Convo With Mari Vee
In the dynamic landscape of contemporary R&B, a fresh breeze of talent has emerged, and her name is Mariana Velletto, aka Mari Vee. At the youthful age of 23, Mari Vee's music is a fusion of her diverse Jamaican and Italian background, seamlessly blending the best of Pop and R&B. Her latest single, "Better" featuring Hip Hop sensation Benny The Butcher, is a testament to her unique style and musical prowess.
Mariana's love for the Y2K era is palpable in her music and style. In her journey from captivating renditions of R&B hits to collaborating with legendary producers like Jazze Pha, 1500 or Nothin, and rising star Cash Cobain, Mari Vee has carved her niche in the industry.
Released on October 27, 2023, "Better" is a standout single that showcases Mari Vee's ability to put her own spin on classics. Sampling Mary J. Blige's "I Can Love You," Mari enlisted the talents of producer Cash Cobain to create a rendition that pays homage to the original while infusing her own "sauce" into it. Benny The Butcher's smooth rap flow adds a layer of sophistication, reminiscent of Lil Kim's iconic touch on the 1997 classic.
In a recent interview with us, Mari Vee expressed her approach to the track, stating, "My manager at the time had a business relationship with Benny the Butcher, and he happened to pull up to my studio session in which I was already working on the song. I knew he was coming, so I wanted to have something ready that I thought he could vibe to, and he did just that!" This unique blend of familiarity and modernity is what sets Mari Vee apart, making "Better" a must-listen for R&B enthusiasts.
Accompanying the release is a visually stunning music video where Mari Vee uses fashion and music to channel the allure of New York City. With her NY-fitted hat and a confident stride, Mari navigates the streets, joined by Benny The Butcher, who delivers his verse with his distinctive gruff tone. The video not only complements the song but also adds a layer of storytelling that enhances the overall experience.
Mari Vee's journey doesn't stop with "Better." Her previous single, "Too Deep," produced by the iconic Jazze Pha, provides a nostalgic vibe reminiscent of the golden age of R&B in the early 2000s. With influences from Mary J. Blige, Aaliyah, and Destiny’s Child, Mari Vee infuses her music with witty lyrics and timeless melodies.
As she asserts herself as R&B's newest "It Girl," Mari Vee's trajectory in the industry is set for greatness. With plans to release a string of singles and tease a more significant project, this upstate New Yorker is poised to leave an indelible mark on the world of contemporary R&B.
Mariana Velletto, aka Mari Vee, is more than just a singer-songwriter; she is a force to be reckoned with in the world of R&B. "Better" ft Benny The Butcher is a glimpse into her artistic brilliance, showcasing her ability to blend the old with the new seamlessly. As we await her upcoming projects, one thing is certain—Mari Vee is here to stay, and her musical journey is one worth following.
Check out the full interview below.
1-Your music is a fusion of Pop and R&B with influences from artists like Mary J. Blige, Aaliyah, and Destiny's Child. Can you tell us more about how these artists have influenced your sound and style?
I am inspired by most of the R&B greats, and I've learned different things from each artist. From their Melodies, soulfulness, and articulation, I've learned to add pieces of them all into my own sound.
2-Your latest single, "Better," features a collaboration with Benny The Butcher. How did this collaboration come about, and what was the creative process like when working with him on this track?
My manager at the time had a business relationship with Benny the Butcher, and he happened to pull up to my studio session in which I was already working on the song. I knew he was coming, so I wanted to have something ready that I thought he could vibe to, and he did just that!
3-You mentioned that sampling has become a significant trend among Gen Z artists. Can you share your perspective on the use of sampling in music and how you approached creating a rendition of Mary J. Blige's "I Can Love You"?
I think that sampling in music allows Artists to create great music while keeping a familiar sound to the audience within the song. It's almost a jump start as long as you bring your own flavor and add to the record rather than take away from it. For my new single, I decided to approach one of my favorite songs to this day, "I Can Love You," by Mary J Blige while keeping the same concept but adding my own twist.
4-The music video for "Better" showcases a distinct New York vibe. How important is your background and location in influencing your music and visual style?
I'm an East Coast girl so that definitely influences my music. You can hear it in my lyrics, attitude, and Melodie's. I also grew up being inspired by many New York artists, so it plays a big role in my artistry.
5-You've worked with renowned producers like Jazze Pha, 1500 or Nothin, and Cash Cobain. What have you learned from these collaborations, and how have they shaped your approach to creating music?
Collaborating with such amazing producers has given me more solid knowledge. When I worked with them, we did each record from scratch, which allowed me to learn more about the sounds I vibe with.
6-Your music is often described as having a Y2K era influence. What draws you to that particular time in music, and how do you blend that nostalgia with a modern-day sound in your work?
I love almost everything about that era, but mostly, the feel it gives me influences me the most. I like to include some of the elements used during the Y2K era in my music while modernizing it through my melodies and lyrics.
7-In the interview, you mentioned that you plan to release a string of singles and tease a more significant project. Can you provide any insights or hints about what fans can expect from your upcoming work?
Fans can expect moody, fun, bratty music!! I like to think that my music is very relatable, so people can also expect to feel like I wrote some of my music just for them!
8-Your mash-up covers on YouTube have garnered millions of views. How has your online presence and the feedback from your online audience influenced your career as an artist?
I feel like there is so much competition online, making me want to go 10x harder every day. Reading the feedback from fans often gives me a confidence boost and motivates me to keep going.
9-Can you share your thoughts on the current state of R&B music and how you see your role in shaping the genre's future as the "It Girl" of R&B?
I think there are so many talented R&B Artists, but I do feel as if something is missing … I'm working hard to show that it's me!
10-You mentioned that your music is known for its witty lyrics and timeless melodies. Can you talk about your songwriting process and how you infuse your personality and experiences into your music?
I do use personal experiences, but I haven't experienced everything! So, I like to take inspiration by paying attention to others and putting myself into their perspective. I like to write about real-life feelings and emotions that people go through. If I'm feeling like I need direct inspiration, I often go on YouTube, type in the vibe I'm feeling and look for beats. Normally the beats have an interesting title so I end up basing the whole song off of the name of the beat.
See u next time!