Mexican singer-songwriter Alexander Acha may be a new face on the Billboard charts, but Latin music fans won't have to look very hard to find a close resemblance to his father, pop star Emmanuel.
The younger Acha, a pianist and alum of the Berklee College of Music, was introduced to audiences on tour with Emmanuel and duetted with him on the DVD of his father's wildly successful 2007 release "Retro en Vivo."
Alexander Acha's own debut, "Voy," quickly went gold in Mexico last summer. The album came out in the U.S. in December; single "Te Amo" went to No. 35 on Billboard's Latin Pop Airplay chart.
Time will tell if Acha's blip of stateside exposure will eventually develop into anything bigger this side of the border. Acha's schedule for February has him signing autographs in malls all over Mexico.
His first step towards establishing his own career may have been his choice of a label (Warner) different than that of his father (Universal). "They have supported me so much," he says of his label. "It was more the voice they gave me in making decisions about the different projects that I signed with them for." Artistically and professionally, "The only thing my dad has given me are good things. He's opened doors, he's helped me, he's supported me. The distinction between us will come more with time."
Acha's album, with touches of '80s and Italian pop (it was produced in Italy by Loris Ceroni), has found a mostly female audience that ranges from fans of his father to young women enchanted by his romantic vocals and good looks.
Acha, a devout Catholic, also hopes to write religious music someday, as well as contribute songs to other artists' albums. (He's got one on his father's latest album). "I've sent proposals to other artists that they haven't recorded yet, but it's something I'm very eager to do," says Acha. "I've always composed [songs], since I was a kid... in primary school I remember writing songs with my friends during recess," recalls Acha, a lifelong student at music academies.
"My composition has been maturing, I've been developing, advancing the harmonies, perfecting my melodies. And I think it's a process that never ends."