Rolling Afro-Latin Music 2019: Reggaeton, Salsa, Bomba, Latin Jazz, Bachata, Merengue, and more

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Can anyone tell me about the Latin pop group Reik? Looks like they’ve maybe been around for a bit

Heez, Monday, 24 June 2019 14:15 (eleven months ago) link

mainstream radio has zero interest in latin music, even bona fide smashes, unless it's going to benefit one of their already-established anglophone stars, who are assumed to be the ones who'll be sticking around at their formats. latin music and its stars are then still treated as passing fads, and the possibility that they will only continue to grow in influence from here seems to have barely occurred to these segments of the media.

Gary's point about streams not being counted equally is the big takeaway from that article. What I'd like to know, and which would go more toward your point, is how many listeners the big Spanish-language radio stations in the US have vs. their pop radio counterparts - like, how many people are listening to (in the NY market) Z100 and how many people are listening to La Mega? Because if these artists are getting billions of YouTube streams, and millions of Spotify and other streams, and significant radio airplay on Latin stations, what do they need recognition from the "mainstream" for anyway? There's no such thing as the "mainstream" anyhow. It's niche vs. niche, so when (for example) the producers of the Fast & Furious movies cast Don Omar and Tego Calderón as comic sidekicks, it wasn't outreach so much as recognizing that those two were already stars in an audience segment that was also watching F&F movies. So let white radio ignore Spanish-language music. The audience will find it - indeed, the audience already knows where to look for it.

Not everything is for everyone.

shared unit of analysis (unperson), Monday, 24 June 2019 15:24 (eleven months ago) link

i mean, sure. but the thing is that white radio, and the segments of the industry that feed it, are not entirely ignoring latin hits -- some, like "mi gente" or most obviously "despacito", simply get too big to ignore, at which point they'll bite. but so far an established anglophone star, even one who is struggling in her supposed main genre, has to come along for the ride.

it's not 100% a bad thing! from an artistic standpoint, i actually admire the romeo santos approach to crossover -- bring in some 'mainstream' guests occasionally, but otherwise let that audience find you, come to you and accept what you're bringing as it already is -- compared to, like, prince royce's attempt to break top 40 airwaves with a lousy rehash of a 112 song from the turn of the century.

i would agree that today especially the landscape is very niche vs. niche. on some level it's always been like that, but with a lot of music sort of filling in the blurrier boundaries. today the boundaries are starker, and where overlap has strengthened it's tended to be along racial lines: rhythmic and urban stations on one side; top 40, adult and alternative stations on the other. where crossover opportunities exist, fewer seem to want to take them (cf that cumulus exec quoted in another thread saying that urban music not crossing over is seen as helping urban stations nowadays), and when they do go for it, it's hard to go the full distance.

the pendulum is swinging, i think, but many top 40 stations are still devoting significant blocks of their playlists to songs that don't sell, don't stream, and don't test well just because they 'sound' (and look) like 'pop'. (ironically, for reasons related to the nature of promotion and audience research, a lot of these songs end up taking up space for an unusually long time before the gatekeepers finally give up on them.)

like, if so many stations are struggling to stack their (lately, small!) playlists with actual new hits instead of just rotating the same holdovers from several months prior every rush hour, maybe they should try playing a little more latin music!

idk. maybe i'm naive or just have rose-colored glasses on, but sometimes i miss times when i could turn the radio on and the various niches played with each other just enough that i could at least believe in the illusion that we all live in the same world.

dyl, Monday, 24 June 2019 21:52 (eleven months ago) link

idk. maybe i'm naive or just have rose-colored glasses on, but sometimes i miss times when i could turn the radio on and the various niches played with each other just enough that i could at least believe in the illusion that we all live in the same world.

