Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Song #492 of 9999 - Latinoamérica by Calle 13

Yo yo yo, it's Guest Blogger Night! Tonight, I turn things over to my sole Colombian friend, Andres Cardona, to share his personal connection with Calle 13's "Latinoamérica." I asked Dre for some biographical info and this is what he said:
Former Songfighter Dre resides in the Pacific Northwest, where he enjoys; Dirt Biking, Snowboarding, and rock climbing. He spends way too much time reading books on “Songwritting,” or “Psychology / History of music,” and way too much money building his record collection. His last successful music project was the 2011 RPM Challenge, where he collaborated with strangers from craigslist to write and record an album in 28 days. http://tokyoexpressway.bandcamp.com He still locks himself in his room, to write or record new music, depending on season and mood. He is currently trying to hack the Florida Lottery, with his mad programming skillzz, with no luck yet.

Song #492 of 9999

Title: Latinoamérica
Artist: Calle 13
Year: 2010
Album: Entren Los Que Quieran

I first heard Calle 13's "Latinoamérica" via Facebook from my friend Otho.

The year was 1991; I was an anxious and timid 5th grader, attending a new school. Unlike most anxious 5th graders starting a new school, I also didn't know any English, as my family had just migrated from Colombia to Florida, earlier that year.

Sitting in a classroom amidst other immigrant children, mostly from Latin America and the Caribbean, we would all try to crack this code, called English. Some of the most outspoken and rebellious kids in the classroom, were from the small island of Puerto Rico, one of the most laidback and easy going of them all was named Otho. Otho, was my first friend in the United States.

Growing up within a strong Puerto Rican culture, while being embraced by them, I learned to love and hate everything about them. They can be loud, obnoxious, argumentative, but also warm, caring, unstifled, and most importantly, fun. Till this day, I think Puerto Ricans, like the black ghetto family you always wish you had, are the most fun people to be around. It must be an island thing.

The Puerto Rican stepbrothers known as Calle 13 have built a successful musical career by knowing who they are, and where they're from. Their 2010 release, Entren Los Que Quieran (Enter Those Who Want to), won Latin Grammy Album of the Year, for its eclectic musical style, including Rock, Ska, Reggaeton, and Bollywood. Its fifth single "Latinoamérica (Latin American)," later won song of the year 2011.

No other modern pop song paints such a picture of what it means to be of Hispanic descent. Where family, hard work, resilience, and love for thy neighbor, is all that matters. Where you are expected to make the most with what you have, even if it’s very little, just like everybody else.

So do yourself a favor, especially if you're planning on visiting Machu Picchu in Peru, or the Jungles of Costa Rica, go volcano boarding in Nicaragua, or Patagonia in Argentina. Don’t just be a souvenir buying gringo, watch this music video, and understand how these people truly feel about their daily lives, and you too would be able to relate.

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