October 7, 2022

Rosalía: the sound revolution that dismantled flamenco turns 30

Madrid, Sept 23 (EFE).- Rosalía’s career, turning 30 this Sunday, is a journey of transgression from her debut album more attached to classical cante, by breaking the canon with “Malamente” and deconstructing “Motomami ” to revolutionize flamenco conventions and turn them into a pop element.

His love for flamenco was perhaps his most surprising feature when, after collaborating on songs like “Antes de muerteme” with a C. Tangana that was still a long way from “El madrileño”, in 2017 he released his first album “Los Ángeles ”, by the hand of a Raül Refree who came from working with Silvia Pérez Cruz or Kiko Veneno.

Many subsequently credited the producer for the performance of that disc with twelve sober songs, voice and guitar, around the theme of death. “She’s the one who was clear about what album she wanted to make and who did research looking for these cantes,” they corrected at the time of her record company after seeing her become the word of mouth that filled theaters in a matter of hours. .

“You sing like an old woman,” Pepe Habichuela blurted out as the album made you believe that a new disciple was coming aboard the quejío, although within the world there was also an important segment that didn’t stop seeing her as an intruder who didn’t really sing like a singer

Without feeling the turn of the script that the Catalan was preparing, two years later a song broke through on the Spanish music scene: “Malamente” blew up every assumption about the artist. Flamenco memories, the influence of commercial pop, a foray into the emerging world of the staircase and a groundbreaking music video burned her in the history of music.

The ‘tree’ of “Malamente” would just be the appetizer. Under the pretense of a graduation project and inspired by the 13th-century Occitan novel “Flamenca”, Rosalía combined the urban aesthetic of her adolescence listening to music in car parks with her dedication to the cante jondo of consecrated tablaos in “El Mal Querer” (2018), a milestone that caught the attention of the public around the world.

Songs like “Pienso en tu mirá”, “Say my name” or “Baghdad” told the story of an abusive relationship that earned him a platinum record, two Latin Grammys and the Grammy for “best Latin rock, urban or alternative album”. ” yielded. after getting advertisements on the billboards of Times Square.

However, there were other opponents who accused her of ‘cultural appropriation’ because she had adopted characteristics of Andalusian culture, especially Gypsy slang and symbolism.

“It is not that I am being attacked specifically, but rather the situation of people who are lucky, like me, to study music, the music I wanted,” Rosalía stated in an interview defending herself against criticism and in which he also referred to his wish to publish “a song in which one moves, in which one dances”.

The wish would come true in 2019 with the release of “Con Altura”, which, by the hand of J Balvin, would open the doors of the clubs in Spain and Latin America and start her on a torrent of releases, including collaborations out with The Weeknd and Tokischa or the EP “Fucking Money Man” (2019), where two songs warned of the lights and shadows of fame and fortune.

Gradually Rosalía began to move more and more into the field of Latin urban, leaving behind a large number of hits such as “Yo x Ti, Tú x Mi” with Ozuna or “Las noche de noche” with Bad Bunny, without stopping flirting with experimental music in collaborations like “Barefoot in the park” with James Blake.

The singer’s silence, interrupted by occasional singles, foretold the recording of an album that was long in coming. It wouldn’t be until the end of 2021 when the singles “Hentai” and “La Fama” announced their sound the flamenco influence they manifested in emblematic performances such as the Goya 2019, where they performed the Los Chunguitos song “Me quedo tu”.

Although the singles differed notably from each other and did not seem to respond to the concept of an album, the release of “Motomami” in March this year surprised by deconstructing “El mal Querer” into a hugely catchy, sounding and urban album. , sometimes raw, sometimes tender, and able to reconcile all its influences, from Camarón de la Isla to Kanye West, including Héctor Lavoe’s salsa and Rihanna’s pop.

The emergence of this album, the title of which has become synonymous with strength and empowerment, has garnered the best reviews internationally, earned her 9 Latin Grammy nominations and embarked on a “tour” that successfully covers the world and which in December will end in Paris with all tickets sold.

“Despechá”, which premiered during the full tour, is his latest “hit” with beats that flirt with the mambo and reverberated at parties this summer, reaffirming it as the source of a great, influential and avant-garde work with only 30 years and a lot of life ahead.

Salvador Leon/Javier Herrero

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.