Yeah, I pretty much stopped listening to the radio when I was about 14, except for the metal station that I left on when I worked in a big empty warehouse, and occasionally a classical station in the car. It's not the way I choose to consume music at all, and I don't understand why people cling to it — it seems to me like the equivalent of still making phone calls on a land line, or something.

shared unit of analysis (unperson), Monday, 24 June 2019 22:35 (eleven months ago) link

pretty fair/smart!

like, how many people are listening to (in the NY market) Z100 and how many people are listening to La Mega?

btw i was actually curious about this and decided to look some publicly available numbers up and do at least a very approximate back-of-napkin calculation. i couldn't find numbers for la mega in new york, so looking instead at los angeles, the audience of its big pop station (kiis) is probably between 2 and 3 times as large as that of its contemporary latin station kxol. the latin station's audience is probably similar to those of other stations in the area with alternative (kroq), rhythmic (kpwr), country (kkgo), and urban contemporary (krrl) formats.

of course los angeles is not representative of the whole country and interest in latin music is going to vary regionally. interestingly, nationwide one of the most listened-to formats is regional mexican, with an audience share of about 5% (compared to 10% for pop, 8.5% for country, and 8% for adult contemporary). but the styles played at that format (banda, etc.) read as old-fashioned and would never fly at mainstream top 40, in the same way that christian and country radio hits seldom do.

dyl, Monday, 24 June 2019 23:00 (eleven months ago) link

Separate worlds largely here in the DC area. Latinx music from any genre gets very little English language press/website coverage from those who cover English language music

curmudgeon, Wednesday, 26 June 2019 16:56 (eleven months ago) link

New J. Balvin w/ Bad Buny album didn't wow me on first listen. I like J. Balvin's pop side and that seemed less noticeable at first here

curmudgeon, Sunday, 30 June 2019 21:45 (ten months ago) link

This one though:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HcwEyLhwL54

J Balvin x Bad Bunny ft. Mr Eazi • Como Un Bebé

breastcrawl, Monday, 1 July 2019 10:35 (ten months ago) link

That sounds good. I need to listen to the whole album again too.

curmudgeon, Tuesday, 2 July 2019 02:36 (ten months ago) link

three weeks pass...

https://remezcla.com/lists/music/puerto-rico-protest-music-essential-against-corruption/

Puerto Rican protest songs in various genres from Bad Bunny, Residente, ILe, Ricky Martin, La India, PJ Sin Suela

curmudgeon, Wednesday, 24 July 2019 03:46 (ten months ago) link

“All day, the drums and the chants had blared through the streets outside La Fortaleza, the governor’s residence in San Juan, the Puerto Rican capital.

But just before midnight on Wednesday, a silence fell over the crowd.”...

Some loud cursing, as he spoke at length about his accomplishments as governor.

Then, the sound of exultation pierced through the crowd: “RENUNCIÓ!”

A flurry of Puerto Rican flags flew into the air, strangers clasped arms and friends began jumping in circles, singing “¡Oé! ¡Oé! ¡Oé!” Cars from all over the city began to honk and, as people danced, fireworks erupted overhead....Throughout the night, the celebrations took on the feel of a music festival in parts of the old city, as some motorists blasted music from their car stereos. Some street corners resembled spontaneous dance parties as protesters celebrated the shift in Puerto Rico’s politics...But what would happen in the coming days remained unclear. Mr. Rosselló said his resignation would not take effect until Aug. 2, and many have already said his possible successor, Wanda Vázquez, is not a suitable replacement.

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/07/25/us/san-juan-celebration.html?smid=nytcore-ios-share

curmudgeon, Thursday, 25 July 2019 13:17 (ten months ago) link

After Roselló’s resignation, people on social media said: “El Perreo ganó” (perreo won) and “Sin Perreo No Hay Revolución” (There’s no Revolution Without Perreo), pointing to reggaetón’s dance as the knockout blow to the corrupt governor.

Yes, some of these comments were tongue-in-cheek, playing on the irony of music that arose from black and low-income communities unseating the highest elected official in Puerto Rico. But they were also tapping into the longer history of reggaeton and perreo, forms that have always been political. Through reggaeton, Puerto Ricans have expressed political critique, resisted state censorship and criminalization, defied racism and misogyny — and now fueled collective action...

