All About Me

Maria Herz in the Studio

The story so far…

“My songs are vehicles for storytelling, but they’re also my way of taking something that is subjective and making it objective; allowing me to move beyond whatever hardship or pain might have been the reason for the song in the first place and tell you about my lifes experiences straight from my heart,” says Maria Herz (Herz is the German word for HEART). “In contrast to my previous releases under my former  artist name “Whitney Mari” (Emptiness, Love Bomb, Floating, & Missing You – Inner City Groove Records) which were very dark and about painful life experiences, my latest songs (The Real Me, Back in Your Arms and “Let’s Get it Started”), are a return to the side of me I really want the world to see, positive, loving and uplifting”.   When asked what that is; “specifically”, a smiling Maria simply says, “Listen to the record.”

Indeed, “Let’s Get it Started” immediately strikes the listener as an emotionally honest song about going after your desires and dreams, performed with a pulsating Latin Dance beat that will have you tapping your foot, singing along to the catchy chorus, and wanting to get up and dance.  Drawing on her biggest pop influences; Whitney Houston, Jennifer Lopez, Shakira, Christina Aguilera and Alicia Key’s to name a few, Maria Herz serves up a sizzling hot dance masterpiece, that is sure to rule the top 40 dance airwaves this summer.

Maria  recalls the life changes she’s weathered, particularly the culture shock of moving from the small Slovakian town of Gajary, where she was raised to the major cities of Toronto, Vancouver and Chicago. “I was this naïve girl  from another country confronted by this fast-paced, ultra-hip scene,” she recalls. “There was a lot of confusion and angst and just figuring myself out.  It was a struggle. I’d gone to America to “make it” and had no idea what I was doing.”

Maria comes from a talented family of musicians and artists, her oldest brother Freddy hit it big in Slovakia when he became the bassist for the chart-topping rock group, “AC+”.  Her father was a famous conductor of Slovakian Symphony, and her brother Peter a concert violinist and accomplished painter.  From a young age, she was brought up in a culture that expected excellence in music and the arts.

Maria began the road to creating “Let’s Get it Started”, almost 10 years ago.  The song was a concept of her then producer, that morphed many times but remained unfinished and underwent several attempts, but never a finished product.   Performing under the moniker “Whitney Mari”, she decided to finally release “Let’s Get it Started” in 2017 just to get it out.  The result was a bland song of 2 chords that never really took the listener anywhere, and was a cross between Latin and Muslim/Moorish stylistically and did not sell.  “The song was dirty, the melody was not pretty, and the chorus contained dirty lyrics that were just not me” says Maria Herz, “I wanted more, I loved the basic concept but I wanted a positive uplifting song, that everyone would want to dance to”.

Maria wanted more, and decided she needed to make a change.  After 5 years with no success at Inner City Groove Records, a  lack of direction, musicianship, connections and leadership from her producer,  she has since cut her ties and moved on to become an independent artist.  In 2016 Maria met another musician, Ron Starr, who immediately saw her potential as an artist and lead vocalist.  In short order, they started performing together in a dance/pop duo in Chicago called “The Romantiques”, where she could focus on being a performer and singing her favorite material from her idols, while developing her own style.  In Mid 2017, the Romantiques became a full band, performing at resorts, casino’s with Maria and Ron both entertaining sell out crowds.

During this time, Maria decided to hire Starr to produce all her new original material and has been working with Starr as her exclusive producer for several months now. Together they have created 2 original, commercial releases in Slovakia (Moj Anjel & Ostrov) and have totally re-worked, “Let’s Get it Started”, set for release in summer 2018.

“My new producer has a great ear for pop music  and a knack for what audiences expect to hear from a pop artist.  He always pushes me to be my best, believes in me and has taught me to believe in myself.  Within minutes of hearing the original version of Let’s Get it Started, he sat at the piano and wrote out an entire new chord structure and melody and I was blown away, it was one of those YES!!! moments, where everything started to click. He transformed the song with a new intro, bridge and an amazing percussion build up on the ending.  The song now tells a great story and has a climax that will remind listeners of the great latin pop of the Miami Sound Machine.  “Let’s Get it Started” has become my favorite song that I have recorded to date”, says Herz.

Maria can be seen performing both her original material and dance/pop/duet covers with her band “The Romantiques”.  A Link to the Romantiques facebook page is on the home page (Just Click Home and scroll down), or you can click here to see where she is performing next.

You can pre-order “Let’s Get it Started”, by clicking here.