Welcome to The Drop, Refinery29's home for music video premieres. We want to shine the spotlight on women artists whose music inspires, excites, and (literally) moves us. This is where we'll champion their voices.
In her new track “Infatuation,” Angie Rose sings of a distracting crush who could potentially pull her off her selected path. In reality, though, the Bronx-based artist doesn’t seem like she’ll let anything get in the way of what she wants. A Showcase Artist at the 2019 South by Southwest Music Festival, Rose signed with Capitol CMG that September, giving her a bigger platform than ever before. Outside of music, though, Rose knows what it means to make a difference in the world: In 2017, after Hurricane Maria hit her beloved Puerto Rico, Rose got to work. Her nonprofit organization, the Unstoppable Foundation, raised money and supplies for victims of the disaster, and was honored by FEMA for its efforts.
Given her passion for Puerto Rico, it makes sense that Rose took the opportunity to film the music video, premiering here, in her home country. In a phone conversation with Refinery29, Rose discussed bringing the “Infatuation” music video crew to the island, how she incorporates her faith into her work, and what she plans on doing next.
Refinery29: Can you talk about the process of writing and recording “Infatuation”?
Angie Rose: “When we wrote ‘Infatuation,’ we knew we had something. It’s really the story of distraction. In my personal life, one distraction that I had was a boy. The song is literally about realizing that he’s not a bad boy, and that distraction is not necessarily a bad thing, but it’s not for me.”
How did you come up with your creative choices for the video?
“At the beginning of the song, we start off with a beat that’s very typical in Puerto Rico and in Spanish music. So I was like, If I am pulling from the culture in this way, I want to go to my island. That’s what we did. We made it feel like a trip back home.”
You’ve done a lot of philanthropy in Puerto Rico.
“Philanthropy is one of my favorite things to do outside of sitting in a studio and creating. We started when Hurricane Maria touched down on the island. My heart broke for them. I knew the damage was going to be real, because I knew how many of the houses were built. I wanted to help, so I got together with a bunch of community leaders, including church leaders, politicians, and artists, and we put together a relief concert. We haven’t stopped working since. The week we shot the video for ‘Infatuation,’ we finished out that week doing philanthropy to those affected by the [recent] earthquakes.”
What was it like taking your crew to Puerto Rico?
“Well, when you go to Puerto Rico, the first thing you think of is the food, which is really great. Some of the crew had never been to Puerto Rico, so being able to show them the beauty, the history, the castles, and the architecture.”
As a woman coming up in music, what has been your biggest struggle and biggest success?
“My biggest struggle is in line with my greatest success. I’m a girl from the Bronx. I love Jesus. I love really great music. All of that doesn’t fit into a very neat box, but I don’t think that’s a bad thing. I think that’s where most people would struggle but for me, it’s the best thing in the world. As a woman, I can tell the story of a woman that the way no man can, no disrespect to our men. I can tell these stories from my heart.”
Was there one moment for you that made you realize you wanted to be a musician?
“I have very Puerto Rican parents. When I said I wanted to do music, they told me to be a lawyer. Luckily, things worked out the way they have. I’ve always wanted to do music.”
What advice would you give an artist coming up right now?
“Tell your story. Dive deep into your art. Don’t compromise your integrity. If you’re a woman of faith like I am, be that, and don’t worry about making a point.”
Watch the video below:
This interview has been edited and condensed for clarity.