Amara Le Negra is the Afro-Latina beauty making waves for her large fro, curvaceous shape and spicy sound. While not new to the world of entertainment, America is just getting to know the Miami native, who’s already faced quite her fair share of sexism and colorism. Continue reading as we discuss La Negra’s recent debut on VH1’s Love and Hip Hop Miami, her career and more.
Los Angeles Sentinel: We’ve all seen you break ground on VH1’s “Love & Hip-Hop Miami” as the feisty Afro-Latina superstar. How has this show changed your life and career thus far?
Amara LaNegra: So far just to feel the love and the acceptance of so many people that feel the same way that I do or can relate, just their support of me really means a lot to me, it’s been a beautiful experience. I feel so blessed to have been able to use such an amazing platform to talk about something that really matters not just to me, but also to a lot of people just like myself who have felt that they haven’t had a voice or anyone to really stand up for them.
LAS: How much does it mean to you to raise awareness about the Afro-Latino culture?
AL: It means a lot to me. For many years, I felt that I had no representation. I had no one that looked like me that was Black and also spoke Spanish besides Celia Cruz. She was definitely my idol. Unfortunately when she passed away, I felt like who else do I look up to. So obviously I had to look more into the American markets for the Whitney Houston’s and Donna Summer’s and Tina Turner’s, just beautiful and amazingly talented artists, but I just felt like, why don’t we have one?
LAS: When did you fall in love with music?
AL: I started when I was very young. I started when I was four years old. I started in a very important TV show for the Latin community called Sabado Gigante on Univision; I was there every Saturday for six years. Then I became a dancer for the Latin Grammy’s, Latin awards, anything that had to do with the channel. Around the age of six or seven, I really just wanted to do music. I wanted to perform and sing. I was grateful that I had a mother that was able to see my vision. She supported me by putting me in swimming classes, dancing classes, acing classes, all these amazing things that have built the woman that I am today.
LAS: It appears that within just a short time on the show, you’ve experienced flat out racism. How do you remain gracious and humble despite the negative things said to you or about you?
AL: I guess that once you’ve been backlashed for so long, you kind of learn to not even be angry anymore. Obviously I’m human and I get upset and I feel some type of way, but you just learn not to be angry. At the end of the day, I don’t even want to be mad at the ignorance, I just want to educate people on Afro-Latinos and just express to them that we’re here. We’ve been here for years, it’s just unfortunate that we haven’t had more Afro-Latinos stand up united and really try to make a difference. I did my best to be a lady about it. Eventually you’ll see that maybe I got a little too irritated, but I did my best to compose myself.
LAS: As an artist and businesswoman, how do you ensure that your voice is heard in a male-dominated industry?
AL: I fight for my place. It’s unfortunate that I have to feel that way, but I fight for my place. I’ve been told no so many times, that I’ve become immune to it. You can tell me no as much as you want to, but I’m not hearing it. I’m going to make you accept me. I accept myself first of all, so it’s not that I necessarily need acceptance from other people. I just feel that me standing up and making my voice heard, I’m not just fighting for me, I’m fighting for a whole community of Afro-Latinos; and not even just Afro-Latinos, of Black people; and not even just Black people, of Latinos. It’s more than just a race thing to me. If you can use your knowledge in a positive way and take a positive message, it can open people’s minds to accept you for who you are. If there’re going to judge you, judge you based off your talent or your knowledge and not based off the way that you look. You can succeed being yourself.
LAS: What can viewers and fans expect from you musically?
AL: I’m extremely excited that I just got signed to BMG. I’m thankful to Zach the President of BMG and my manger Julian Boothe, Fast Life Entertainment in general for believing in me for supporting me. There’s definitely going to be new music real soon. I’m in the studio right now every single night, really putting in that hard work. I want this so bad and I want to make sure to give the audience the best music and the best quality I possibly can, so I’m working really hard on that and I’m excited for everyone to hear.
LAS: What are your days like when you’re not working?
AL: I know that this is going to sound really cheesy, but I hang out with my mom all the time. That’s really it. I travel so much, I’m out so much and I’m from hotel to hotel and city to city. America is just getting to know Amara Le Negra now, but I’m known obviously outside of the Caribbean and other parts so I’ve been doing this for years. So once you go from hotel to hotel and when you get home, I like to just be in my PJ’s in my bed with my mom watching TV and just gossiping. That’s just like perfect moment. I’m just in such a happy place to be eating my mom’s food and be a regular girl.