Gabe Martinez

@gabrielwingsofficial

Emily’s YouTube


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EP 175: Gabriel Martinez (autogenerated)

[00:00:00] Dane Reis: [00:00:00] You booked it. Episode 175.

[00:00:10] Okay, let’s get started. I am excited to introduce my guest today. Game Martinez. Are you ready for this game? 

[00:00:20]Gabriel Martinez: [00:00:20] I am so ready. Let’s get to it.

[00:00:22]Dane Reis: [00:00:22] All right. Gabe is a career stage performer trained from an early age, by a family of musicians, cutting his teeth onstage with his father’s jazz band and various other wedding and event bands. After graduating from Muhlenberg college, with a degree in theater performance, he began a career as a cruise ship singer and after seven years, See with several national tours and regional theater contracts mixed in he and his wife, Emily made the leap to land life.

[00:00:52] They currently reside in Weehawken, New Jersey with their pitfall Daisy, where Gabe is beginning a film and television career with the help of the good people at hell’s kitchen talent agency. Gabe, that is a quick intro of who you are and what you’ve done, but why don’t you tell us a little bit more about yourself, fill in the gaps and a little bit more about what you do as a professional in the entertainment industry.

[00:01:18] Gabriel Martinez: [00:01:18] Yeah. Okay. Um, I’m gonna have to try and strike the balance because I kind of do a little bit of everything. So it can either be very broad or very granular. Uh, just the quick bits are what you are heard. You mentioned, you know, like a, a career performer in various. Different aspects of the entertainment world.

[00:01:34] I grew up with musicians singing around the house and caroling at Christmas, all that kind of stuff. When I was, I think, 11, I played my first gig with my father’s band, but even up until then, I’d been, you know, they would always just drag me up on stage, make me sing it. It was kind of a, it’s kind of second nature growing up.

[00:01:52]Um, in high school, I kind of didn’t have much of an interest in theater if only because, because I’d only ever done straight music until then, but I got injured during the football season and the theater director came around and heard me singing and , uh, poached me for any, get your gun that winter. And that’s when my theater career kind of got off the ground and , uh, went to college for theater, played football there too.

[00:02:16] But again, an injury kind of knocked me out of it. So that was kind of the best thing that ever happened to me. I was able to go full bore into my performance studies, but , um, Since then the career’s just kind of taken me wherever it’s taken me.

[00:02:29]Um, a lot of this and that. Not a lot of. Straight acting per se, not a lot of a studio recording as a musician. It’s kind of kind of been a little bit of everything, mostly cruise ships, some tours here and there, a lot of wedding gigs, that sort of thing right now, I suppose I’m doing whatever other performers doing and just trying to reevaluate my life and just try to find out who I am without working all the time.

[00:02:52] Although I’m sure you can relate to that. Dan. I think you’ve probably done as good a job as anybody. I know it like. Finding something and just going at it and making something out of that. And I think the rest of us are just trying to figure it out at this point. So I suppose that brings us up to the present day.

[00:03:09] I think I’ve missed anything. How am I doing?

[00:03:11]Dane Reis: [00:03:11] Yeah. Beautiful. Great. Love the filling in the gap part. And let’s dig into this first section here and Gabe, look, I am a sucker for a good quote. What is your favorite quote? You’d like to share with everyone?

[00:03:26] Gabriel Martinez: [00:03:26] I was back and forth on this one, but I decided to go back to my roots and I picked a miles Davis one for today. This is when it’s always stuck with me. Um, I’m sure I heard it from my dad when I was younger, but when I took a class on it in college, this was one of the ones that was drilled into us.

[00:03:41] Miles Davis said, don’t play what’s there play. What’s not there. And as a jazz musician, this of course refers to , uh, improvisation and ad-libbing and even , um, on a, on a more basic level , um, jazz was sort of the first music to say, Hey, let’s bend up to a note or let’s slide through a note. And up until then it was all about hitting every note pitch.

[00:04:05] Perfect. Every single time. So. To me in a broader sense, it becomes less about just full improvisation because I found out in college that I’m not a very good improv actor. I tried out for an improv group. It did not go well, but um, , um, I’ve taken it to mean in whatever you do and performance, you have to.

[00:04:25]Make it your own because there’s plenty enough of, you know, big studios that kind of make the entertainment world go around, just trying to repackage the same thing over and over and over again. And I suppose if you’re lucky enough, you get a big payday off of something like that. But for the most part, all that you can do is try and just do something different.

[00:04:44]If I’m, if I’m listening to music or watching something purely for my own enjoyment, what I’m looking for is something different. I don’t want to. I don’t want to hear you sing the song the same way the original did. I could just listen to the record. What can you do? That’s different. And even if you’re not some super creative mastermind, I know I’m not terribly creative, but in all things that I do, I try and bring something just a little different that will make someone perk up and say, Oh, all right.

[00:05:12] I haven’t heard that before. Don’t play. What’s there play. What’s not there. Miles Davis.

