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Haley Reinhart Album #4....
07-18-2018, 11:01 AM
Post: #21
RE: Haley Reinhart Album #4....
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Quote:Spencer Ludwig @SpencerLudwig 11m11 minutes ago

so much fun writing with @lestermendez and @HaleyReinhart
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07-18-2018, 12:47 PM
Post: #22
RE: Haley Reinhart Album #4....
Both Haley and Spencer were born in 1990. Lester's been around awhile.

Quote:In Miami, a new generation of independent Latin music producers competes with the town's former kingpin, Emilio Estefan Jr.

The Lester Mendez sound

Crafting a contemporary sound is the specialty of Lester Mendez. But public relations is not. You won't find a Lester Mendez Web page. Rarely will you even read a Lester Mendez interview.

The slightly built, baby-faced musician shrinks from the limelight. During a recent interview, he kept folding and unfolding his arms, clearly unaccustomed to being the focus of attention.

His facilities are funky, not fancy, located in a hidden Coconut Grove cottage on a quiet street with no sidewalks. There's a kind of carefree, hippie atmosphere, here, with overgrown vegetation and fading paint. It's a world away from the flash of South Beach.

"It's not about glitz," says the soft-spoken Mendez. "It's more about vibe."

His is a cool, laid-back vibe that instantly resonated with Shakira. The first time they met, in the mid-'90s, he says the Colombian singer kicked off her shoes and started talking about the British bands she loved back in Barranquilla -- Blur, Depeche Mode, the Cure.

Mendez, born in Cuba and raised in Miami, had grown up with the same groups. "Yeah, it was cool," he recalls of the meeting. "She'd remember the bass line from [Blur's] 'Girls and Boys' and I'd say, 'Yeah, I love that!' And I'd bring out the CD, and we'd listen to it."

That connection, facilitated by Estefan, turned out to be a gold mine. Before the pair parted that day, they had written their first song -- "Octavo Dia" (Eighth Day), a defiant social protest included on Shakira's multi-platinum 1998 album, "theseDonde Estan Los Ladrones?," which Mendez co-produced.

That album established Shakira as a star in Latin America and launched Mendez's career too. Until then, the creative keyboardist had been a moderately successful Miami studio musician, touring with Spanish crooner Julio Iglesias and recording with rock guitarist Jimmy Page. Today, he's being courted by renowned record executive Clive Davis, who asked Mendez to collaborate on Carlos Santana's recent "Shaman" album as producer and arranger.

The mop-topped producer has also worked with heartthrob Enrique Iglesias. Most recently, he's been working on songs with pop singer Jewel, putting a Mendez groove under Jewel's storytelling English lyrics.

Unlike his colleagues, Mendez did not come up through the ranks in Miami's tightknit music industry.

"I always felt I had to find my niche, do stuff that's true to me, the kind of music I like," says Mendez, who's now experimenting with new twists to old Afro-Cuban jazz. "I always felt that's how it was going to happen for me -- finding my own path."

In a sign of where the industry is headed, he went his own way.
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07-18-2018, 02:25 PM
Post: #23
RE: Haley Reinhart Album #4....
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