came from and how I am similar to him.

Tell us of any advice you have received from your grandmother.

AA: Mt grandmother has given me lots of advice. I believe the most important one was to sing “Paloma Negra.” I listened to her and included that song on my album “Primero soy Mexicana.” My grandmother has also told me to honor my feelings and to sing the songs as if I was telling a story.

As my grandma told me, I embrace the story that I am telling and singing. That is what music is about. Some stories might be happy, some sad, and I understand it and sing it. Every song I sing as if I was living the story.

Mexican heritage 

Angela and all her family keep a strong bond with Zacatecas, state of Mexico where her grandfather Antonio is from. And she expresses love for the land of her parents on her most recent album “Primero soy Mexicana.” But at the same time, she was born in the U.S., and she believes her love for Mexico is not in conflict with the love for the country she was born in.

What do you like the most about being Mexican American? 

AA: What I like the most about being Mexican American is having both cultures. I believe I know where I come from and I have room for growth. Just a couple of days ago I published a post on social media in English and was criticized… I was born in Los Angeles, but I am 100 percent Mexican, I am bilingual, and I am studying French. I will be trilingual, and I know a bit of Mandarin.

What I do is music, and music has no boundaries, music is for everyone. Being Mexican American gives me the hope to reach even more people with my music in the hope they will identify with me a little bit.

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