Interview with the “Voice of New York” Angie Martinez

“The Voice of New York” herself, Angie Martinez, the radio personality of Hot 97 and The Angie Martinez Show is well-known around the city of New York for her insight on the Hip Hop community. had an opportunity to speak with Angie Martinez about how her love of Hip Hop began. Martinez also opens up about what inspires her and who is left on her list of great people that she would like to speak with on her show. Can you tell me how you began your career in radio?
Angie: I got an internship when I was 16. I lived in Miami for a couple of years. My mother moved me there when I was a kid. She moved me there from 16-18. I got an internship with the radio station out there, Power 96. When I moved back to New York at 18, I did an internship at Hot 97 and been there every since.
TCC: It sounds like you had a great start!
Angie: It’s like I grew up at Hot 97.
TCC: You have been appearing on the reality television show, Empire Girls: Julissa and Adrienne along with the stars of the show Julissa and Adrienne. How do you feel about the current representation of Latin women on television and reality television shows?
Angie: One of the things that appeal to me about this show is that it is a positive representation. It’s two young girls trying to find their way and they have great families and great friends. There is nothing negative about who they are and what they’re trying to do. It’s an amazing representation of young Latin women. You know everyone gets stereotyped and you know sometimes stereotypes are annoying today.
TCC: Of course.
Angie: So it’s nice to have a little more diversity, you know what I mean? Not every Latin woman says ‘mami’ and ‘papi,’ and wears tight dresses. It’s nice to see different variations of what we are.
TCC: It is definitely good to see a nice variety!
TCC: You have interviewed quite a bit of celebrities from The Kardashians to Nicki Minaj. Is there anyone left in the Hip Hop community that you would like to interview next and why?
Angie: I think I’ve probably interviewed every single person in the Hip Hop community. I mean, there are people outside of the Hip Hop community that I haven’t interviewed, but within the Hip Hop community, I don’t think there is anyone that has not come to see me.
TCC: Who outside of the Hip Hop community, do you have a big interest in interviewing?
Angie: Probably my dream would be to interview Oprah. She’s the only person left on my list that I haven’t gotten to yet. I think that’s the only person left. I’ve really been lucky! I’ve even interviewed Barack Obama…
TCC: Why are you drawn to Oprah?
Angie: Just for one, She’s Oprah Winfrey! Just for me personally, what I do for a living, I’m truly inspired by her. I mean the woman has changed the world, literally. How many people can say that? I would just like to have a conversation with her, in general. I’m sure plenty of people in the world would! I did get close to her though. I got Gayle!
TCC: You’re getting one step closer! Was it a great interview?
Angie: It really was! She likes Hip Hop so we were talking about Jay-Z… we were talking about music.
TCC: What advice can you give young women fresh out of college, who are looking to become entrepreneurs and aspire to make a difference in this world?
Angie: I think it’s important to find what you love. Life is so short. Life is too short to work hard at something you don’t love. And the only way you are going to be successful is if you work hard. It’s like the best choice in life to find something to do that you love. It makes for a better quality life. Also, know your craft and then go for it!
TCC: Back to music! What was the first Hip Hop track that inspired you?
Angie: Geez… that’s hard to say. I don’t remember the first song but I remember the first piece of music I bought with my own money, Slick Rick and Doug E. Fresh, La-Di-Da-Di, flip side with The Show. I remember I was a little kid peaking into my aunt’s house party. I was like a little kid in my pajamas. I thought it was the cutest thing. It’s been a part of my life forever.
TCC: And I bet it’s still growing… like your falling in love every time you hear a new song.
Angie: I do! I mean, I don’t love everything, but I do still love the culture and there are still artists that come out that I appreciate.
TCC: Do you feel like there’s been a change in the way Hip Hop is today? Do you wish Hip Hop was how it used to be?
Angie: Well, nothing can be like it used to be, not music, not food, not the world. It’s evolution! Everything evolves. Hip Hop was great in the 80s, it was great in the 90s. Some people liked it better in the 80s and some people liked it better in the 90s. It’s just a constant evolution. I don’t think one is better that the other. You know, we’re all different now. Social media and the way in which people get music have changed. When Hip Hop first started, you used to have to work for it. You used to have to stay up late to listen to the radio on a Friday night because that’s the only time they played it! It was a culture that used to have to work to get it. Now it’s like, you punch something into a computer and you can have an artist’s whole new album in a couple of minutes. By the next month, people are over it.
TCC: The music industry does go by a lot faster now.
Angie: Being invested in an artist, that part I do miss. Now I feel like everything happens so fast that it’s “on to the next… on to the next…”
TCC: If you were to create a playlist right now, what songs would be on your list? Whether you are going to the gym or out with your girls, what songs would you want to listen to today?
Angie: Oh my God, that’s so hard, because it depends on my mood.
TCC: So what mood are you in today? What do you want to hear?
Angie: I always go back to the El Cantante soundtrack. That’s my go-to soundtrack. Right now I’m listening to the Nas album, the Rick Ross Album. Honestly, I still have the Adele album in my car. That’s about it so far.
TCC: Angie, I would like to thank you for speaking with me today!
Angie: Thank You!