From ‘Amandote’ to ‘12•19,’ JD Pantoja Opens Up About Chronicling His Personal Life in His Music Videos

JD Pantoja, "12•19"
Courtesy Photo

JD Pantoja, "12•19"

JD Pantoja (real name: Juan de Dios Pantoja) is a Mexican YouTuber-turned-music artist who’s marking territory in the biz with his urban-pop rhythms and melodious vocals. After teaming up with artists such as Noriel and Khea, Pantoja surprised fans with his latest production coined “12•19.”

The romantic lullaby, produced by Colombian hitmaker Ovy on the Drums, is an ode to his daughter Kima Sofia, who recently turned one year old on July 12. “You will always be the owner of my heart / there’s no one like you/you make me fall in love just by looking at me,” Pantoja expresses in the heartfelt lyrics.

An adorable music video, which dropped on Kima’s birthday and has over nine million views, shows Pantoja and his baby girl sharing quality time together. The music video even landed on YouTube’s trending charts.

Sharing personal family moments with his fans is not new for Pantoja. Last year, he and his partner Kimberly Loaiza documented her pregnancy and Kima’s birth in their collaboration “Amandote.”

In an exclusive interview with Billboard, rising Mexican artist JD Pantoja opened up about his new single "12•19" and why he chronicles his personal life in his videos.

What can you tell us about the meaning behind the song’s name?

Twelve is the day Kima was born and 19 is the year. She was born in 2019. My upcoming first album will include a lot of music about my personal life. This will be the introduction of who I am into the music industry. That’s why I decided to call it ‘Tiempo,’ because of the moments I have lived. There’s also a song with my daughter’s mom called ‘13 del 13,’ which represents the day we began dating, January 13, 2013. I decided to use the month and day for this song because that’s the idea I have for the songs on my album.

The video has a lot of heartwarming scenes with Kima. How was the experience recording with a toddler?

We just filmed this video about a week ago. It was something very spontaneous. We recorded all the shots in one day, that’s it! It was done quickly but it came from the heart. My daughter was comfortable and happy during the entire filming.

What’s the first thing that comes to mind when you realize that you’re trending on YouTube?

I get very excited and I’m very thankful for my fans, my internet family. I have fans of all ages. These are people who support my dreams and are always there to help me become a trending topic. I do stuff because it comes from the heart but my fans make me want to work harder.

Speaking of your fans. Why is it so important to share such intimate, personal moments in your videos, as we saw in “Amandote” and now?

I’ve got my fans used to know everything about my life. I share every achievement, every problem with them on social media. My fans and I are very connected. I love my daughter with all my heart and I know that my fans do too, they love seeing her. I chronicle these moments with those who have been there since the beginning since I began dating Kima’s mom until her birth. It’s nice to be able to share it with them.

How are you handling parenthood in the middle of a pandemic?

It’s very complicated but at the same time, very beautiful. I’m thankful to God for blessing me with this daughter. I’m very happy being a dad and having my family. As for the pandemic, I would’ve loved to have celebrated her birthday with her cousins and the entire family but because of everything that’s happening now, we did a small gathering. It was a beautiful celebration.

Working with Ovy on the Drums so early in your career is remarkable. How's that chemistry?

It’s incredible. We’ve been working together for a while now. We have a couple of more songs that haven’t been released yet. Honestly, working with him in a unique experience. He’s very talented and a great friend. He’s very humble and very hard working. It’s always been a goal of mine to work with him and thank God things happened organically. I feel very grateful to be working with producers of his caliber.

What can fans expect from you after “12•19”?

A lot of new music, without a doubt. I’m anxious to share all the songs that I’ve been recording for months. There’s also a lot of surprise collaborations on the way, many of which I always dreamed of.

JD Pantoja is the first artist signed to MPM Latin, a division of MPM Partners, in partnership with Universal Music Latin Entertainment. MPM Partners is co-founded by Luis C. Arellano, Eric O’Connor, and Dimitri Hurt.