Leyre Granda
Leyre Granda

The Pussycat Dolls have reunited after a decade apart and the success of their recent release “React” confirms two facts; fans were overjoyed about this occurrence and there is an evolution to the group’s musical identity. Leyre Granda of First Access Entertainment (Los Angeles) was instrumental in the manifestation of “React” as well as the reunion that accompanied it.

Her history of working with Nicole Scherzinger (lead vocalist and defacto leader of PCD) in addition to a number of other acclaimed artists at FAE (Zayn Malik, Sofia Carson, etc.) has led to Leyre’s reputation as an artist manager and A&R who is a “cut above” the rest in comprehending the ideal direction for music industry professionals.

Confirming that she is a Pussycat Dolls fan of more than twenty years, Leyre Granda has been a catalyst for the only two new releases from the group in a decade. With a full tour and (hopefully) more new music to come, The Pussycat Dolls are on the precipice of bringing a new generation of fans into the fold.  

Leyre Granda

Confident without hubris, Ms. Granda confirms that she knew what both artist and audience wanted from the Grammy-nominated/VMA Award-winning Pussycat Dolls in present day.

Leyre informs, “It had been ten years since the world had heard from one of the biggest girl bands of all time. Inevitably they had grown and evolved, just like their fans and the rest of the world, so when approaching this project, I would always ask myself, ‘What do The Pussycat Dolls sound like in 2020?’ The producers of ‘React’ produce a lot of K- Pop music which is definitely very current and young but the lyrics and message are definitely mature.”

“That is what made this record a great choice as a comeback single. It was a great challenge that I think we accomplished very well, to be able to give both the old fans and the new ones something to enjoy both sonically and visually. Very much adapting the brand and essence of the girl band to the current market, day and age, without trying too hard or not being truthful to their artist identity.”

She adds, “A lot changed within the industry during the ten years The Pussycat Dolls had spent apart. The power of streaming platforms and social media was something the girls (as a band) did not have to work with in the past. The pressure of having viral content and how the success of a record relies more in the artist these days.”

One vital aspect of the marketing and success of “React” were the remixes, also overseen by Leyre. These included: Afrobeat remix by Team Salut, LATAM remix/Brazilian funk remix by Pablo Vittar, and Club remix by Cash Cash. Working with a number of globally famous music artists for nearly a decade has informed Ms. Granda as to the optimal manner for approaching different fanbases. Leyre understood that these remixes would expand both existing and potential fan segments.

She imparts, “Without the support of a major record label behind this project, I understood the importance of remixes as a means of reaching different audiences, demographics, and territories. There were various approaches to this. I primarily researched the listenership of the Dolls on each respective streaming platform to identify the existing key markets and began reaching out to producers and DJ’s in those areas.”

“The next step was to review the tour and festival routing, exploring where it might be prudent to push the release. Finally, I took a deep dive into different genres of music that have exploded since the Dolls last released music, for example the streaming power of EDM or the growth of Latin and K-POP markets and began to plant seeds there too.”

 “React” was quantifiable as an instant hit, commanding the #1 spot on the iTunes Single Chart in the UK and #2 in the US, as well as placing in the Top 10 in multiple countries on release day. UK certified with +160 million streams, this single builds upon the excitement of last year’s The Pussycat dolls ft. on Meghan Trainor’s record “Genetics.” Leyre secured and coordinated this collaboration which was featured in the Netflix film Tall Girl.

Originally intended as a PCD single, it was Leyre’s suggestion that it be a Meghan release featuring The Pussycat Dolls as both stand by the same values and share very similar fanbases, benefiting both artists and their businesses. Ms. Granda attests to the important work of her associates at FAE in handling TV and press opportunities, contracts, and other aspects which allowed her to focus on the music for this reunion.

Having spent years working closely with Nicole Scherzinger, Leyre had a deep understanding of the vision for this iteration of The PCD and was enthusiastic about supporting the realization of it. She states, “My existing contacts, both internally within the First Access label eco-system and outside within the industry were excited about the prospect of this reunion and it meant that we were able to bring this project very quickly to fruition.”

Writer: Mike Winston

By Punit