How Old is Singer Rosalía and How Did She Become Famous?

Spanish singer Rosalía spent the last year making a name for herself on the international pop charts with “Malamente” and “Con Altura” becoming major crossover hits. But the Grammy winner is not a newcomer to the music scene.

Her debut album, Los Ángeles, dropped in 2017 and was followed up with a second studio project, El Mal Querer. With more than one dozen successful singles on the charts and rising popularity, fans want to know more about the singer-songwriter and her background.

Rosalia
Rosalía | Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images for The Recording Academy

How Rosalía got her start in music

Rosalía Vila Tobella is from a small town near Barcelona, Spain, and as a child, she studied music in school. During an interview with MTV Push, she said her parents gave her a guitar when she was nine years old.

Although she initially wanted to learn how to play to impress a boy, she developed her skills with genuine hard work and love for the instrument. It’s one of many she’s adept at playing.

By 16, she switched to the piano, and as a young teen worked on her stage presence. When she was 15, Rosalía auditioned for the Spanish reality competition show, Tú sí que vales, and sang a song with an acoustic guitar.

She didn’t fare well and was rejected by the judges, but she took the criticism in stride and used it as motivation. Fast forward and she’s now 26 years old with a burgeoning career.

Flamenco shapes Rosalía’s sound

Rosalía credits flamenco as a major influence on her musical style, naming Camarón de la Isla and La Niña de los Peines as artists who have impacted her. She is also a huge fan of James Blake, whom she collaborated with on “Barefoot in the Park.”

According to an interview with Fader, 13 was the age she took an interest in the art form that she first heard in the streets of Spain when out with friends.

She said, “From the beginning, I knew. I realized, this is my path.” Her college piano and vocal teacher, José Miguel Vizcaya, is an esteemed legend in the flamenco community and helped her hone her craft.

Rosalía started as a local act

While studying at university, she would do local performances in bars and at weddings around Spain to gain experience. After graduating with a degree in the flamenco arts, Rosalía joined forces with her sister Pili to spread her music and launch a brand.

Rosalía produced and recorded both of her albums herself, without the help of a label. Her talents caught fire in Spain and Sony Music signed her to a deal in 2018.

That was followed by a deal with Universal Music in 2019, per Variety. She’s now famous beyond Spain and counts Billie Eilish, Travis Scott, J Balvin, and C. Tangana as collaborators.

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She has a new album coming soon

These days, Rosalía is busy working on new music as she sits in quarantine and promises fans that there are unreleased tracks on the way with Travis Scott and Eilish. She told Zane Lowe she is writing and producing for the new album and is close to finishing the song with Eilish.

Rosalía is a fan of many artists including Frank Ocean, Björk, Madonna, and Destiny’s Child. One day, she hopes to work with Kanye West and some of the other musicians she admires.