Bruno Mars (October 8, 1985)
Artistfacts®: You can leave comments about the artist/band at the bottom of the page.
His real name is Peter Gene Hernandez. He was nicknamed "Bruno" by his father at the age of two, because he was a chubby kid and there was a famous chubby wrestler at the time named Bruno Sammartino. At the start of his career he added "Mars" to his stage name because "a lot of girls say I'm out of this world, so I was like I guess I'm from Mars."
His first brush with show business was at the age of 4. He gives more details in an interview with National Public Radio: "Dad started bringing me up onstage every night till finally they worked a little segment out for me. My mom made me an Elvis outfit, and I'd go up there and do my thing." His impersonation of Elvis also won him the role of Little Elvis in the movie Honeymoon In Vegas (1992). As a young boy, he continued to make performances impersonating Elvis Presley and Michael Jackson.
Growing up in Hawaii in a family of musicians marked his music with traces of traditional Hawaii music, reggae, pop, rock, R&B, soul, doo-wop and hip hop.
Before launching a solo career, Bruno Mars was part of a writing and production team called The Smeezingtons, with Phillip Lawrence and Ari Levine. They wrote and produced songs for other artists, including Brandy's "Long Distance
," Flo Rida's "Right Round
," and Cee-Lo Green's "Forget You
." He also sang and co-wrote the hooks for "Nothin' On You
" by B.o.B and "Billionaire
" by Travie McCoy.
He named his debut album Doo-Wops & Hooligans because it has songs that both women and men are going to relate to: doo-wops are for the girls, and hooligans are for the guys. His favorite song on the album is "Grenade
Bruno is just 5 feet 5 inches tall. His relatively low stature was noticeable when he received a VMA from Taylor Swift
, who at just under 6 feet, appeared to tower over him.
Mike Love of The Beach Boys
The lead singer/lyricist of The Beach Boys talks about coming up with the words for "Good Vibrations," "Fun, Fun, Fun," "Kokomo" and other classic songs.
Jon Foreman of Switchfoot
Switchfoot's frontman and main songwriter on what inspires the songs and how he got the freedom to say exactly
what he means.
Gary Louris of The Jayhawks
The Jayhawks' song "Big Star" has special meaning to Gary, who explains how longevity and inspiration have trumped adulation.
Kristian Bush of Sugarland
Kristian talks songwriting technique, like how the chorus should redefine the story, and how to write a song backwards.