[00:05:17]Dane Reis: [00:05:17] So good. And I really like how you expanded on that and what it means to you. I completely agree. It’s really, really important to bring something, bring you to the

[00:05:31] Gabriel Martinez: [00:05:31] And that’s also different for everybody. Isn’t it like? That doesn’t mean that you should just go off script in the middle of a scene when you’ve, you know, rehearsed it one way. I know that , uh,my wife and I got together doing , um, 25th annual Putnam County spelling bee a decade ago now. And I was kind of, I was at a point in my.

[00:05:49]Early early quarter that I kind of couldn’t help myself. And I was always throwing in little bits here and there and God Lashey. She was so she would get so mad at me. It’s a wonder we ever got together, man, the look she would give me on stage. And so of course , there’s, there’s a space between that. And just reading the lines and standing where you’re told to stand.

[00:06:10] It means different things for everybody. And there are some projects that it’s more appropriate for or less appropriate for. But I think as an artist , you, you must, you must just some degree make it your own, do something with it that nobody else would have done.

[00:06:23]Dane Reis: [00:06:23] , for sure. I was interviewing someone and I, the name is not in my brain at the moment, but she was talking about choreography and she said, it’s like coloring a photo, right? Like you have like a coloring book, you have the outline, right. And that’s the choreography, right. You have to stick within those that confines, but you can do whatever the heck you want to fill it with life and uniqueness and colors.

[00:06:46] That’s where you

[00:06:47] Gabriel Martinez: [00:06:47] And that’s playing, what’s not there. Right. Right. You must also play, you know, Most of what’s there to some extent. So I suppose I’m quibbling on the, on the actual text of the quote now, but of course it’s, it’s whatever you take it to mean. And yeah, like I’ve played with the, I did a lot on cruise ships and, um, I’m , I’m, I’m not dragging anybody under the bus here, but when we would be in rehearsals for say, when I was doing the house band.

[00:07:08]Uh, I would run up against it with people there would be like , well, that’s not how it is on the record. It’s like, we’re going to be playing in a bar where they have speakers. They can just play the record. We’re alive, then let’s, let’s do something. Let’s, let’s do something interesting. Let’s make someone sit up and take notice.

[00:07:19] We don’t have to write a new song, but we can definitely like put a hit there where there wasn’t one or do a key change or, you know, any number of things. It can be the, I think the scope of this is pretty wide and however you choose to interpret it.

[00:07:33]Dane Reis: [00:07:33] For sure. And let’s get into this next section here. And Gabe, of course, you’re an entertainer, I’m an entertainer. And I think that you’d agree that this industry can be one of the most subjective, brutally, honest, personally, emotional industries in existence. And you know, you know, as well as I, that in order to create and have a successful career in this industry, like your having now, it takes a lot.

[00:08:00] Of dedication and hard work. And while yeah, there is an outrageous amount of fun and excitement doing what we do there. Our also our fair share of obstacles, challenges, and failures, we are going to experience and we’re going to have to move forward through. So tell us, what is one key challenge, obstacle or failure you’ve experienced in your career and how did you come out the other side better

[00:08:24] because of

[00:08:24] Gabriel Martinez: [00:08:24] You know this year in particular, um, , particular, um, I’m sure we’re all finding out a lot about ourselves, but one of the things I found out is my career has actually been actually been very, very smooth up until now. And I think that the story I was telling myself in my head was different. and I I’m finding this year that I think I I think I was very, very privileged.

[00:08:44] Up until now. now. Uh, I think I worked hard for everything I got and I don’t think I got anything that I didn’t deserve, but I I’ve moved pretty smoothly from one gig to the next, for the past decade, really, since I left school. And it’s only this year that I’m really coming up against, , against, uh,  not to you know, not to bring the whole tone down, but some real mental health challenges and kind of experiencing anxiety, depression for the first time in my life.

[00:09:08] So I suppose it’s not terribly original to say that 2020 has been the biggest obstacle in my career, but rather I think that has challenged my own perceptions of myself. I think I also, from a mental health standpoint was very blessed until now as well. It was never really anything I had to think about.

[00:09:25] And, , And, um, I was saying somebody just the other day, I think that being in the business, as long as I had been, and I’m sure you can attest to this at a certain point, it becomes. A job. And not that you don’t appreciate it or don’t enjoy doing it, but enjoy doing it, but you know, like you go up on stage and you dance and you sing and you sweat and the spotlights hit you and you change costumes and people get up and cheer, but we’re really punching in and punching out of work when you’ve done it long enough.

[00:09:51] And you’ve gotten, you’ve grown accustomed to it. , So, um, my wife and I recently made the move to land and we left cruise ship life to find out what the next thing was. And I think that I never really. Realized just how much that meant to me. I think the story I told myself in my own head was , always, this this is great.

[00:10:08] I’m good at it. And I’m getting paid good money. And then when it’s time to do something else, it’ll be time to do something else. And I’m not really defined by performing and being on stage. And I think this year has shown me that that’s not quite the case. So everyone’s had their own challenges , with, uh, 20, 20 in the pandemic and quarantine and lockdown, of course.

[00:10:28] But for me, it’s been. Really about having to be stagnant in my career for the first time and confronting what that says about me. And it’s been quite uncomfortable at times. I’ve uh, Had sessions with a therapist for the first time, which was so helpful, which I can’t recommend enough to anyone who’s feeling any kind of way who feeling any kind of depression or anxiety, but yeah, that’s been a huge challenge for me as a performer, not having anything to do and confronting what that means.