Prominent reggaeton and trap artists frequently joined demonstrators in the streets during the protests. Residente, iLe and Bad Bunny, in particular, alongside pop star Ricky Martin, played a vital role in amplifying the call of the Colectiva Feminista en Construcción for the National Strike on July 18, one of the largest demonstrations to take place in Puerto Rico’s history. In addition to the presence of artists at the protests, people also used reggaeton lyrics as chants. For instance, demonstrators frequently used a popular line from “En la Cama,” Daddy Yankee’s 2001 hit featuring Nicky Jam to call for Rosselló’s resignation. When a protester shouted “Yo quiero la combi completa” (I want the whole combination), which in the original makes reference to the various parts of a woman’s body, the crowd chanted in response “Qué? Ricky renuncia, puñeta!” (What? Ricky, resign, damnit!).

La Colectiva Feminista en Construcción, the feminist collective that initiated the protests in La Fortaleza, organize a yearly celebration “Si no puedo perrear, no es mi revolución” (If I can’t dance reggaeton, it’s not my revolution).

curmudgeon, Saturday, 3 August 2019 01:28 (nine months ago) link

Te Bote-- I dumped you, threw you out of my life --Te Boté Remix - Casper Nio García Darell Nicky Jam Bad Bunny Ozuna

This song got a new meaning with the protests against the now former governor

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ymBTbyQXE2c

curmudgeon, Saturday, 3 August 2019 01:39 (nine months ago) link

Billboard Hot Latin Tracks

Otro Trago
Sech Featuring Darell

Songwriter(s):
C.I.Morales Williams, O.E.Castro Hernandez, J.Vasquez Valdes, J.J.Mendez
Producer(s):
Dimelo Flow
Imprint/Promotion Label:
Rich
2
Anuel AA, Daddy Yankee, Karol G, Ozuna & J Balvin
Songwriter(s):
E.Gazmey Santiago, J.C.Ozuna Rosado, V.Saavedra, Karol G, R.L.ayala Rodriguez, J.A.Osorio Balvin, M.E.Masis Fernandez
Producer(s):
Tainy
Imprint/Promotion Label:
Real Hasta La Muerte

3
Daddy Yankee & Katy Perry Featuring Snow Con Calma
Con Calma

Songwriter(s):
R.L.ayala Rodriguez, J.G.Rivera Vazquez, D.K.O'Brien
Producer(s):
Play-N-Skillz, Scott Summers
Imprint/Promotion Label:
UMLE | El Cartel
4
Bad Bunny & Tainy Callaita
Callaita

Songwriter(s):
B.A.Martinez Ocasio, F.G.Ortiz Torres
Producer(s):
Tainy, F.Saldana, Tunes
Imprint/Promotion Label:
Rimas
5
Lunay, Daddy Yankee & Bad Bunny Soltera

Songwriter(s):
J.Osorio Moreno, R.L.ayala Rodriguez, B.A.Martinez Ocasio, J.G.Rivera Vazquez, C.E.Ortiz Rivera, L.C.E.Ortiz Rivera, N.K.Segarra, J.Echevarria, N.K.Assad
Producer(s):
Chris Jeday, Gaby Music, N.K.Segarra, Dulce Como Candy
Imprint/Promotion Label:
Star Island

6
Jhay Cortez, J Balvin & Bad Bunny No Me Conoce

curmudgeon, Friday, 9 August 2019 03:42 (nine months ago) link

two weeks pass...

enjoying this second iLe album, almadura:

https://www.kexp.org/read/2019/6/27/calle-13-ile-hurricane-maria-solo-album-almadura/

it seems so lucid

j., Friday, 23 August 2019 03:48 (nine months ago) link

I need to listen to it more. Checked it out quickly at first

curmudgeon, Friday, 23 August 2019 15:44 (nine months ago) link

Several Latinx music critics on twitter are grumbling that Otro Trago
Sech Featuring Darell

Is not getting the crossover media attention it and he deserves despite being number #1 for awhile , but European Rosalia can just say hello and get lotsa love and attention as an artiste

curmudgeon, Thursday, 29 August 2019 14:40 (eight months ago) link

Sech is Afro-Panamanian

curmudgeon, Thursday, 29 August 2019 14:41 (eight months ago) link

it's that pitchfork magic

still got it!!!!!

j., Thursday, 29 August 2019 14:44 (eight months ago) link

It’s a banger alright. I’m especially fond of the remix:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MaCnp-yB-Yc
Sech ft. Darell, Nicky Jam, Ozuna & Anuel AA • Otro Trago (Remix)

breastcrawl, Thursday, 29 August 2019 16:16 (eight months ago) link

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/08/27/arts/music/dembow-rhythm-drake-justin-bieber.html

