Performer Sammi* Benz is working hard to make a mark in the music industry. Performing for different radio events in New York and with the newest release of her single, "It's Time," (featuring model Janice Dickinson) she's ready to make her next move. We caught up with the budding artist to get the 411.
Can you tell me a bit about your background?
"I was born and raised in New York City. My mom raised my three brothers and me by herself in New York City. We all went to the NYC Public Schools. My three brothers are all US Navy men and I went to NYU. My mom was born in Santiago del Estero, Argentina so we were raised within the Argentine [and] Latin culture. That included language, food, music, dances, art, and of course my most favorite sport of futbol (soccer)."
How did you become interested in music? What’s your first memory of wanting to be a performer?
"One day when I was 5 or 6 years old, my family and I were at the Javitz Convention Center in NY. I snuck on stage and performed Madonna's 'Material Girl' to the utter shock of my family and the producers. After my performance, Pepsi, the event sponsor, approached my mom for permission for me to perform for the remaining days of the event."
How long have you been in the industry?
"I've been in the industry for a long while. In my teens I was modeling, dancing, acting and writing music. Then after acting on many network television network shows, I found my heart pointing me back to music."
What past projects are you most proud of? Why?
"My first movie, Danny Hasting's 'The Love Potion' because it was my first real opportunity to connect with a vast audience. As well, completing my debut album 'Reserved' and the release of my debut video 'It's Time.'
Has your culture/being Latina influenced your sound at all?
"Absolutely. Since my music is generated by emotions, all my music is influenced by Latin upbringing."
Who are your favorite artists?
"Michael Jackson and Madonna."
Who would you love to collaborate with?
"The person I would've most loved to perform a duet with is Michael Jackson. Unfortunately, circumstances will no longer allow that. However, I would love to collaborate with Pitbull, Mana, RedOne, Madonna, David Guetta, Tiesto, Jennifer Lopez, Ne-Yo, DJ Pauly D, Enrique Iglesias, Wisin Y Yandel and a lot others too."
Who’s your career icon – someone who you’d love to follow in their footsteps?
"I wish to blaze my own trail as far as my career is concerned. However, I would really appreciate succeeding on a level as did Madonna."
What’s next for you career-wise?
"Expand my music to global acceptance, doing live concert tours and releasing my debut album 'Reserved.'"
What was the inspiration for 'It’s Time'? How did you come up with the idea for the music video?
"The writing of 'It's Time' was stimulated by desire to express that everyone should take the time to enjoy life. The video was meant to visualize that people shouldn't wait to follow their dreams. It's time right now."
Where do you want to be in 10 years?
"I hope in 10 years I'm well established in the music and acting industries along with successfully running my diabetes charities and after school programs."