Interview with Mario Vasquez
Television viewers were puzzled when American Idol contestant Mario Vazquez decided to drop out of the show in 2005. Tipped as a potential winner that season, people wondered what motivated the Bronx, NY singer to pass up such an incredible opportunity.
Rumors swirled wildly in the days following his announcement that ranged from unconfirmed stories about a feud with the show's producers to claims that Vazquez was gay and didn't want his sexuality to become a public issue. The real reason, however, had much to do with Vazquez desire to have "artistic freedom" and to be "versatile as an entertainer," as he told Arjanwrites.com in an interview.
And Vazquez got what he wanted. A few months after leaving American Idol, he signed a lucrative recording deal with legendary music mogul Clive Davis. The singer gathered an impressive team of producers and songwriter to work on his self-titled debut album that was released last year.
Read some of the highlights of my interview with Mario below. (Note: I spoke with Mario before the sexual harassment allegations surfaced and The Advocate cover.)
Mario on leaving American Idol: It had a lot to do with artistic reasons. It was the number one priority for me to have artistic control. I realized that creating my own sound was a major thing for me. When I started out with Idol I didn’t think about it that much. But when Idol progressed, there were more lenient opportunities towards things that I wanted to do as an artist. I wanted to be more in tune with what I wanted to sing and perform. The people at charge [at America Idol] would assume or help me create a certain image. But I’m very specific about what I wanted. It was important to me to be versatile as an artist. I think with my debut album I’ve accomplished that.
Mario on the rumours that he is gay: I'm not gay. But I want people to know I'm very tolerant of [gays]. I grew up with gay people. Growing up in New York City and growing up in the world of arts, it is something that’s there and I don’t even have a second thought about it.
Mario on working with Clive Davis: I went to see him in his office the day after Idol was done and I auditioned for him, which was really crazy. That was a real surreal moment (. . .) Clive told me to always practice my songwriting. He’s a stickler for stories in songwriting, and he always told me to keep writing songs and put my passion into it.
Mario on being the potential winner of American Idol: That’s nice when people say that. But my money was on Carrie Underwood! It is hard to say what would have happened if I had stayed with the show. I might not have gotten signed to Clive Davis’ label. I’m proud how things have gone down.
Aww c'mon. Who hasn't gone a little too far outside of the box for a hot latin stud in a public restroom???
The question is, knowing what you leared from the lawsuit and what you gleened from the interview, do you beleive it? Does it make a difference in the music? and; Would Clive Davis be suprised after the length of his career and his accomplishments?
He got Witney to clean her act-up, so how bad is a failed bathroom handjob??????????
Posted by: lexxicuss at Apr 9, 2007 10:26:19 AM
"I'm not gay. But I want people to know I'm very tolerant of [gays]."
I really don't believe him. Either way, he's has an amazing voice and he's hot.
Posted by: Keith at Apr 9, 2007 4:51:14 PM
It is hard to believe the reason he gives for leaving American Idol. "The people at charge [at America Idol] would assume or help me create a certain image. But I’m very specific about what I wanted" he says... Sanjaya is an example of participants creating the image they (not the producers) want. He could have dropped later in the competitor, in the final 3 or 4, after becoming a household name, but he saw that he was going to be eliminated soon. His reason sounds like a talking point written by a PR person.
Posted by: Argdude at Apr 9, 2007 10:21:23 PM
I'm so relieved after reading this interview to know that Mario "tolerates" us gays. I guess he doesn't have to be civil or nice to his people, I mean us gays, but he's such a great guy that he will tolerate us. That is so brave. Bravo Mario for being such a great American.
Posted by: the tolerated at Apr 10, 2007 9:24:10 PM
Mario Vazquez is an hippocrate!
And he still lie about himself and now his career is going to hell! I feel sorry for him 'cause he is a good singer but all the B.S. he tells the media about him is not gonna help him at all!!! I'm wondering if Clive Davis really knew all the dirt behind Mario Vazquez and he hide it hoping it will vanished through the air...Mario is a sad case.
Posted by: Kevin at Apr 11, 2007 12:13:30 AM
IF YOU ARE A BUDDING ARTIST AND SUPPOSE TO BE A LATIN HEARTHROB, HE IS NOT GOING TO ADMIT THAT HE IS GAY.his song may be in the chart but his album sales failed miserably and i don't think he would have another chances to do a 2 album. LET'S FACE IT, clive DAVIS MISDGUDGE HIS POTENTIAL AND WITH THE LAWSUIT I DOUBT ANOTHER LABEL WILL BE RUNNUNG TO SIGN HIM.
Posted by: pat at Apr 11, 2007 10:23:52 AM
stop YELLING. :)
It's all for nought (naught?) - he's not a big success. This recent story is actually keeping Mario in the news.
Posted by: xolondon at Apr 11, 2007 8:29:21 PM
it's funny..my girlfriend who lived in one of the most QUEEREST places in history (D.U.M.B.A queer arts collective in brooklyn..the same place John Cameron Mitchell filmed the sex scenes in his new movie "shortbus") says she remembers he use to be there ALL THE TIME! Now i lived there as well, and if theres one thing i know people didnt just "hang out" there..you either shagged someone who lived there in the past.. or shagging someone in the present..which gave you the "in with the homos" ..Personally i think 'ol boy is under contract to keep his mouth shut.. just like alecia, whitney the list goes on. I'm not saying that people cant change over time their sexual identification/preferences..i'll give hime that, but it seems to me that homo..oops i mean "homey" seems to have made a deal with the devil, and the devil won...
too bad, the closets a lonely place.
Let it go.. who cares there's people dying in Iraq.
Posted by: jjizzo at Apr 13, 2007 3:30:14 PM
I don't think Mario Vazquez is big news.Obviously his cd isn't happening and all the bull about his sexuallity makes it hard for him to became a mainstream name. It is really sad someone can not say who you really are for what ever reasons living in this society. Mario did a great album before American Idol called "worlds of change" with an amazing guitarist/songwriter named Cesar. Now, Mario's music career is slowly dying and no label will pick him up; eventually, Clive Davis will drop him. Clive Davis is a person hard to reach; I know for a fact that Cesar tried to give him his music (w/ Mario on it) for years but Clive's office wouldn't accept it. Simply because Clive dosn't know him in person. Mario lost a great opportunity and now is too late for him to recover.
Posted by: regina at Apr 14, 2007 12:41:53 AM
Who gives a fuck?
Posted by: Mario at May 18, 2007 11:26:42 AM
I do. Because I thought Mario Vazquez was an honest, talented guy and reality is: he's selfish, arrogant and self center and that's the reason he will never be famous, neither respected.
Posted by: regina at May 22, 2007 11:40:28 PM
Posted by: Billy at Jul 2, 2007 1:07:17 AM
People, People, People. We have too much shit going on in the world than to be sticking our noses in Mario's personal life. Whether he's gay or not is non of our business. People need to stop being so damn judgmental. Yes, i agree he is a 100% pure hottie and a record label should be honored to have him. He's totally adorable and for people who haven't heard his album; you really don't know what your missing. I wish Mario great success in life. Maybe one day i could see and meet him but until that day comes i will stand behind him.
Posted by: Matthew at Feb 17, 2008 9:41:40 PM
Weird article. I was told by somebody who met him and hung out with him off and on for a week that's gay, and out of the closet.
Posted by: Ryan Thompson at Jan 29, 2009 12:00:44 AM
MARIO IS SOMEONE WHO IS VERY POPULAR IN AFRICA PEOPLE IN MANY PLACES SEEM TO LOVE HIS MUSIQ
Posted by: EK at Apr 30, 2009 6:52:47 AM