Bruno Mars reportedly decided to change his name so that record labels would stop stereotyping him as just another Latino singer.
Peter Hernandez, better known as Bruno Mars, is an American singer, musician, songwriter, dancer and record producer. He is known for his stage performances, retro showmanship, and for performing in a wide range of musical styles.
Hernandez reportedly changed his name to Bruno Mars to avoid being stereotyped as another Latino artist by the music industry. Changing your style, your name, or your sound is very common to those attempting to break into the entertainment industry. In the case of Hernandez, he opted to change his name rather than compromise his music and originality.
Mars was born and raised in Honolulu, Hawaii, where he had been performing and writing music for some time before moving to Los Angeles in 2003 to pursue a musical career. One of the first hurdles he encountered in LA was the fact that the music scene wanted him to be something that he was not. Mars claimed that people said to him, “Your last name is Hernandez, maybe you should do Latin music or Spanish Music… Enrique’s so hot right now.”
Despite taking some time to perfect his craft of songwriting, the talented musician had near-instant success when he released his first studio album. His songs took the number one spot on multiple charts and he managed to carve out success on his own terms.
Hernandez decided on the first name, Bruno, as it was a nickname given to him by his father, Pete Hernandez, when he was a baby. As for Mars, Hernandez claimed that he always teased that women he had been with thought he was “out of this world,” so he found it fitting to name himself something that would represent that.
Although he is known worldwide as Bruno Mars, Peter Hernandez is still his legal name.