Hometown musician competing to open ‘We Can Survive’ concert in Los Angeles
LAS CRUCES — A Las Cruces R&B/hip-hop artist and Oñate High alumnus is up for the chance to open a star-studded lineup at the Hollywood Bowl “We Can Survive” concert later this year.
Josh Perez, known professionally by his stage name Tremaine Praise, is originally from Tucson but moved around a lot as a kid. He has been a resident of Las Cruces since around 2005 and graduated from Oñate High in 2012. He attended New Mexico State University for a few years before joining the National Guard.
It wasn’t until he returned to Las Cruces from training that Perez said his interest in pursuing a career in music began – although music was always a “really good friend” to him. .
“I always had to be the new kid on the block or whatever, so I spent a lot of my first year or my first two months, however long I was in any city, kinda for me,” Perez said. “Music was an easy way for me to fill the time and help me be comfortable in my own skin. That way I could talk to others and try to be more social and things like that. So music has always been a big part, I guess, of how I work through my own emotions in life.
He said he started out performing covers of songs before embarking on the project of creating his own music. He has since released several singles. Many of his gigs have taken place in Arizona, although he hopes to increase his presence in New Mexico as he is still at least a part-time resident of Las Cruces. Local festivals, wineries, bars and other free shows made up the bulk of his gigs.
R&B and hip-hop are his main genres of concentration. However, Perez said he recently connected with other independent artists from the United States and Canada who are working on collaborative projects in the pop genre. And for fun, he also ventured into the country and rock genres.
In addition to working on these independent and collaborative projects, Perez is working to join festival lineups. Last year, he said he filled out a ton of applications for festivals that were filling out their music rosters for 2022. It wasn’t until late June 2022 that he heard from Audacy, formerly Radio .com.
On June 22, he received an email notifying him that he was considered a finalist for the opening competition for the company’s annual We Can Survive concert at the Hollywood Bowl in Los Angeles. The concert supports the “I’m Listening” initiative for mental health as well as the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention.
A few days later he was officially in the running and the competition started in July.
There are quite a number of artists participating in the first round. Audience members are invited to vote for their favorite artists online at theopenact.com. Voting for the top 20 artists lasts until July 21 at 7 p.m. MST.
From there, the group will be further reduced in the ballots until there is a final four. The grand prize winner will have the chance to open the concert and get several tickets for themselves and their guests. They will also win $10,000. The other three in the top four will receive tickets to the concert but will not perform.
Perez said if he wins, the Hollywood Bowl will be his biggest milestone by far. The exposure he will get as an artist will be unmatched. And he plans to donate the majority of the money to local programs to encourage more kids to get involved in music.
“The things I get the most out of are really my own life or situations or circumstances that happen to me or people close to me, sort of leaning into real feelings. So recently there’s been a lot of kind of love music/dealing with the loss of love,” he said. “I usually tend to tap into the emotions that we all feel, just because I know that’s the kind of music I’ve always been in touch with – music with a message or music that relates .”
The full musical lineup for the concert will be announced on August 1. Past concerts have featured headliners such as Lizzo, Billie Eilish, the Black Eyed Peas, Doja Cat, Kid Laroi, Shawn Mendes and more.
People can vote for Perez once a day online at theopenact.com/2022/tremaine-praise. His music can also be found on Spotify, Apple Music and other leading music platforms under Tremaine Praise.
He said he was working on releasing an EP of collective works next year and several more singles later this year.