[00:11:00] And just as a person, , person, uh, dealing with mental health issues for the first time, , the first time, um,

[00:11:04] Dane Reis: [00:11:04] Yeah, I think you’re spot on. I think, I think your experience is being shared by a lot of people and I don’t think you, you started by saying, you know, not to bring the mood down , uh, and addressing mental health, but I think it’s so important to address mental health. And it’s such a, it’s so good. I think in these past few years that it’s okay now, but where people are open about talking about mental health, because it’s actually a thing.

[00:11:25] It’s always been a thing, right? No one would talk about it though. And finally we are, and there, these are conversations we need to have, and there’s plenty of people listening to this episode right now that, you know, it helps to hear you talk about that and be like, look. This is not this amazing year.

[00:11:43]It’s, it’s hard. And for the first time I’m really having to deal with these things and you’re not alone. And I think by expressing that only helps other people, it helps listeners out there. So thank you so much for sharing all

[00:11:55] of

[00:11:55] Gabriel Martinez: [00:11:55] of course. And I th I think that’s even another way in which I’m privileged. It didn’t really become an issue in my life until.  Uh, such a time as it’s become much less stigmatized and much more widely talked about. And this year in particular at a time when so many other people are also going through it, and there’s a lot of commiseration and shared experience.

[00:12:16] So I am thankful for that. that. It’s uh, on the dark days, of course, it’s hard to see the forest for the trees as it were, but. Yeah, you try and keep perspective. And on the good days, you really, the good days, you really, really think about how, you know, there’s a lot of people that I didn’t have friends. I won’t say any names, but I have a very good friend of mine. good friend of mine. who’s who’s really been helping me this year. Who’s been dealing with this stuff since high school and I high school and I always, I always took for granted and I’ve I,  days, I feel really, really grateful that this has happened to me at such a time, as I have resources to deal with it.

[00:12:49]Dane Reis: [00:12:49] yeah, for sure. And let’s move on to a time that I like to call your. Spotlight moment. That one moment in time you realized, yes, I am going to be an entertainer for a living or maybe it was, yes. This is what I need to be doing as an entertainer. Tell us about

[00:13:12] that.

[00:13:12] Gabriel Martinez: [00:13:12] this is a good one. This is a tough one for me because It wasn’t just something to say what I said that I really have been doing this since I was, since, before I can remember the earliest VHS home videos of me are on a stage singing and dancing. So I chose one. That It was the very first paying gig I had for a few years. I’d been just sitting in with my dad’s band and like I would do their bar gigs on a Friday nights and I would get free sodas as you know, 11,  12 years old. Um, it was a Dixieland jazz band and I played trombone and I sang whenever, whatever they told me to sing.

[00:13:50] My, the beginning of my career was very much, Hey, Gabe, stand here, sing this. sing this. And so. The first time my dad hired me for a gig and paid me me cash at the end of it. Like that was a big one for me, because I always just grown up with my dad’s band. So when he hired me for a gig, I’ll never forget, there was a big swing. Bump big swing music and swing dance bump right in the early aughts. I don’t know if you , know if you remember this, uh, bands like big, bad voodoo daddy and squirrel nut zippers were 

[00:14:18] Dane Reis: [00:14:18] yeah , yeah,

[00:14:18] Gabriel Martinez: [00:14:18] busters, but only for like two years, it was wild. It was almost a blip on the radar, , radar, but, um, Seton hall university was like, they had somebody coming in to teach swing dance lessons, and they hired my dad’s band to play for the lessons.

[00:14:32] And then for a dance party afterwards. And my dad hired me and we actually sat down and rehearsed and wrote out charts and. I did the gig. And I remember like halfway through the gig, I turned breathless to our bass player guy called Timmy Mets. I’ll never forget. And I said, Timmy, can you believe we’re getting paid to do this?

[00:14:51] Because it had always been such a thing that I took for granted. And to think that I was getting paid for it. And even though I always knew that I was gonna. Have a career in the arts from a very young age, that was a real rush to know that like, this is something I could really like to have the cash in my hand and say, wow, this is something concrete that I can focus on.

[00:15:10] And Timmy looked at me and he said, buddy, they don’t play us to do this. They don’t pay us to play music. They pay us to drive here two hours in short traffic and lug 200 pounds of gear and just try and plug all the amps into one outlet because nobody thought to bring a power cord and. More than likely deal with some snotty event planner and then do it all again at the end and drive home and not crawl into bed until three in the morning.

[00:15:38]That’s what they pay us for. We play music for free.

[00:15:41]Dane Reis: [00:15:41] Yeah.

[00:15:42] Gabriel Martinez: [00:15:42] with me. That was such a moment for me to be like, not only can I support myself and make a living doing this, but I still get to play music and. Sing for people and put a smile on people’sfaces and that’s, and that’s the gift really? I’ll do the rest of it. Happily. If I I’ll do the rest of it. Happily. If I can, if I can still do that, I can still have that moment.

