Ignacio Peña Vidal, better known as Ignacio Peña; is a Puerto Rican singer/songwriter who was born in Río Piedras, Puerto Rico on April 21. 1973 and raised in Guaynabo and Santurce with a very strict upbringing. His maternal grandmother is Japanese. Influenced by major rock numbers from the early '80s, the young baseball enthusiast traded sports for music even when his parents weren't happy about his choice. Ignacio Peña got his first guitar in 1987, making his debut as a composer with a song titled "Don't Let Me Fall."
As a student he majored in music production and engineering and also experienced various multicultural experiences beneficial to his career. After studying at Boston's Berklee College of Music, the promising artist began producing jingles until the opportunity to make his first record came with. Produced by Pablo Manavello, El Mundo Al Revés was recorded in Miami and Nashville and released by Universal Latino after a live performance at Puerto Rico's Hard Rock Cafe on October 10, 2000. A year later, Ignacio Peña became an international star while opening for Neil Young and Oasis in Buenos Aires and performing along with Sting, Maná, and los Amigos Invisibles during the Caracas Pop Festival.
The music of Ignacio Peña represents a new Hispanic generation. A generation exposed to the best music of North America and Europe. Cities like London and Buenos Aires, internationally recognized artists like the Beatles and Luis Miguel and renown music groups like Pink Floyd. Not to mention singer-songwriters Charly Garcia, Bryan Adams and Antonio Carlos Jobim.
Born and raised in Puerto Rico, this timid little boy escalated in his preparation as a musician while attending school. His musical beginnings were due to an accident in which he dislocated his shoulder while playing baseball. As a result, he abandoned the sport and immediately focused his attention on music. If such events happened otherwise, Ignacio would not have attended Berklee.
After many attempts of trying to sign with recording companies, Ignacio met his would-be manager in a famous recording studio. There, he was given the opportunity to share his talented work, astonishing many.
This resulted in the musical production of Ignacio's first album, produced by Pablo Manavello, one of the music industries well-respected and recognized producers. This production was also overseen by top music engineer, Iker Gastaminza (Ricardo Montaner, Tempano) and also by mixing engineer, Bob St. John (Collective Soul, Extreme, Duran Duran).
El Mundo al Revés:
(The World Upside Down) was recorded in Miami and Nashville, debuting some of today's finest musicians. Because of its impeccable production and the luxurious details found within each song, one can easily gain the admiration for such talented work.
Becoming an object of wonder and esteem has taken Ignacio on the road to share his music with many throughout North and South America. In January 2001 he had the opportunity to share the stage with the British group OASIS, and the legendary NEIL YOUNG at the Buenos Aires Hot Festival in Argentina. Shortly after, Ignacio performed at the Caracas Pop Festival in Venezuela where he opened up for COLLECTIVE SOUL and once again, OASIS. Ignacio was then invited as the special guest in Latin singer/songwriter, Ricardo Arjona's concert tour where he performed in San Jose and Los Angeles, California and Miami, Florida. But Ignacio's proudest moment was when he opened up for his idol ERIC CLAPTON in Venezuela. Other artists that Ignacio shared the stage with include the beautiful and talented LAURA PAUSINI; and Chile's alternative rock group, LA LEY.
Due to the success of his many performances, Ignacio has been invited to and appeared on entertainment shows for the top two Latin networks, Univision and Telemundo. His work has won him much recognition and respect in the music and entertainment industry. Ignacio received the award PREMIO PAOLI in Puerto Rico for Best National Rock Artist. He also received the AMERICAN GRAPHIC DESIGN AWARD 2001, for Best Album Cover.
EL Mundo al Revés - THE SONGS The itinerary of songs begins with EN ESPAÑOL- initiating with a rock-like mid-tempo beat in which a comical manifesto about the existing love for ones language is spoken about. The second song listed, 75% DE AGUA, was the album's first single. An amazing guitar ensemble played by Jerry Douglas accompanies the lyrics, referring to a summer love. RETRATO DE LA LUNA is a beautiful ballad with "Beatle" like influences.
"PUERTOS was a song I wrote while waiting patiently in Miami International Airport. I was traveling from Tampa to Puerto Rico and unfortunately I missed my connecting flight. I had to wait for the next flight out, which was scheduled for the day after. I was stranded at the airport with no money, nothing. I didn't eat for 20 hours or speak to anybody. As I waited, I observed my surroundings, discovering various attitudes amongst the crowds. The reuniting of family members bringing forth happiness as opposed to those loved ones departing... the cries and laughter's of those involved, such circumstances are spoken about in this song," Ignacio states.