Dembow rhythm history w/ a Spotify playlist

curmudgeon, Friday, 30 August 2019 18:54 (eight months ago) link

X-post — Yeah that Otro Trago Remix is nice

curmudgeon, Saturday, 31 August 2019 16:10 (eight months ago) link

I also love this one:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a76lWh5yJCU
Ceasese ft. Polimá Westcoast & Young Cister • Te quiero ver

breastcrawl, Saturday, 31 August 2019 16:49 (eight months ago) link

There's an interesting digital-only compilation out from Craft Recordings:

V/A - Fania Goes Psychedelic

01. Ray Barretto – Acid (5:07)
02. The Lebron Brothers Orchestra – Let’s Get Stoned (2:49)
03. Johnny Colon & Orchestra – Boogaloo Blues (6:53)
04. The Latin Blues Band – Take A Trip (4:53)
05. George Guzman – Banana Freak Out (3:43)
06. The Harvey Averne Band – Got To Have Brotherhood (2:57)
07. Pete Rodriguez – Oh That’s Nice (4:50)
08. Larry Harlow – Freak Off (3:30)
09. Joey Pastrana – Problems (7:15)
10. Eddie Palmieri – Revolt / La Libertad Lógico (5:25)
11. Ray Barretto – Power (6:08)
12. Bobby Valentín – Use It Before You Loose It (3:02)
13. The Lebron Brothers Orchestra – Summertime Blues (4:44)
14. Jimmy Sabater – Kool It Here Comes The Fuzz (3:14)
15. Flash And The Dynamics – Electric Latin Soul (3:16)

Track 1 originally released on Acid, Fania Records LP SLP 346, 1968.
Track 2 originally released on The Brooklyn Bums, Cotique LP C 1015, 1968.
Track 3 originally released on Boogaloo Blues, Cotique LP C 1004, 1967.
Track 4 originally released on Take A Trip Pussycat, Speed Records LP SS 101, 1968.
Track 5 originally released on Introducing George Guzman, Fania Records LP 348, 1968.
Track 6 originally released on Brotherhood, Fania Records LP 379, 1969.
Track 7 originally released on Oh, That’s Nice! (Ay, que bueno!), Alegre Records LP LPA 860, 1967.
Track 8 originally released as Orchestra Harlow on Harlow’s Harem, Fania Records LP SLP 408, 1972.
Track 9 originally released on Hot Pastrana, Cotique LP C 1025, 1968.
Track 10 originally released on Vamonos pa’l monte, Tico Records LP 1224, 1971.
Track 11 originally released on Barretto Power, Fania Records LP 397, 1970.
Track 12 originally released on Let’s Turn On / Arrebatarnos, Fania Records LP 343, 1968.
Track 13 originally released on Psychedelic Goes Latin, Cotique LP C 1008, 1967.
Track 14 originally released as “Kool It” on El hijo de Teresa / Teresa’s Son, Tico Records LP 1211, 1970.
Track 15 originally released on The New York Sound, Tico Records LP 1233, 1971.

shared unit of analysis (unperson), Sunday, 8 September 2019 15:49 (eight months ago) link

That does look interesting

curmudgeon, Monday, 9 September 2019 15:50 (eight months ago) link

There are some great cuts on that J Balvin & Bad Bunny album. Was re-listening to it.

curmudgeon, Wednesday, 11 September 2019 13:30 (eight months ago) link

^^^ true words!

Más más más:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JmeyoMooJPY
Tini ft. Lalo Ebratt • Fresa

Some things I like about this song:
•it features Lalo Ebratt
•it’s informed by Afropop (lesson 1: “One Dance”)
•its subject matter is delicious
•it features Lalo Ebratt

breastcrawl, Wednesday, 18 September 2019 07:38 (eight months ago) link

Saw J Balvin live last night. Fun show. A big production with a set that had a giant bleachers section with a cartoonlike character ( video game meets Hello Kitty meets anime) on it; videos airing behind the set (in a Nam June Paik way), reggaeton dancers in everyday clothes as well as some in cartoon meets videogame costumes; strobe lights and other flashy lighting... On some songs like “La Cancion” there was less going on— just Balvin’s voice, his drummer, guitarist, and keyboard player/ backup vocalist

curmudgeon, Friday, 27 September 2019 14:51 (seven months ago) link

two weeks pass...