[00:16:02]Dane Reis: [00:16:02] Yeah, absolutely. I really like that mindset, mind shift and that perspective it’s so good.

[00:16:09] Gabriel Martinez: [00:16:09] and I think you’ll agree that when you’ve been like slogging away on a cruise ship contract and living in a little shoe box cabin and eaten like bad mess food for months and months at a time, I think that could be the first thing to go. So that’s that’s something I look back on   frequently to remind myself as like, yes, that moment you can always have that moment on this job.

[00:16:27] If you take a breath and. Choose to reach for it.

[00:16:32]Dane Reis: [00:16:32] Love that. And I want to piggyback on that real quick and talk about your number one, booked it moment. Walk us through that day, the auditions and call backs. If they happen to be a part of it. What was going on in your life. And what about that moment? Makes it your favorite? Booked it moment.

[00:16:52] Gabriel Martinez: [00:16:52] Okay. I was down to two for this , for this one as well, but, um, I know that , that Emily, uh, told you about the cruise ship gig that we booked together. So I thought I would tell you about my very first cruise ship gig. , gig. I had, um, graduated from school and I had been at home living at home with my parents for, I suppose it was, I suppose it was a year.

[00:17:13] It was about a year. And I had been working on jobs here and there. I had been getting , some gigs, um, I had been getting this. I got some seasonal holiday gigs that year, so gigs that year, so I did some, some. Christmas caroling and that and that sort of thing that year. So I was, you know, picking along and then I was still going 5:00 AM, all those New York auditions.

[00:17:30] I was doing it every day and nothing had quite popped yet. And I remember one day I went into for pirates of Penzance somewhere. I have no, I think maybe Ethica or something. It was ethical doing cards of Penzance. So the only thing that was there that day, I was like, am I really gonna crawl out of bed at four in the morning to go stand in in line for pirates of Penzance at, at the golf?

[00:17:50] And I went, yeah, And I did it and I was in the waiting room and I walked out and I went into the ,   audition room and realized that I was in the wrong room. I’d walked into carnival cruise lines by accident. And I said, Oh gosh, sorry, wrong room. And the guy at the table said, you know, we don’t have anybody right now.

[00:18:08] You’re here. Do you want to sing for us? And two weeks later I was on my first ship.

[00:18:12]Dane Reis: [00:18:12] get out of town. That is so cool.

[00:18:15] Gabriel Martinez: [00:18:15] sang for 30 seconds. I did a, I did 16 counts of choreography. I was in and out of that room in under four minutes. And two weeks later I was on my first ship and it was just so serendipitous. And to think that that was the inciting incident for such a huge chunk of my career and not just where I had most of my experience and made most of my money since then, but also where I. Learn the real nuts and bolts of what it takes to be a professional performer, because what they teach you in school is of course, very important, but can only do so much, like you can only talk about beats and actions and motivation and all of that for so long, and you can only do so much like weird freeing movement work for so long, but to get on a cruise ship in day, one day, oneof rehearsals have a very, very stern.

[00:19:06]British lady choreographer saying, what are you doing with your hands, darling, put them at your sides. Don’t move them. My God, please don’t move those ridiculous hands that’s that you, you can only get that on the , that on the job and, and, and.

[00:19:20] Dane Reis: [00:19:20] Which supervisor was 

[00:19:22] Gabriel Martinez: [00:19:22] Oh my God. I don’t know if she’ll be mad at me. If I say yay. Uh, I just love her so much.

[00:19:26] She’s not mean I thought she was, I was scared of her, but I love her so much. It was Andrew Winters. God bless her. I hope she’s listening. Um, in fact, I’m going to send her the cause I’ve, I’ve shared this I’ve shared this with her as well. I’ve talked, I’ve talked to her frankly, about this because she’s become a very close friend and II always tell her it was like, you know, it was so wide-eyed when I got on that first contract, but yeah.

[00:19:45] I there’s there’s been nothing so valuable in my life after all those years and months and semesters of like very heady performance classes as Angela Winters, God bless her saying, stand here, do this with your hands. Like the real nuts and bolts of it. And  just to think that that all started because I walked into the wrong audition room and what might’ve happened.

[00:20:10] Dane Reis: [00:20:10] Yeah, so good. And because you’ve had so much of your career, that was on ships, can you just comment and talk about ship life a little bit? Your thoughts on it. How do you feel about ships as a market, as a place to perform as a singer or as a dancer? Is it a good place to perform? Is it something that you recommend to people?

[00:20:35] Because I think even today there’s a bit of a stigma still that surrounds cruise ship, performing.

[00:20:41] Gabriel Martinez: [00:20:41] You’re absolutely right. And I don’t know if we’ll ever if we’ll ever get rid of that. Right. But I think I would recommend it to anybody. Of course, there’s nothing but good that can come of it. I will say that it’s not for everybody. You don’t really know until you get there and give it a shot. I know people will, obviously they’re not there now, but I know some of my very best friends have been there since the early aughts and will be there until their knees fall out. fall out.

[00:21:06] Like they it’s it’s their home. It’s their life. And it’s perfect for them. I was there. I left a couple of times. So I had, my career was a bit broken up, all told about seven years on and off something like 11 or 12 different ships.different ships. And,  and I just, by the end, it w it had gotten rough. It had weighed on us.

