Xenia Rubinos

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Xenia Rubinos
Xenia Rubinos performing at The Haunt in Ithaca, NY, 2017
Background information
Birth nameXenia Rubinos
Born (1985-07-24) July 24, 1985 (age 34)
OriginHartford, Connecticut, United States
GenresFunk-rock, R&B, jazz-funk
Occupation(s)Musician, songwriter, record producer
Years active2013–present
Associated actsSammus, Marco Buccelli, Olga Bell

Xenia Rubinos (born July 24, 1985) is an American singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist.

Background and early life[edit]

Xenia Rubinos was born in Hartford, CT in 1985 to a Puerto Rican mother and a Cuban father.[1] She studied jazz composition at the Berklee College of Music.[2] She spent most of her 20s acting as the primary caregiver for her father as he dealt with a degenerative illness, which inspired her song "Black Stars."[3]


Her early music influences include composers like Prokofiev and Ravel,[4] as Xenia’s father was a fan of classical music and opera.[3] Salsa, rumba and merengue, including releases by Fania Records, were popular in her house while growing up.[4][5] Later, she became enthralled with hip-hop, R&B and Miles Davis in particular, which led her to study jazz at the Berklee College of Music.

She is inspired by her Latin American heritage and Santería practices.[6] She is also inspired by the Black Lives Matter movement, [3] but does not see her music as protest music, which is too narrow of a view. The topics of her songs include her experience as a woman of color, which should start a conversation and not restrict how people view her music.[1]

Xenia's music is not easily categorized as she crosses many genres in both her lyrics and her sound, making categorization of her music difficult.[1][6][7][8]

She has lived in Brooklyn since 2006.


  • 2013 - Magic Trix (EP, self-released)
  • 2016 - Black Terry Cat (NuBlack Music Group)


  1. ^ a b c Snapes, Laura (October 24, 2016). "Xenia Rubinos: 'I'm saying things about being a brown girl in America'". The Guardian.
  2. ^ "Articulate: Xenia Rubinos". PBS.
  3. ^ a b c "In 'Black Stars,' Xenia Rubinos Memorializes Many Lives In One". NPR. July 3, 2016.
  4. ^ a b Raygoza, Isabela (May 31, 2016). "Unboxed: Genre-Hopping with Xenia Rubinos". The Village Voice.
  5. ^ Brown, Helen (June 17, 2016). "Xenia Rubinos, Black Terry Cat, review: 'the sound of the summer'". The Telegraph. Retrieved May 2, 2019.
  6. ^ a b Martin, Rachel (April 23, 2013). "Xenia Rubinos: Adventures in Syncopation". NPR.
  7. ^ Grier, Chaka (July 13, 2016). "Album Review Black Terry Cat". Now Toronto.
  8. ^ Snapes, Laura (May 24, 2013). "Magic Trix Review". Pitchfork.

External links[edit]