Missed bad boy heartthrob Maluma in town recently. He’s not bad

curmudgeon, Tuesday, 15 October 2019 13:05 (seven months ago) link

(no) pun intended?

The guys have a song together:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Geyg_F5pfHE
Maluma ft. J Balvin • Qué Pena

Quite nice, but not really the showstopper it should have been

breastcrawl, Tuesday, 15 October 2019 13:26 (seven months ago) link

Ha re pun. Yes not the showstopper it could have been

curmudgeon, Tuesday, 15 October 2019 16:20 (seven months ago) link

Pedro Capó w/ Farruko song Calma has become a favorite of Nats baseball players after a win

https://www.washingtonpost.com/arts-entertainment/2019/10/22/magic-calma-reggaeton-hit-that-became-washington-nationals-celebration-anthem/

curmudgeon, Thursday, 24 October 2019 01:03 (seven months ago) link

I like Bad Bunny’s shoutouts to salsa and reggaeton acts in the sentimental “Desde el Corazon.” Good video too

https://lyricstranslate.com/en/desde-el-coraz%C3%B3n-heart.html

curmudgeon, Thursday, 24 October 2019 15:17 (seven months ago) link

That’s a 2018 song I think

https://youtu.be/7LZIrKG2EPE

curmudgeon, Friday, 25 October 2019 16:46 (seven months ago) link

Saxophonist, composer, arranger, orchestra leader and educator Ray Santos became widely known in the 1990s for arranging the Oscar-nominated theme song for the movie The Mambo Kings. The Julliard-trained Nuyorican musician, who died on Thursday (Oct. 17) at age 90, was himself a mambo king.

Santos started out playing Latin big band music at resorts in upstate New York's Catskills, and performed with Machito’s orchestra at New York's city's Palladium in the 1950s. Over his long career he collaborated with Eddie Palmieri, Tito Puente, Tito Rodríguez, Paquito D’Rivera and many others.

He won a Grammy award with Linda Ronstadt for her 1992 album Frenesí. Recently, he had arranged Jon Secada’s 2017 album tribute to Beny Moré, To Beny Moré With Love -- Santos had previously worked with the great Cuban musician himself.

https://www.billboard.com/articles/columns/latin/8533458/ray-santos-dead-latin-music-maestro-dies

curmudgeon, Saturday, 26 October 2019 16:31 (seven months ago) link

two weeks pass...

Chilean singer Mon Laferte staged a protest at last night's Latin Grammys. Photo is NSFW, so search it up for yourself, but she wrote the words "En Chile Torturan Violan Y Matan" on her chest and dropped her top on the red carpet. (She later won Best Alternative Album.)

shared unit of analysis (unperson), Friday, 15 November 2019 14:16 (six months ago) link

She’s got a new political song out too, I read. It’s with Puerto Rican Guaynaa.

curmudgeon, Saturday, 16 November 2019 05:28 (six months ago) link

Rosalia won Latin Grammys album of the year; Pedro Capo -"Calma" song of the year (the remix w/ Farruko also won an award); Bad Bunny got best Urban album; J Balvin & Rosalia best urban song for "Con Altura"; best salsa album was Tony Succar- Mas De Mi; Andres Cepeda got best traditional tropical album; Chucho Valdes -Jazz Bata 2 got best Latin Jazz

https://www.billboard.com/articles/columns/latin/8543699/latin-grammys-2019-winners-list

curmudgeon, Saturday, 16 November 2019 05:48 (six months ago) link

Tensions Over Genres and Generations Linger at Latin Grammys
The Spanish pop avant-gardist Rosalía was a big winner at the ceremony, where reggaeton and Latin trap artists were snubbed in the major categories.

