Chris and Steve Martinez, better known to you and me as their collective name the Martinez Brothers were both still teenagers when they first rose to prominence within the US house circuit . For some observers their age was something to be held against them but their experience belied their years as they’d be musical from a very young age under their father’s tutelage. Now however with school firmly behind them the Martinez Brothers are raring to go, enjoying one of the busiest touring schedules on the international circuit, while developing their still evolving sound from a variety of influences.
You guys say you don’t really have a sound. How difficult is it for you when describing what it is you do to people (especially reporters)?
Whenever people ask what we do, from interviewers to custom agents, we always say we play dance music. And that’s the best way to describe it because it could be techno, or house, or sometimes even hip hop, as long as it makes you dance, that’s the only rule.
You have joked on film about wanting to be picked-up by a salsa band and become “legendary ex-cowbell players”. How much of what you do (the way you perform and produce) is influenced by your Latino roots?
It’s not an influence, its just who we are. We grew up with heavy latin music in the house, it was what we really wanted to do before house came into the picture, so we incorporate it in everything. The way we play, the music we make, always with some latin charm.
Whenever you’ve been interviewed, there seems to be a great chemistry and affection between you. Are you like super brothers, or do you actually argue like siblings at all?
Obviously every sibling has their moments, but to be honest, not as much with us. We’re both kind of too laid back and non confrontational to argue and all we do is joke around all day so it makes for a pretty peaceful environment. But yea, call us super brothers ha
Your dad is often cited as the major influence in you both being so musical and inspired. It sounds quite idyllic. Was he pushy with his education of you both, or was it a gentle process?
He’s definitely a major inspiration and factor in all this, but he definitely wasn’t pushy at all. He was never a DJ so its not something he wanted to live through us. His dreams were for us to go to college and stuff, although he knew all we wanted to do was music. He was just happy sharing his knowledge of music, (also gaining knowledge with us when we would go to the record stores together) reminiscing on the past with us, listening to mixes on the radio with us; it was more of a way the three of us bonded rather than something he was trying push on us.
How has Dennis Ferrer’s guidance helped you guys? Was this like graduating from one school (your dad) to another (Dennis)?
Dennis is definitely like a father figure for us in all this, he is the man that showed us the door and opened it up as far as producing music and DJing. He was building quite a name for himself at the time we started hooking up with him, and he was teaching us things that my dad couldn’t. How to make records. Through him we also met our agent and then started the bookings. His guidance played a pivotal role for sure
How hard was it to make school work while you were starting out on your journey and being offered gigs that lots of people would bite their own arm off to play at?
It definitely wasn’t easy, and needless to say, we’re both glad we don’t have to deal with it anymore! But those times we’ll never forget because it kept us grounded, so in a way it was a good thing.
Playing at DC10 or Space Ibiza are probably up there in the arm biting off leagues. Which clubs have been the most enjoyable for you to play:
For sound? Just recently played Vanilla Ninja in Moscow, and the sound is AMAZING!! For crowd? Nothing like the DC10 crowd For the prestige? Panorama Bar, talking about big leagues!
When you’re on the road as much as you guys, how do you maintain a sense of your roots that is so evidently important to you?
We travel with them, they are us! We always have some good salsa music near by, always have some good hip hop near by, those things remind us of home.
Do you take mascots or anything like that with you on the road?
If we did, we would proabably always lose them, so no.
Do you have a ritual when you get back home – something that makes you feel grounded again?
Some good ol’ moms cooking, always, always does the trick
Your age has often been a factor in interviews. You’re both adamant that there is no disadvantage in your youth. Does that mean that you think this is a young man’s game?
It’s a young mans generation. Young people are ruling the world, in industry, in music, entertainment. We think the sky is the limit, and in this day, age is not a factor.
At the beginning was it tough to break through perceptions of your age?
Oh absolutely, people to this day think that we’re 19 and 16 sometimes, were 24 and 21 now guys haha
You think you’ll still be doing this when you’re in your 30s? 40s?
That’s too long for us to even think about, take everything day by day. The beauty of what we do is that there’s so many avenues and lanes you can jump into, and we plan on jumping into a few.
If you had it all to do over again, is there anything you’d change or do differently?
Not one thing!
Any advice to the budding 10yr old producers out there who are looking to get into the scene?
Don’t be a follower!!
Last question… Who are you guys following right now musically? Any DJs/producers that you have mad-love for?
Super mad love for a lot of the dc 10 guys, Seth, Appollonia, Father & Sons from Ibiza, these guys are throwing down dope sets ad putting out dope music!
The Martinez Brothers will be making their festival debuts at Italy’s Vertigo Festival for more information head to