[00:21:27] And I hesitate to say, we stayed one contract too long because the last contract again, so many great things happened. Learn so much, met so many great people, but by the end of that last contract, last contract, it was really, really. Really time. And that’s just personal. We had used up all the cruise ship energy in our body, but it’s just been so formative for me.

[00:21:50] And I, I know people that have, that have had really bad experiences left saying they’ll never come back. And I’m so glad that didn’t happen to me because you just. there’s no there’s no substitute for it. I don’t think. And even me coming out of four year university, I was still very wide eyed coming off the ships, but I know, and I’m sure you do too.

[00:22:09] Like Like I think I think I remember telling Emily that you started right out of school and I knew all these like Aussie dancers coming right out of school to the ships, just starting to travel the world. And it’s just the most magical thing. It’s so wonderful. And I think, whereas by the end of my last contract, I was very embittered about it. I think I’ve arrived at a place where I can look back on it and say, back on it and say, man, that was, that was the coolest thing. And I did it for so long and I made good money doing it. And I it. And I met some of my very, very best friends. Some of the most loved people in my life. And honestly, The people I worked with on cruise ships for some of the most talented people I’ve ever met.

[00:22:46] So I’ve seen, I suppose, sort of hokey maybe, , maybe, uh, old school cruise ship performances that I could be like, yeah, I can see where yeah, I can see where the, where the stereotype comes from. But man, so much of it is just such high quality , but men, it is round the clock work.

[00:23:04] And it is, if you’re a singer it’s spending all day warming up your voice. If you’re a dancer, it’s all day working on your joints and working on your flexibility and making sure you’re not getting injured. injured. it’s it’s something that if I had a week to talk continuously about it, I still could not. I could not make you understand what it’s like, unless you’d done it before.

[00:23:27] And it was just so wonderful and I’m so thankful for my time there we’re right on the on the Hudson river now. Well, close to it where a bit of a Walkman Hudson river, but like whenever I run down, , whenever I run down,um, the river walk with my dog in the morning, not anymore, but before the pandemic, I would see cruise ships in hell’s kitchen.

[00:23:45] And I would always have this little Pang like that part of my life is over. But man, if I could. If I could snap my fingers and just have one more night of shows  and maybe one more day, day in, not Cozumel, but nothing else is coming to mind, but like, else is coming to mind, but like,

[00:24:04]Dane Reis: [00:24:04] You don’t want to go to no name, 

[00:24:05] Gabriel Martinez: [00:24:05] Oh, no name it’s. I think, I think I’ve gotten all I can out of no name man

[00:24:10] enough. but enough bad. But yeah, it just it’s, there was periods of right after we left off, man. I’m so glad we got out and we’ll never go back. And that was only because we’d been there so long and the last contract was really tough and that quickly gave way to home. I got, I really miss it. God, I think. Are we going to go back?

[00:24:30] No, we’re not going to go back and. And over time, that’s mellowed out into a place where we can really look back on it and say, that was the coolest thing, man. And I’m so glad that we have those memories to reach for whenever we want them. And I think that’s a real blessing.

[00:24:45]Dane Reis: [00:24:45] for sure. And like you had said in the beginning, you said that really teaches you the nuts and bolts of performing and it’s not, it’s not just. Theory and talking about it and getting up in a musical theater class and practicing it a couple of times. It’s you getting paid every night, getting on stage, doing it in front of live audiences with different styles of shows again and again, and again, you get so many reps, you get to practice and hone things so much on

[00:25:09] ships.

[00:25:10] Gabriel Martinez: [00:25:10] many reps and you know, what, if you did tried something that didn’t work and even if you fell flat on , fell flat on your face, well, reset your costumes and touch up your makeup because you’re going on again in 45 minutes.

[00:25:20]Dane Reis: [00:25:20] exactly right. And I think that right there, you can make so much progress as a performer on ships. then I think probably in any market than I can really think of.

[00:25:29] Gabriel Martinez: [00:25:29] I think that if I had gotten super lucky right off the bat auditioning and like walked into an audition where I was exactly what they were looking for. And. Books, something that started a, some sort of stage career for me right off the right off the bat. I CA I can’t say that I ever would’ve gotten to where I think I am I am now, or well, little out of practice now, but where I was, um, , but where I was, um, at the, at the peak of my last contract practice, I don’t think I ever could have gotten there.

[00:25:55] And just in terms of being a honed focused, polished performer, who knows what to do and does it in an economical way and can do it and can do it again and again, and again. And I, I don’t know how I could have gotten that any place else, but cruise ships

[00:26:11]Dane Reis: [00:26:11] Yeah, totally agree with you. And let’s take a moment to talk about the present. What projects are you working on now? What are you looking forward to? And it’s a weird time. We’re a bit, it’s this global pandemic. How do you see the entertainment industry moving forward in the next couple of years?

[00:26:30]Gabriel Martinez: [00:26:30] I think that I definitely don’t have my ear to the ground in terms of where the industry is going, as much as some people I know, , much as some people I know, but, um, for me, um, we mentioned it at the top. I’ve recently tried to dive into a sort of film and television commercial.

