After singing for the vice president of Colombia alongside 115 philharmonic musicians this past summer and performing with Mexican rock band Maná for 20,000 people, NC State seniors Daniela Patiño and Alan “CHICO” Marines have released their long-awaited debut single, “Miel”—a Spanglish bolero that dropped in April.
“Miel” is about enduring and overcoming hard times or situations to become a stronger person. CHICO originally wrote the song in 2019, but after recording a demo by himself he decided to add a female voice to the song. That’s when he reached out to Patiño, a fellow member of the choir at his church.
“When I heard the song for the first time I thought it was very beautiful and true to our Latinx roots, and didn’t hesitate to hop on it,” Patiño said. “I wrote the second verse in Spanish because I felt like our bolero song—which is a very traditional Latin American music genre—couldn’t be complete without that culturally-rich magic that lyrics in Spanish bring to any song. Although he had already ‘performed’ at church multiple times before, this was our first time recording together, and we had a lot of fun getting to know each other and also learning from each other’s backgrounds and musical knowledges.”
Both CHICO and Patiño have been involved with the Juntos program at NC State. CHICO has been involved with Mi Familia for the past year, and even had the opportunity to perform at their annual event, SOMOS.
Patiño has participated in many Juntos events as well, where she has showcased both her singing and dancing talents. She has been dancing for almost 15 years and has taught salsa and bachata classes at Juntos summer camps. She also served as president of the Association of Latino Professionals for America for two years and currently serves as the Poole College of Management representative for the Student Media Board of Directors.
“Those experiences have impacted both my education and music careers because they have taught me how to efficiently multitask, to proudly carry and honor my Latinx roots, and to be open to absorbing new ideas when working in teams,” Patiño said. My Latinx heritage is a big part of my ‘print’ as a creator; it informs the way I express my ideas, my predilection for singing in Spanish, and the passion that I have for dance and music.”
The release of “Miel” is just the beginning for CHICO and Patiño. CHICO is already working on more singles based on Latin genres like cumbia and bachata, and is also working on an EP that revolves around indie pop rock.
Patiño is writing and producing a conceptual, experimental album focused on the intersection between iconoclastic spirituality and Latin fusion rhythms. The idea comes from navigating her Catholic religion from a creative perspective and infusing it with the knowledge her dance background has given her in terms of musicality and movement. She is also working on some singles that are inspired by Chachachá and cumbia rhythms.
Stream ‘MIEL’ here and watch the lyric video below on YouTube:
Read More About Daniela and CHICO
Daniela Patiño is a 22-year-old multifaceted artist based in Raleigh, North Carolina. A lifelong dancer, she was born and raised Colombian between Bogotá and Medellín under the musical likes of her father and grandfather, both musicians, as well as an entire family given to Colombia’s gifts of Salsa and Cumbia. In her upbringing, Daniela was influenced by known Afro-Latin legends such as Joe Arroyo and Celia Cruz, whose rhythms and songs inform her art as a dancer, singer, performer and choreography instructor who moved to the States at 17 years old. From the Mexican Bolero to the Nuyorican Boogaloo, Daniela’s artistic range is the epitome of the word ‘diverse.’ She boasts delivering a rigorous Salsa performance at a TEDx event and patriotically singing a Cumbia anthem to Colombian Vice President Marta Lucía Ramirez alongside 115 philharmonic musicians on a national stage to nearly 1,000 spectators. Her songwriting influences stem from the mythic Fania Records all-stars like Willie Colón and Rubén Blades and the intricate romantic musicianship of Trio Los Panchos.
Alan “CHICO” Marines is a 22-year-old musician and singer based in Raleigh, North Carolina. CHICO’s Mexican descendance opened his eyes to various Latin artists such as bolero legends, Los Panchos, and cumbia innovators, Los Angeles Azules. The combinations of rhythm and melody from his Mexican roots is something that has influenced his music. Alongside his Mexican roots, the Mexican American artist started playing drums, bass, guitar, and piano after listening to the blues legends that his dad listened to such as Stevie Ray Vaughn and B.B. King. Recently, CHICO has fallen in love with the rise of Indie rock/pop music in the US, as well as Mexico. By combining cumbia rhythms, blues rock musicianship, passionate bolero songwriting, with an indie flair, CHICO is able to create music that can be enjoyed by people of both backgrounds. CHICO is known for his covers on his YouTube channel, which is nearing 50,000 views, and his performance alongside Spanish rock band Maná in front of 20,000 people at a sold-out Greensboro coliseum.