You know BrunoMars, the smoothed-out, pop soul singer behind the choruses for B.o.B.'s "Nothin' On You" and Travie McCoy's"Billionaire"? Not only does he sing the hooks for those songs, he co-produced them alongwith his The Smeezingtons business partners Philip Lawrence and Ari Levine.
But here's the even cooler Bruno Mars factoid. In 1992, apint-size Mars (born Pete Hernandez) portrayed a miniature Elvis impersonator inthe Nicolas Cage and Sarah Jessica Parker film Honeymoon In Vegas. The young Hernandez had a scene-stealingmoment, perfectly performing the King's "Can't Help Falling In Love With You,"decked out in a sparkling, royal blue costume and pompadour.
He got squeamish and embarrassed when Perez Hilton asked himabout his old gig, and jokingly referred to himself as a circus freak.
The artist who is now touring with Maroon 5 and OneRepublic,learned how to gyrate like his idol when he was 4 years old, watching hisfamily band play Presley songs at shows in Hawaii. He quickly joined the act and headedto Hollywoodwhen he graduated from high school.
His career as an artist did not immediately take off. But hebegan working as a songwriter when he was offered $20,000 for one of his writings.
Hits for other artists came quickly. The Smeezingtons workedon music with Adam Levine, Brandy, and K'Naan, and in 2009, landed their firstNo. 1 hit with Flo Rida's "Right Round."
"Nothing On You" and "Billionaire" started a buzz for Bruno.
He titled his EP It'sBetter If You Don't Understand because it's difficult for people tounderstand his sound, which blends influences from multiple genres.
"A lot of people told me, 'You can't mix hip-hop, reggae,rock, R&B because people won't know who you are'," he told Flux Hawaii Magazine. "'You have to defineyourself with this one sound.' That would bug the sh-t out of me because I justwant to write what I feel. That slogan, 'It's better if you don't understand'means to me, just listen and you make of it what you want.'"
What the video for Bruno Mars's debut single "The Other Side" featuring Cee Lo and B.o.B.