[00:26:46] Career. I was lucky ,  enough to, uh, get a personal recommendation for an agent. Um, this summer, our mutual friend, Hannah Jane MacMurray was very instrumental in hooking that up for me. instrumental in hooking that up for me.

[00:26:55] And I’m so, I’m so lucky it went down like that. But I currently have this wonderful agent who’s constantly sending me self-tapes I got one.

[00:27:04] I literally got the notification about five minutes ago. So I’ll be self taping tomorrow. And. Right now I’m trying not to extrapolate too much off of that. The agents know what they’re doing. They’re going to send me the auditions. I’m going to do them. So hopefully there are some, there are some, you know, a national commercial or an episode of law and order or something like that coming through some time soon, I don’t think that my future necessarily lies in pure film acting, but if that’s one of, if that’s one of the tools in my belt that can keep me working and bringing some money from time to time, I think that’d be great. That’s what I’m focused mostly on now. However, in terms of projects , I’m working on now, uh, my wife and I are putting together a virtual benefit concert.

[00:27:49] That’s going up. going up. Oh, I guess. I guess it will have already happened by the time this comes out, but that’s all right.  You. I’m sure it will have gone. Well. Um, the last night of Hanukkah, which is also a week before Christmas, we are. Putting on a virtual benefit concert with some friends friends of ours. Uh, but the good news is it’ll be live, but the video will stay up and the link to donate will stay up.

[00:28:10] So whenever this comes out, head over to my wife’s YouTube channel because I have one too, but I don’t do anything on it. So I suppose, Dean, if you could drop that in the. Podcast description at some point that would be helpful. It’ll be It’ll be there. Um, I still don’t know what will entitle it yet, but I’m sure it’ll be on the front page of the YouTube channel.

[00:28:30] We have friends from all aspects of our career from all stages of , our career, uh, contributing with their favorite holiday songs. We’re doing it very old school. very old school. Like,  you know how, uh bublé and Harry Connick do it nowadays. Like a, an evening with friends, that sort of thing. I’m a very old school, , school, holiday benefit concert, and we will be donating all proceeds to the Marsha P Johnson ,  Institute, uh, which supports it defends the rights of black trans Americans. And this is a cause that we feel strongly about. there’s a. Obviously everyone has felt the impact of the pandemic, but none more so in terms of minority groups than the black trans community.

[00:29:15] So we are very happy to be partnering with Marsha P Johnson Institute and putting on this virtual benefit concert. We have everyone from Broadway stars to verified recording artists, submitting and Up and , Up andcomers, uh, people that we went to school with, we have a few recent alumnus alumni rather of Muellenberg college coming out and contributing.

[00:29:39] It’s going to be a very exciting and fun event. We’re hosting it all from our home. We’re singing a few songs, a few songs, so that’s kind of taking over. All of our energy right now. There’s been times when we’re like, Oh man, did we bite off more than we could chew? But I don’t think we have, I think it’s going to be great. So , Soyes, if you visit, uh, Emily Martinez on YouTube, you will find our video there. Like I said, it’ll be live on December 18th and that’s when the event is, but the video will stay up. And any donations we receive societally with that video will go to benefit the Marsha P Johnson.  

[00:30:13] Dane Reis: [00:30:13] amazing. So cool. I will absolutely have to

[00:30:17] tune in

[00:30:18] for that.

[00:30:18] Gabriel Martinez: [00:30:18] I think we, you probably have some, we probably have some mutual friends working on that one.

[00:30:23] Uh, I don’t want to give too much away, but we have a couple, we have a couple of good gets. We have some really good really good gets. Um, everyone’s really wonderful. We really, , We really, we really got the. The pick of all of our best, most talented friends this year, everyone’s going to be wonderful. We have some big names that people are going to be excited to see some Broadway folks, some a world-class recording artists.

[00:30:44] We’re so excited. It’s going to be so much hard work, but once but once it goes up, it’s going to be so, so great. So everyone please tune in for that.

[00:30:52]Dane Reis: [00:30:52] Very cool. And it is time to move on to one of my favorite sections in the interview. I call it the grease lightening round. I am going to ask you a handful of questions. I want you to answer them as quickly and concisely as possible one after another. Are you ready? 

[00:31:13]Gabriel Martinez: [00:31:13] I am ready.

[00:31:13] Let’s do it. 

[00:31:14] Dane Reis: [00:31:14] All right. First question. What was the one thing holding you back from committing to a career as an entertainer?

[00:31:19] Gabriel Martinez: [00:31:19] Uh, right off the bat, a tough one. , a tough one. Um, I’ve I’ve expounded on it, but I’ve kind of always known that I was going to have a career as a , going to have a career as a performer, but I will say that, um, the social media aspect is something that having come up as a performer when I was a kid and I’m still not quite. I’m S I’m still not quite very good at that.

[00:31:38] And I think a social media presence, I suppose it’s never too late, but I always have a really tough time with that. And that’s, I think that’s might be something that’s held me back , me back. and it’s still holding me back. But, uh, the, the relatively new to me, social media aspect of our industry is something that I have a real tough time with.