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/11/15/arts/music/latin-grammys.html

curmudgeon, Saturday, 16 November 2019 05:55 (six months ago) link

Bad Bunny did "Callaita" with an orchestra . Video link in Rolling Stone story

https://www.rollingstone.com/music/music-latin/bad-bunny-performs-callaita-latin-grammys-913070/

curmudgeon, Saturday, 16 November 2019 06:00 (six months ago) link

https://www.rollingstone.com/music/music-latin/reggaeton-latin-grammys-progress-bad-bunny-j-balvin-912872/

J Balvin and some others did not go to the awards.

“There is a history that dates back many years where our genre has been denigrated,” Balvin explained. “I don’t agree with [the Academy] using us for ratings,” he added. “And then [us] not going home with what we deserve.”

Fellow superstar and frequent collaborator Bad Bunny echoed Balvin’s words in the press room following Thursday’s Grammys ceremony. “There are people who [must] accept that reggaeton is a genre that has been going for more than two decades,” Bad Bunny said pointedly. “Whether you like it or not … we are [the ones] representing Latinos worldwide.”...

curmudgeon, Saturday, 16 November 2019 06:05 (six months ago) link

Folks mad on twitter that Sech’s “Otro Trago” didn’t win a song award and lost to European Spaniard Rosalía

curmudgeon, Saturday, 16 November 2019 18:14 (six months ago) link

I listened to that Sech song today. It's bad. Well, it's generic pop-reggaeton that makes it seem like nothing's happened in the genre in a half-dozen years or more (autotune, in-da-club video, placeholder lyrics about love and heartbreak, etc., etc.). I'm not surprised that it's very popular, but do people actually think it's better than Rosalía's work (and when I say that I'm including both her songs and her videos as a whole package)? I mean, I don't even like Rosalía's post-album singles that much but even those songs are much better than anything I've heard from Sech. The dude is a dime a dozen to my ear, and the fact that he's currently popular says nothing about the quality of his work. Or am I wrong?

shared unit of analysis (unperson), Saturday, 16 November 2019 23:35 (six months ago) link

i don't get "otro trago" myself but given that apparently this is not the first time ppl have questioned its lack of exposure or plaudits in some corners compared to what's readily afforded to, e.g., rosalía -- when, as you mention, there are scores of other aesthetically similar tunes that could be at the center of similar complaints -- tells me that there's more to it than i'm attuned to

i wouldn't say most of rosalía's recent singles are better than it tho. on some level i feel like some of the adulation she's being heaped with in recent months is from ppl who felt like they were a bit late to get on the hypetrain and are consequently responding more to her overall catalog and strength of musicianship than specifically to her recent work, much of which is uninspiring

dyl, Sunday, 17 November 2019 00:07 (six months ago) link

The “Otro Trago” Remix is better than the original , but yeah it may not be the best choice to use to make the point re reggaeton and Latin Grammys choices

curmudgeon, Sunday, 17 November 2019 20:05 (six months ago) link

Rolling Stone writer Esposito and headline re announcement of main Grammys--

Latin Music Is Being Quarantined at the 2020 Grammys
Rosalía is the only Spanish-language artist to break into a general category — the rest are castaways

Things seemed to look up in 2019 when “I Like It,” the Latin trap crossover hit by Cardi B, J Balvin and Bad Bunny, received the nomination for Record of the Year. But in spite of its skyrocketing revenue and growing ubiquity in anglophone pop culture — with support from bicultural Latina superstars like Cardi, Camila Cabello and Selena Gomez — Latin music will be excluded from the most prestigious Grammys categories, which include Record of the Year, Song of the Year and Album of the Year.

In 2020, Catalan avant-pop star Rosalía will be the only Spanish-language recording artist to break into the general category that is Best New Artist. Though the Academy has previously honored artists who’ve performed in Spanish, such as Puerto Rican rocker José Feliciano and Ecuadorian-American diva Christina Aguilera, the Best New Artist award has historically gone to those who primarily record in English. A win for Rosalía in this category would be an unprecedented win for Spain, as well as the Latin music industry, which has embraced her over the last two years.

curmudgeon, Friday, 22 November 2019 14:23 (six months ago) link

https://remezcla.com/lists/music/nuevo-noise-12-songs/

So much music to keep up with

curmudgeon, Wednesday, 27 November 2019 15:40 (five months ago) link

yes

Fuck the NRA (ulysses), Wednesday, 27 November 2019 16:39 (five months ago) link


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