FYIG Chats With Actor/Musician Stephen Martines

0
621

Tell us a little bit about yourself

Absolutely! I’m Stephen Martines, a native of St. Louis, Missouri. Some may know me from television, some may not. Either way, I’m incredibly grateful for those who have been supportive and continue to do so. For those who are new to my journey, welcome! I’m humbled to share my passion with you. Me in a nutshell: daddy, singer; songwriter, actor and soccer player. My music can best be described as ‘Country infused with Soul and Pop undertones’. That said; I’ve just scratched the surface of the sound I hope to incorporate. The beauty of today’s Country music is that it has room for multiple genre infusions, keeping things interesting and alive.

You’ve appeared on many shows like General Hospital, Guiding Light, and Supernatural to name a few. What drew you to those more dramatic roles?

I have been extremely blessed throughout my career to have had the privilege to work with those I have and portray the roles offered to me. I enjoy characters that allow me to draw from deep within. Fortunately, those roles are often times the ones I book or am offered. They provide the outlet to tap into the darker places we often bury or want to forget. Therapeutic for me, if you will. 

Do you have any other acting roles on the horizon?

At this moment, music is at the top of my list. There are some irons in the fire, yes. We shall see! 

What prompted you to get into music after having such a prominent acting career?

I appreciate the word ‘prominent’ being used to define my acting career. I am not sure I perceive it that way. Mostly because I’m not done yet – I hope. There are goals still to be reached and dreams to pursue. In truth, music has been a passion of mine since I was a little boy. When I made the transition from soccer to the military and then into television I recognized that doors were open to pursue many creative avenues. But after several failed attempts at music, I decided to put it on the back burner until the time was right. It wasn’t until my move to Nashville that the flame was re-lit. The real ignition came from the birth of my daughter. I want to set an example for her that chasing dreams and accomplishing them on any level is, in fact, attainable. Persistence, dedication, preparation, and determination are the base elements; find your talent and develop it. The decision to finally pursue music at a higher level, overall, wasn’t all that difficult. It’s a part of who I am at my core, and I needed to explore it in order to know I can truly do it. My success is determined in part by the work I’m willing to put forth, and I’m incredibly proud of what we are doing and believe we are on the right path.

Did your famous uncle, Guy Lombardo, have anything to do with that itch to get into music?

 ‘Mr. New Years Eve’ is definitely an inspiration, yes. I strive for greatness in all I do. Much like Guy did. To know such talent existed in my bloodline is an honor. 

You have a new single out called “Shot Glasses and Bullet Holes”. Tell us a little bit about this song.

Shot Glasses & Bullet Holes represents a different type of heartbreak for me – one not only buried in the classic sense of tattered romance but also the same deep, soul-punching feelings enshrined in loss and personal failure. I was often alone as a child – mostly by choice. Without divulging too much, self-imposed solitude was my way of escaping childhood pain. The chorus of this song – co-penned by Brandon Ray (“Ends of the Earth,” “Small Talkin'”) and Bart Butler (Thomas Rhett‘s “Make Me Wanna”; Jon Pardi, Dierks BentleyClay Walker) takes me back decades to a time when, like so many of us, I was searching for who I was – trying to break down the stifling, claustrophobic sensation of living almost entirely within my own walls. The self-inflicted isolation I experienced at that point in my life is where I learned to bury pain. It’s where I also found sports and music as my coping mechanism, my source of inner peace. We all have our own way of dealing with things, in the end; … It’s what I do when I don’t know how, as the song goes. My connection to SG&BH was cemented after Brandon gave me permission to change a line in the last verse to when my old man passed – a small but important alteration to the lyric that I needed to make this song truly my own.  That one sentence carries with it years of heartbreak – a loss I still struggle with today, over two decades later. Everyone can relate to these moments of intense sadness – whether it’s the passing of a loved one, a crushed relationship or personal mistakes that result in life-altering circumstances – and we each have our own ways of dealing with them. For some, as in the song, it involves numbing ourselves to the pain and engaging in distractions that pull our attention away, if only momentarily, from the things that haunt us. I’ve been wanting to release this song for some time – it feels like I’m baring my soul – and the time now feels right to do it. 

Can audiences expect an EP or full-length album on the way?

Absolutely. Country music is a singles game right now. We are focusing on releasing several more singles over the next few months before releasing an EP. Our next release is a few weeks away. I’m ecstatic to share this one with the world!

What advice would you give to aspiring musicians?

Never give up! That in itself is everything! Believe in yourself. Trust your instincts. Think. Be. Do! 

What’s life like for you outside of the studio?

Being a dad to a four-year-old takes precedence over all else, certainly over any spare moments I might have – and all other ‘non-daughter-directed time’ is given to pressing forward on the music front. I do attempt to unwind, however. That consists of snuggling up to my little girl on the couch, enjoying some ice cream or a Popsicle (her favorite) and watching any inane T.V. show or movie that she wants. So, essentially unwinding per her dictates. And, I play soccer whenever the opportunity arises. Other than that, I’m pretty much a homebody.

How do you balance life as a father with being on the road?

Balance is crucial in all walks of life. For me, I take comfort in knowing that my priority is my little girl. Nothing comes before her. Everything I do is defined by her and for her, therefore, that becomes my balance. Any amount of time away from her is a struggle but the ‘why’ is my driving force. I strive to set the example that chasing dreams and achieving them is possible. I want her to dream big. She IS my balance. 

Let the readers know where to find you online.

Heck yeah!!