Produced by

The Relevance of Reggaeton

« previous episode | next episode »

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Five years ago, Puerto Rican politicians criticized reggaeton music as base and immoral. Today the music has become the soundtrack of the nation and is studied in the halls of academia. On today’s show: we look at the poetry and politics inside the Caribbean hip-hop genre known as reggaeton. Also: Argentinean pianist Fernando Otero performs live.
Reggaeton: From the alleys of San Juan to academia. The rhythm that mixes hip-hop with Caribbean music was born in Puerto Rico in the 90s and became a continental phenomenon with irreverent songs about sex, race, and immigrants. We’ll talk to the editors of a new book that studies reggaeton’s relevance, politics and poetry.

Guests:

Fernando Otero

The Relevance of Reggaeton

The rhythm that mixes hip-hop with Caribbean music was born in Puerto Rico in the 90s and became a continental phenomenon with irreverent songs about sex, race, and immigrants. Today, we talk to Raquel Rivera, editor and author of Reggaeton, about the genre's relevance and legacy.

Comments [22]

Soundcheck's Picks of the Week

This week’s picks take us to the cradles of civilization, the depths of YouTube and an uninhabited island in Massachusetts. Read our full reviews and download a free track from the new Grizzly Bear album, Veckatimest, here.

Kronos Quartet, Floodplain (Nonesuch)

Kutiman, ThruYOU: Kutiman Mixes YouTube

Grizzly ...

Comment

Fernando Otero

Argentinean pianist Fernando Otero comes from a family of artists – his father was an actor and his mother and grandmother were famous opera singers. So he decided early that we wanted to be a musician, as long as tango had something to do with it. He joins us to ...

Comments [2]

Reggaeton and the right to rap en español

Reggaeton might just be the most successful cultural export from Puerto Rico since Ricky Martin. But if Puerto Rican authorities had had their way back in the late 90s, this hard-driving style, with its often hardcore lyrics, would never have made it to 2004, when Daddy Yankee's out-of-nowhere hit "Gasolina" made reggaeton matter in the US. For years, reggaeton was seen by the authorities as a low-class, no-morals blight on society. It actually reminds me of another style of music... wait, which one was it again... Hip-hop? Jazz? Tango? Ragtime? The Waltz? Oh wait - I remember. It was ALL OF THEM!

Comments [1]

Picks of the Week

This week’s picks take us to the cradles of civilization, the depths of YouTube and an uninhabited island in Massachusetts. Plus, download a free track from the new Grizzly Bear album, Veckatimest.

Comment