Maria Masle is the Salsa Queen of Slovenia. She talks about her passion, projects, her personal fashion style and new releases. Interview: Dennis Rowehl / Pics by courtesy of Agency Ekskluzivno.
entertaim.net: Hi Maria. How are you? What is your everyday like?
Maria: I’m fine, thank you. Well, now that I have graduated with honours in International Business Economy at the Maribor Faculty of Economics and Business, life is much more relaxed. Believe me (laughing) Sports, traveling and so on, actually some concerts are scheduled.I’m looking forwat to it.
entertaim.net: When did you first get involved in music and dancing?
Maria: I have been dancing since I was seven, I had competed in Ballroom and Latin American dances for seven years. Music has been my greatest love since I was a child. As a little girl I performed at various family events and when I was 15 I devoted myself completely to singing and music.
entertaim.net: Latin music is said to be your first love. What about your second love? Or third …
Maria: (laughing) My first love is music, for sure. I really do love to sing. My second love is shopping! I love browsing the shops in search of items that I like. My third love is a good massage (laughing).
entertaim.net: Your songs have also been released in Spanish. Are you the only Slovenian performer singing in this language? Why Spanish? Because of Salsa?
Maria: I have always been passionate about Latin music. I remember the holidays in the Dominican Republic, Cuba, Spain … where I was truly fascinated by the Latin rhythms and the temperament of the people there. We used to bring home a bunch of CDs with Latin music from every place we went to. I was also lucky to be given Spanish language lessons for several years by a good friend of my family – Patricia Koren, who was born in Venezuela. In fact, the common thread to my career as a singer is that I record every song that I make also in Spanish, thus giving it a Latin sound.
entertaim.net: When can we expect an album?
Maria: The album is in preparation. It should already have been released, but there had been other commitments and a continuous lack of time. The album will be a mix of different rhythms. The common thread – as already said – is that it is going to be bilingual. This will certainly be one of the best moments of my life and a perfect ID for the world of music.
entertaim.net: How many songs have you produced yourself?
Maria: So far I have eight copyright songs. The first was Ritem vabi me (The Rhythm Invites Me), followed by Soj teme (The Gleam of Darkness), which both scored very well in Slovenia and in the Balkans. The song was nominated for the Balkanika TV Music Award in 2011, and a remix was made in Spanish entitled Parte de tu piel (Part of Your Skin). The third one was a summer song Havana. Nadie mas que tu (Nobody But You) and Todo es especial (All is Special) were recorded in Spain in the studio of the renowned Spanish producer Noel Pastor which was nominated three times for the Latin Grammy. I am very proud of these two pieces. For my next song I collaborated with wonderful authors from Sarajevo Maya Sar and Mahir Sarihodžič who wrote a romantic ballad entitled Samo gledaj (Just Look) or Solo sufre in Spanish. The song was quite a hit in Croatia, Serbia and Bosnia. The latest one is El beso, produced with Sven Gleđa from Croatia.
entertaim.net: Which musicians have you been collaborating with?
Maria: I have collaborated with several top musicians, among which Ricardo Luque, Davor Radolfi, Goran Bregović, Jaquelin Castellanos (Buena Vista Social Club) … We are also preparing an international collaboration which I want to keep a secret for the time being.
entertaim.net: How much time do you spend on your appearance? I read you have your own fashion designers?
Maria: I devote an important part of my time to how I look since my songs represent me and I think it is fair that I am dressed up, whereby I also show respect for my audience. Be it on stage or in private life, I entrust my looks to Urša Drofenik (www.ursadrofenik.com). I always wear fashion and unique jewellery from E2RD Gallery, created by Bojana Kovačič Zemljič, as well as lace bijoux Gama made by the young and promising Gabrijela Neuvirt.
entertaim.net: How do you relax and recharge your batteries?
Maria: Every day of my life is diverse and dynamic. I mostly relax doing sports where I can forget about every little or big problem (laughing), I mean obligations which are rather significant. And, I admit, I relax at shopping , and really, really like to travel.
entertaim.net: Any plans for the future?
Maria: Sure! This year I’m taking up Master’s studies which I intend to finish in due time, after which I will focus exclusively on my career as a singer. I was invited to Cuba to record a CD with some of the best Cuban musicians. We are planning a tour in the region (Balkans and abroad) to present my new album and give concerts in every state. My publishing house is Aquarius Records from Zagreb and together with the organizers Kaly Kolonič and Tanja Vrbnjak (Agency Ekskluzivno) we are planning a concert tour.
entertaim.net: Maria, thanks for the interview.
Maria: Thank you, Dennis.