Unless you’ve been hidden under a rock for the last five years, you’ll recognise the face of Anthony Ramos from the original run of Hamilton (playing both roles of Alexander Hamilton’s son Philip as well as statesman John Laurens, NBD), or more recently as Lady Gaga’s BFF Ramon in A Star Is Born. And let’s not forget buzzy acting credits in Spike Lee’s She’s Gotta Have It and Monsters and Men. We stan so hard.
The award-winning actor added yet another notch to his already overloaded belt back in 2017 with a solo EP titled “The Freedom.” And now, news has dropped that on October 25, Ramos will release his full-length debut album, The Good & The Bad, following with a tour in the fall.
We caught up with Ramos, who has released his first single from the record below, “Mind Over Matter”…
Listen to “Mind Over Matter” below…
Hi Anthony, how are you?
I’m great. Life is good. Planning a wedding, promoting an album full of songs that tell the most authentic story about my life, spending time with my loved ones, and doing it all at home. It’s a whole vibe.
You’ve had a very busy year, have you had time to catch your breath?
I actually have been actively being better about catching my breath. I’ve always had the habit of trying to get in contact with people or do something if I saw any space in my day. I guess it was because I felt like if I was free, I wasn’t being productive. Very different mindset these days. I’ll come home sometimes and not let anyone know I’m back. Not because I don’t want to see people, but because I know I’m not disciplined enough yet to not want to see everyone and do everything! Boundaries on myself are a big thing I’m working on.
You’ve got an amazing acting career with credits including A Star Is Born, She’s Gotta Have It, Monsters and Men and more – when did you first realise you wanted to pursue music?
I realised I wanted to pursue music after I did Hamilton on Broadway. I was on stage singing about revolution every night and a guy who wrote his way out of his circumstance and into history, retold by a Latinx writer from Washington Heights New York. I eventually asked myself after more than five hundred shows of this: “Well, what are you writing?”. Meeting my executive producer and best friend Will Wells (who was on the music team for Hamilton at the time) definitely changed the game. He walked up to me after opening night off-Broadway and said: “Everyone on that stage is talented, but you?.. You’re special.. You ever made a record?”. I replied “No”. He said, “Have you ever wanted to do that?” I said “Yeah”. He said “Let’s talk”. Three years later we have a debut album to give to the world.
Who did you grow up listening to?
50 Cent, Eminem, Daddy Yankee, Wisin Y Yandel, John Mayer, John Legend, Usher, The Temptations, Owl City, Marc Anthony, Bon Iver. Just to name a few.
How does your Puerto Rican heritage and Bushwick childhood affect the kind of music/influences you have?
My neighbourhood was predominantly African American and Latino, so the spectrum of music I listened to was broad. I love Motown, Funk, Gospel, Hip-Hop, R&B, Salsa, Reggaeton, Merengue, and Reggae. These styles of music were just some that made up the heartbeat of my community. I got into Pop music just from listening to the radio. Pop music wasn’t popular in our house. There was a lot of Tito Rojas and Victor Manuel. My brother was playing Jay-Z and 50 Cent. I grew up in church, so Gospel was a huge part of my musical influence and still is.