Rebbeca Marie Gomez, aka Becky G was 16 when she appeared on the scene with her sampled homage to Jennifer Lopez, “Becky From the Block.” In her case, the block was literally Inglewood, a neighborhood in South Central Los Angeles, and was figuratively, the hard times her family faced after she lost her house and had to move into a converted garage with her grandparents, which she raps about in the song. Well before her 2018 Spanish hit “Mayores” (which has a billion YouTube views), she was a Mexican-American teen prospect with praise from influential producer Dr. Luke and doing interviews that produced headlines like this: “How Becky G Had a Midlife Crisis at Nine and Hit With Pitbull By 17.” Indeed, Becky had been 9 when her parents went broke. So she realized early that she had to step up. By the time her next-level hit “Cant Get Enough” with Pitbull dropped in 2014, she had crafted a narrative with an anecdote letting everyone know that “mature for her age” doesn’t do her justice.
That her first break came with the J. Lo tribute, and an article in the L.A. Times saying how she wanted to emulate the singer, invites comparison. One glaring difference between the U.S.-born Latinas? Lopez gained fame and acclaim slowly through her mid-20s. While Becky G and everyone else on the planet should clearly admire J. Lo for her success and longevity, what’s increasingly notable about the superstar these days is that she’s still making sexy records at 50 (well, 49, her birthday is in July). Thanks to talent and social media, Becky G was a worldwide star at 17, approximately ten years younger than Jennifer Lopez was.
So how does someone with an adolescence spun by the spotlight, or the idea that maybe you peaked as a teen and could be a has-been at 25, or any of a million other negative thoughts? Especially with the exaggerated influence of online haters that come with fame, and especially when you’re someone who is self-critical.
“For me it’s anxiety. It’s pressure coming from myself, right? ’Cause I’m like my worst critic, right. They say you’re your own worst enemy, your own biggest competition. I’m really hard on myself, and I have pressure from the industry,” she tells CHICA.
We caught up with Becky G while she was in New York City to perform at Sony’s “Lost in Music” series (shockingly it was her first solo show in the city). We asked how she stays sane. Her honest answer, she’s still trying to figure it out:
She speaks like a self-aware 30-year-old. But it’s not enough for one to be grounded, as Becky undoubtably is.
Becky G knows her true fans are interested in the challenging parts of her life. She’s known since “Becky From the Block” that her fans want something real; they want to know about the hard times. This allows her to be vocal about her challenges and share the mechanisms she uses to deal with pressure and self-doubt.
Another way she channels her anxious thoughts, “Writing in a journal every single day.” And when she mentioned that she thought she was “on the right path” because she had “gotten help for it,” we asked what kind of help was she referring to?
The multiplatinum artist and movie star seems to relish these questions, and it’s a pity we don’t have more time because she is knowledgeable on this subject and wants to talk. But if you were concerned Becky G was going to burn out or battle a deep depression à la Demi Lovato, so is she. Thus she has developed healthy habits and ways of dealing that are instructive.
Becky G will turn 22 in March and her English-language January release “LBD” has nearly 300,000 views in three weeks. And she’s not even in the video for the super-sexy song.