We Just Found Your New Favorite Singer
Written By: Rebecca Grazier
Photographed By: Travis McCoy Singer Mario Jose
Up-and-coming singer Mario Jose’s talent is undeniable. After growing up in San Francisco, the Bay Area native went on to study music at Berklee College of Music in Boston, MA.
“Studying music was very important to me because I wanted to leave a musician, and in the music world, there’s such a stigma of instrumentalists being musicians, that singers can’t be musicians or that they’re not titled musicians. That was one of the biggest things I’ve fought for and wanted to do in college,” said Jose.
Growing up in a home with two musicians, his mother a singer and his father a trombone player, music has always driven Jose. The first recording his parents have of him singing was when he was a little over two years old, singing Disney songs with his dictaphone.
“It was so funny because my mom came in the room, and then she’s like, ‘Sing for mommy,’ and I was like, ‘No,’” said Jose. “Then I even stopped because I am definitely a learn-by-example guy, even to this day, so I remember listening to my mom sing and then I’d try to emulate her.”
After graduating from Berklee, Jose moved to Los Angeles and was featured on several national TV shows including NBC’s “The Sing-Off,” ABC’s “Duets” with John Legend and “American Idol.”
In July 2016, Jose created a Kickstarter campaign to raise funds for his first EP, and was able to raise over $35,000 with the help of 473 backers, including his friend, Meghan Trainor, who made a video on YouTube asking fans to help support his goal.
Jose’s first EP was titled Heart of Gold, and it was then that he really dove into songwriting. It all started with the co-writer of “Tell Me Now,” a single from his EP.
“JP Saxe came to one of my shows where I did all covers. He said, ‘You sound great, I absolutely love you, but I don’t know who you are. You can tell a story, but it’s not your story. I wanna know your story,’” said Jose.
So they got into the studio and wrote Jose’s single “Tell Me Now,” which is about unrequited love.
“He sat down at the piano and was kind of playing some chords, and he’s like, ‘What are you going through?’ And at the time, I’d fallen for someone that didn’t love me back in that way, and I was confused. So this whole song was talking about unrequited love and wanting to know where they’re at, and you think you’re on the same page, and they’re not,” said Jose.
In the summer of 2017, Jose toured with singer-songwriter Travis Atreo, and the acapella group, The Filharmonic for The Heart, Hope & Love Tour. So, keep an ear out, because this star is undoubtedly on the rise.
First Encounters: The first thing Jose said to Meghan Trainor when he met her at a Rita Ora concert was, “F—you Meghan Trainor!” Trainor responded by saying “F—me? F—you!’’ They’ve been great friends ever since.
Next to Greatness: Jose has shared the stage and studio with icons like Pentatonix, Prince, Justin Bieber and Meghan Trainor.
Locals Know Best: Jose’s favorite places in LA include Aroma Coffee & Tea Company, where he likes to bring his visiting friends and family, and Wurstküche Restaurant Venice.
Endeavor Studios LA
Los Angeles, CA