[00:31:56] And I think I really need to get on top of, we talked about it at the beginning. Didn’t we let our websites. 

[00:32:02] Dane Reis: [00:32:02] Yeah, Yeah, for sure. for sure. I mean social media and just the tech side, the digital side of being a professional entertainer is a real thing. As much as you might might hate it, it is what it is. , 

[00:32:14] Gabriel Martinez: [00:32:14] very daunting sometimes, but yeah, 

[00:32:17] we got to do it. 

[00:32:18] Dane Reis: [00:32:18] Beautiful. And the second question, what is the best piece of advice you have ever received?

[00:32:25]Gabriel Martinez: [00:32:25] Uh, when I was in college, I got to work with David Mason, Heimer, who , apart from being a Muellenberg ,  alumnus is, uh, he also played, uh, shove air on Broadway, forever, and ever, and getting to work with him was real thrilled. Cause I saw him on Broadway as you have air when I was a kid. And so when I worked with him, one of the first things he told me was Gabe, the only jobs I ever got that were worth getting I got, because someone knew me and knew that I was. Hardworking and good to work with and kind, and a nice person. And I have found the same to be true apart from a lucky break here and there. For the most part, all the meaningful work I’ve gotten is because somebody knows me and likes me. So it I’ve really taken that to heart. And I’ve tried with all my might to be as kind and easy to work with as possible in all my professional endeavors.

[00:33:12] Dane Reis: [00:33:12] Good such great advice. And I can relate the the vast vast majority of my career has come almost solely because of relationships and my work ethic and doing good work on a show and having integrity on a show. And then, you know what, I get a call saying, Hey, they’d like to see you like to see you for this  show.

[00:33:32] And I get to go and I get to go have a private audition, , 

[00:33:35] you know,

[00:33:35] Gabriel Martinez: [00:33:35] Oh gosh, that’s

[00:33:37] that’s

[00:33:37] Dane Reis: [00:33:37] and that, and that’s how it works. And that’s. It’s such a blessing to have

[00:33:40] that, you know, but

[00:33:42] Gabriel Martinez: [00:33:42] The other side, you know, we all know people that for whatever reason are not easy to work with and as talented as they may be, if it comes down between two people of equal qualifications and one’s easy to work with, and one’s not, you know exactly who the job is going.

[00:33:56] going.

[00:33:56] Dane Reis: [00:33:56] Hmm, for sure. A hundred percent. And the third question, what is something that is working for you right now? Or if you’d like to go pre COVID, what was working for you before our industry went on? Pause.

[00:34:10]Gabriel Martinez: [00:34:10] This may seem like a really obvious one, but for the first time in years, I’m taking voice lessons again. And again, it seems really obvious, but guys, I promise if you’re, if you’ve sung professionally for any length of time, you probably need voice lessons and it always helps to go back to basics, kick the tires.

[00:34:28] It really gets you in touch with your boys, even if you’re a more of a straight actor than a singer, getting in touch with your voice is. Something that’s so much  of us in the professional realm take for granted because you know, we’ve been doing it a long time. We don’t need voice lessons. Yeah, you do.

[00:34:44] We all need voice

[00:34:45] lessons. 

[00:34:46] Dane Reis: [00:34:46] yes. And the fourth question, what is your best resource? Whether that is a book, a movie, a YouTube video, maybe a podcast or piece of technology you’ve found is helping your career right now.

[00:34:58]Gabriel Martinez: [00:34:58] This is kind of a cheat because my agency does most of the work, but but actor’s access has been a really, really great resource. That’s where most of my where most of my auditions have been coming from. Um, I, again, super lucky that my agents take care of most of that, but highly recommend an actor’s recommend an actor’s access account. Um, I’ve been working with backstage and playbill for a long time.

[00:35:19] And they’re , long time.

[00:35:20] And they’re both really great, but, uh, particularly in terms in terms of commercial and film, actors, access has been a really, , access has been a really, really great, um, database and resource for finding meaningful work. Be it a commercial film, voiceover, there’s just a  , lot like that in a lot of, um, A lot of casting agencies will pull frompull from there first and kind of wish I’d gotten , a, an account long ago, but, um, I highly recommend it takes a bit of doing to get get your account up and running, but a lot, a lot of work goes through

[00:35:54] there. 

[00:35:55] Dane Reis: [00:35:55] yeah, brilliant. Such a good resource. And the fifth question, if you had to start your career from scratch, but you still had all the knowledge and experience you’ve collected from your career in this industry, what would you do or not do? Would you do anything differently or would you keep it the same? 

[00:36:12] Gabriel Martinez: [00:36:12] Aye. I keep it mostly the same, but, uh, I’m even gonna double dip on what I talked about before. I think if I had known in college and right after what a huge resource social media was going to be in an actor and a performer’s career,  I would have established a thriving social media media presence in so much as I was able ,  much, much earlier because now, uh, later in life it feels so much daunting and it feels like such an uphill uphill climb to at least establish, establish yourself to such a point where you feel like you’re not lagging behind.