"EL FONGO ESTELAR is my opinion, as an observer, about the televised commercial ads one sees that are related to psychic hotlines. I find no sense in these, why would I want to know what my future holds? This song conveys a message to all those who convert the destiny of others to a fongo estelar. Fongo, meaning the union of the word mushroom and fungi, which mean the same, the only difference being that one is in Spanish and the other in English," says Ignacio. Within this song, the audience will encounter incredible orchestral sounds directed by Ed Calle, who you'll also hear playing the saxophone.
Ignacio also proclaims, "I never criticize, but only comment on certain music related issues. One must also take into consideration the title of this work, being EL MUNDO AL REVES, where Ignacio allows all things in it, to become out of context in a transgressed way. "Instead of us using our brains to think, we must use our feet, but I think that this idea will not emerge," as he sings in his song. Other valuables jewel songs that are incorporated within the album are SIN VENCER, MIENTRAS ESPERO EL FIN DEL MUNDO and also a heart-warming lullaby entitled DUERMETE, accompanied by a magical string quartet. Ignacio Peña undoubtedly believes that music speaks for itself.
El MUNDO AL REVES is a conjugation of eleven songs whose individual richness in colors allows the formation of an incredible conceptual spectrum.
Three years later, after touring throughout Latin America and the USA, having shared festival stages with the likes of Oasis, Eric Clapton, and Roger Waters, among others, Ignacio released his sophomore album "Anormal" (Hearsay Records Ltd.) Produced by Ignacio Peña, Iker Gastaminza and guitarist Tony Rijos, "Anormal" also includes a guest appearance by Gustavo Laureano, lead singer of La Secta All Star, in "Velocidad de escape" and it's English version, "Any year, any room, any highway". Other songs included in the album are "A Dios:", "Let go", "046640944328", "Falta 1 persona" and "You told me (It's only love)".
The record demonstrated Ignacio's evolution as an artist and songwriter plus the musical cohesiveness between his fellow band members that only comes from touring and playing together: Tony Rijos (guitar), Juan Carlos Bermudo (bass), Antonio Expósito (keyboards) and Ledif Franceschini (drums).
Conceived during the aftermath of the World Trade Center terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001, "Anormal" (Abnormal) is a conceptual proposal that entwines 12 songs that narrate a process of existential conflicts. Using violence as a trigger, "Anormal" was originated in times of worldwide terrorism, war and fear. "Hey tú (imbécil)" (Hey you (imbecile)), a straight attack at pundits and experts, was the album's first single. The video for it was directed by Ignacio himself, and was done in the "Phono/Gráphico" style, in which a collage of footage from an array of news and pop culture sources and personally edited by the artist, is constantly running synchronized with the music that's being played live. Images of local and international celebrities doing ordinary things are part of the video that also includes a scene re-enactment of the sci-fi classic film "A Clockwork Orange", directed by Stanley Kubrick who Peña claims as a musical influence.
This second record, which was released in Puerto Rico on March 31, 2004, marks a drastic change in Ignacio's rock performance style, after the launch of 2000's "El mundo al revés" (The world upside down), a singer/songwriter effort, which was more pop oriented and completely in Spanish. With it, Peña launched the first phase of an audiovisual universe. The album was the sonic part of Ignacio's audiovisual conceptual show titled "Phono/Gráphico"
In 2005, he relocated to Austin, Texas and created the band Bletzung. The band's self-titled debut album was released independently in late 2006. In May 2009, Peña became the first Latin artist to release an application for the iPhone giving his listeners access to his complete discography via streaming.
Songs For The Fall Of An Empire:
This single was released in August 7. 2009 on the format Digital 45, which it contains two songs written by Ignacio Peña: Defeat and Something Was Bound To Happen.
El Gran Debate Del Planeta Tierra:
Is a multimedia experience of things that happened to Ignacio in the past three years. It was released in June 2010. He said that in an occasion we was sent with his band to play in a high school of Texas where was developed a class about Global Warming. So, he realized young people have to receive enough information effectively with music. This proyect consists in giant screens with ecological information and Ignacio's music.
Besides, he declared to have investigated watching 50 movies and documentals and reading books on Internet about the Earth Planet.
Furthermore, he released the CD of El Gran Debate del Planeta Tierra on April 21. 2011, which it includes Mientras Espero el Fin del Mundo 2010, 75% de agua, Memoria Phonográfica, Let Go; Any Year, Any Room, Any Highway (feat. Gustavo Laureano); Remind Me When We Get There, You Told Me (It's Only Love),¿Nunca Te Importó Lo que Pasó?, Falta Una Persona, ¿Dónde Estabas? and Solar.
This work makes him to visit schools in Puerto Rico and United States giving lessons of life to the students through speeches and the images on the giant screens.