The Magic of a 24k Golden Child By Thaddeus Tukes

I was first introduced to singer Bruno Mars in 2010 with his break-out hit, “Just The Way You Are.” A pop song through-and-through, I wasn’t particularly moved by the single, but I could tell the artist had real talent. His allusion to 50s Doo-Wop combined with mainstream pop instrumentation and an incredibly soulful voice created a dynamic that I had never heard.

His next album, Unorthodox Jukebox, seemed to be more of the same. While he had songs like, “Treasure,” which had very apparent soul influences, the album has a whole was a pop project.By that point, I figured he had settled into the industry mold for male pop artists. He was definitely a great performer, with clear references to James Brown and Michael Jackson in his dance moves, but the music just didn’t match his image, in my opinion.

Then in 2015, he and producer Mark Ronson collaborated on “Uptown Funk,” and I knew things would never be the same.

Born Peter Gene Hernandez, Mars was born in Honolulu to a musical family, and started playing music around his hometown at a young age. He signed to a deal with Motown, but left soon thereafter and ended up at Atlantic Records. During the off time, he became a much sought-after songwriter in the industry, producing hits for B.O.B. and Travie McCoy.

"With back-up dancers and full choreography, he held his own and propelled himself into international limelight."

After signing to his label, he released three hit singles and won a Grammy for his collaboration with B.O.B. He then performed at Super Bowl 50 alongside Beyonce, right after the release of “Uptown Funk,” in front of an audience of millions. With back-up dancers and full choreography, he held his own and propelled himself into international limelight. It also seems to have opened up his creative opportunities.

On his latest release, Bruno Mars goes full R&B, mashing boy-band harmonies and prominent electric bass lines into a dynamic, well-rounded musical project. It sounds nothing like the rest of his projects, but his signature voice is still the most attractive component of each song. More importantly, he has found the sound that’s perfect for him. He is able to mix rap-like lyric construction with doo-wop melodies. He can explore raunchy content, even curse, but it still sounds classic and authentic. Bruno Mars has arrived.

Made with Adobe Slate

Make your words and images move.

Get Slate

Report Abuse

If you feel that this video content violates the Adobe Terms of Use, you may report this content by filling out this quick form.

To report a Copyright Violation, please follow Section 17 in the Terms of Use.