[00:36:45] I think that’s probably the only one because I think the path of my career. Probably couldn’t have gone any different there’s no job. I wish I’d taken that. I didn’t or vice versa versa again. I think I’m very, very lucky for things to have gone the way they’ve gone. Yeah.

[00:37:00]Dane Reis: [00:37:00] , fantastic. And the last question, what is the golden nugget knowledge drop you’ve learned from your successful career in this industry? You’d like to leave with our listeners.

[00:37:12]Gabriel Martinez: [00:37:12] I’m sure everyone has some version of this, but whenever I get to have this conversation with someone who’s younger than me up and coming, just starting out, I always say, just, do you find your lane find your wheelhouse? I think so many young actors and performers spend so much time just like trimming the edges of their puzzle piece and like trying to jam themselves into somebody else’s.

[00:37:37]Box and a lot of colleges just trying to shape you into someone that can get into an audition room. And I think that a by-product of that is thinking that. Yep. Everyone’s got to look like this and every girl’s got to wear this dress and every guy’s got to have this haircut and you got to sing this song and you got to have a strong belt and aribbony falsetto, and you just have to, to do everything exactly this way.

[00:38:03] And I didn’t spend too much time too much time on that, but that’s that’s sometime that I wish I had back because when I started getting meaningful work is when I. Shaved my head and got some tattoos and was like, okay, I’m was like, okay, I’m just not going to be the classic leading man. That’s not, that’s not my lane. That’s not my box.

[00:38:22] And you don’t have to audition for every damn thing all the time. You don’t have to be out there every morning. Find the ones that speak to you. I suppose to a young performer it’s you’re still trying to find out what that is, but while you are, don’t kill yourself, trying to turn yourself into something you’re not, you are you and nobody else’s you find what’s find what’s good for you. and just try and try not to lose your joy.

[00:38:49]Dane Reis: [00:38:49] wonderful advice, everyone. Please rewind that and listen to that again. So good. Thank you, Gabe. And to wrap up this interview gay, but it’s time to give yourself a plug. Where can we find you? How do our listeners connect with you? Is there anything you want to promote? 

[00:39:06]Gabriel Martinez: [00:39:06] I am at Gabriel wings official on Instagram. I’m also there on Twitter, but I’m never on Twitter. Thus, my social  my social media struggles. , struggles. Um, I did, uh, I did the national tour for Peter and the star catcher years ago. And it was my first gig after a few years on cruise ships. And I remember showing up at the first day of rehearsal and somebody congratulated me on a good day.

[00:39:28] Audition. He was like, Oh man, you must have really done good because I know the other guy who was up for that role. And he has like has like 15,000 followers on Instagram or something. And I said, I said, what’s Instagram. So I’m finally having Instagram.  I’m trying to post and trying to be active. ,  Uh, mostly right now, all I can do is plug, uh, my wife’s YouTube channel because that’s where our next.

[00:39:48] Big project will be. I got nothing in the pot, but that we’re still just auditioning. we’re still just auditioning.We’ll see what happens.  Um, you can find me. Uh, on Facebook at gay Martinez. And at the beginning of quarantine, I was doing a lot of virtual concerts. And after the new year, I am resolved to get back to it again. So I will be doing those on Facebook.

[00:40:08] I found that to be a better platform than Instagram for live videos, just for my own preferences. So at Gabriel wings official on Instagram, just plain old gay Martinez. On , On Facebook and, uh, keep an eye out. I, one of my new year’s resolutions that’ll be my first one ever. Cause I don’t like new year’s resolutions, but I kinda need one this year.

[00:40:29] And it is to bolster my social media presence and try and really engage with people on the internet because it doesn’t look like things are going back to normal anytime soon. So needs, must, and I’m ready to do it really. Am I promise? I’m going to 

[00:40:45] do it. 

[00:40:46] Dane Reis: [00:40:46] Brilliant. And for everyone listening out there, I’ve put the links to everything. Gabe just said into the description of this episode, including his wife Emily’s YouTube page. So you can check that concert out and also be sure to share this podcast with your fellow entertainers, coaches, teachers, arts, and entertainment educators, and anyone.

[00:41:08] You know, aspiring to create a career in the entertainment industry. You booked. It is the number one resource of expertise on how to create a successful entertainment career. It’s integral to helping them succeed and helping you create a better, more fulfilling career in this insanely amazing industry.

[00:41:29] If you liked this episode, make sure you hit that subscribe button so you don’t miss the next one. Gabe. I am so glad we got connected. So glad Emily put us together. And, uh, thank you so much for being here. It’s been a pleasure.

[00:41:42]Gabriel Martinez: [00:41:42] Thank you so much for having me. This was a real treat. This podcast has been an automatic listen, every time it drops, I’ve missed a few because gosh, there’s so many of them 

[00:41:51] Dane Reis: [00:41:51] There are. 

[00:41:52] Gabriel Martinez: [00:41:52] man, but it’s been a real joy people that I know have been on it. People that I haven’t, no I’ve been on it.

[00:41:57] I try not to miss an episode. , episode. So thanks so much for doing this and, and, and creating this resource for 

[00:42:03] us. 

[00:42:04] Dane Reis: [00:42:04] Oh, thank you. It’s been a pleasure doing it