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Singer Claudia Vazquez knocks 'em dead

18 Comments
By Chris Betros

Anyone who was at the Xex nightclub in Tokyo’s Nihonbashi one Saturday night in mid-December would have been knocked over by the powerful performance of Claudia Vazquez as she and a trio of back-up dancers belted out some numbers from the film “Burlesque.” “That was real fun. We’re going to be there again in March,” says Vazquez, a singer and actress who alternates her time between Hawaii and Tokyo.

The road to success for Vazquez started in San Antonio, Texas, where she was born. Her family, who were originally from Mexico, used to have some great house parties, she recalls. “My father was a professional singer. Every weekend, my dad would sing to us and encourage me to perform. Ever since I was five, I have wanted to be a singer.”

Her wish to perform was realized when her father joined the military and the family was transferred to Hawaii. “I got discovered when I was 15 after entering a competition to find the stars of tomorrow,” said Vazquez. “I didn’t win but there was a Swedish producer named Henry Bergstrom, who had worked groups such as Ace of Base, and he put me in a Hawaiian pop group called Sunland.”

As the group started to record, the hits started coming, and before long, Sunland had released albums in both Hawaii and Japan. “I got signed to JVC in 1998 and have been coming to Japan ever since doing radio, TV, MTV, interviews and performances on summer tours. I’ve also sung at places like Tower Records and the Ritz-Carlton.”

To date, Vazquez has recorded five albums. Her style has changed a little, she says. “I am very much a pop singer at heart, but at the moment, I am into dance and house music because there are so many clubs and events in Japan. I love the whole culture of the nightclubs and underground and freeness of that kind of music. Japanese audiences are always great. They really appreciate good music as long as they can see that you really enjoy performing for them and I like to sing hard. If you throw in some ABBA, they’ll get up and dance, or a golden oldie like ‘Can’t Take My Eyes Off of You,’ or ‘Locomotion,’ they’ll love it. The music of that era was so incredible and it still is.”

Vazquez writes the lyrics to her original songs and designs her own costumes as well. “I am getting more into that,” she says. “At clubs, I like to dress funky and crazy. I’m also learning a little bit of Japanese so I can interact with the audience.”

Although her music has kept her busy for the past decade, Vazquez did find time to break into Holly wood, appearing in small roles in two Garry Marshall films in 2004 – “The Princess Diaries 2: Royal Engagement,” alongside Anne Hathaway and Julie Andrews; and in “Raising Helen” with Kate Hudson. “I was performing at a hotel in Hawaii and Garry Marshall was there. He asked me if I can act and asked me to contact him when I went to LA. So next time I was there, I did a test screening and got the job,” Vazquez said, adding that her mother is her biggest fan. “She walks around with my albums in her purse and pictures of me in her bag to show people.”

When she is not working, Vazquez likes to chill out at the gym, hang out at cafes, or when she is in Tokyo, go shopping in Shibuya and Harajuku. “I love the girls’ fashion style here. They are so super cute,” she says. Vazquez also enjoys teaching children how to sing and perform. “Children get so much joy from learning songs and performing...it always makes me smile because I remember that’s how I used to feel when my dad would teach me songs.”

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18 Comments
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She is a very beautiful Mexican lady.

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Oh my!

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God!

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She is a very beautiful Mexican lady.

haruka -- why could it not be that she is simply a "very beautiful lady"? Why does race/etnicity even enter into your thinking? Are you surprised that a Mexican lady could be beautiful? This site, and this country, will be a better place when folks are not always looking for ways to label people. She's beautiful. Period.

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she is a very beautiful MEXICAN lady....there is nothing wrong with that statement...hereforenow...relax!

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Singer Claudia Vazquez knocks 'em dead

I'm dead (^^) Geeez! She gorgous!

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she is a very beautiful MEXICAN lady....there is nothing wrong with that statement..

What part of "born in Texas" do you not understand? She is American, plain and simple.

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to state "American" as an ethnicity means absolutely nothing....ok she is a Mexican American....

Moderator: Readers, please focus your comments on the lady's musical activities.

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Moderator: Readers, please focus your comments on the lady's musical activities

I was going to comment on what an absolutely beautiful young woman she is, but it seems I'm not allowed to. Boooooooooooooo.

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But we don't know much about her musical activities !!! :)

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The road to success for Vazquez started in San Antonio, Texas, where she was born.

That's odd. On her homepage the very first sentence reads, "Claudia Vazquez was born in El Paso, Texas." El Paso isn't exactly next door to San Antonio.

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she is a very beautiful MEXICAN lady

I actually thought that comment was a bit odd, too.. I mean, she's an American. She isn't even an immigrant, her parents were. So, even though it is clearly stated that she was from Texas, to say she's a beautiful Mexican lady is a bit strange to me..

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@fishy

If an American said she was a Mexican beauty it would sound normal to me, because they're just talking about her heritage not her nationality.

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Junnama- Yes. Agree. Also, a beautiful Mexican lady and Mexican beauty sound different to me.. She's a Mexican beauty is more like talking about her heritage while saying she's a Mexican lady is saying she is Mexican.

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From the article's title, I actually expected to read that some people had suffered heart attacks while watching her show and pronounced dead.

That would have been a far more interesting article!

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FYI only, she is MEXICAN-AMERICAN, not just American. The fact that she was born in Texas only makes her a citizen of USA, but that fact does not change her ethnicity.

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Who cares if she is American, Mexican or Mexican-America. Her talent is her own, and is a product of her own hard work. Claudia Vazquez is a beautiful talented individual.

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This article was about Claudia's musical career, so unless she is singing Selena tribute songs or performing in a Mariachi band, if she or the writer of this article feels no need to add Mexican- to her American then it is perfectly okay to do so. Has nothing to do with her performance.

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