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Bruno Mars' Ethnic Heritage: Exploring the Controversy Over His Afro-Latino Label Bruno Mars has become a phenomenon in the music industry, dominating the charts for years now with his unique blend of funk, pop, R&B and soul. But aside from his remarkable singing and dancing abilities, one question continues to boggle the minds of fans and music critics alike: what is his ethnic heritage? At first glance, it appears that Bruno Mars is of Puerto Rican and Filipino descent, which is why many classify him as an Afro-Latino. While Mars himself has not publicly commented on his heritage, his father is reported to be of African-American and Filipino descent, and his mother is believed to be of Puerto Rican descent. This evidence certainly appears to substantiate the Afro-Latino label. However, this label has sparked some controversy. Some argue that it oversimplifies Mars' complex heritage, and some even perceive it as an insult. They point out that it implies that Mars' black heritage is secondary to his Latin heritage, which is inaccurate and disrespectful to those of African descent. Moreover, because Mars himself has never identified as Afro-Latino, some feel that the label should not be applied to him. Ultimately, the question of Bruno Mars' heritage is a complicated one. And while there are many different opinions on whether or not he should be classified as an Afro-Latino, one thing is certain: his immense talent has taken the music industry by storm, regardless of his background. At five feet five inches tall, Bruno Mars' height and success in the music industry are proof that great things come in small packages.