Welcome to LATINA’s weekly round-up of the best new music. This week’s list features new singles from Colombian queens Shakira and Karol G. Mexican-American pop star Becky G teases her new album with the dance track “No Mienten” and Xenia Rubinos reworks one of songs into “Madrugada.”
Puerto Rican icon Ricky Martin makes his return to the ballad with “A Veces Bien Y A Veces Mal” featuring Mexican trio Reik. Among the rising stars, Dominican-American singer Willie Gomez breaks out with “Vicio” and Puerto Rican artist Lyanno turns up the heat with his debut album “El Cambio.” Check out the list below.
Shakira and Rauw Alejandro, “Te Felicito”
Shakira is back! The Colombian icon released her first new single of the year, “Te Felicito.” She teamed up with Puerto Rican singer Rauw Alejandro, who is on a hot streak of collaborations with the Latina pop queens; his recent collaborators include Jennifer Lopez, Selena Gomez, and Anitta. In “Te Felicito,” Shakira blends funk music with a reggaeton edge. The lyrics, in which both artists dismiss lovers with a fake façade, are reminiscent of Rihanna’s “Take a Bow.” “Congratulations, you act so well/I have no doubt about that,” Shakira sings condescendingly in Spanish. In the music video, both artists are on a mission to revive the robot dance move. Alejandro plays the part of a robot boyfriend that she has built to be the perfect man. In performance shots, they execute the robot moves with sexy results. Together, they find a new groove in this slick kiss-off anthem.
Willie Gomez, “Vicio”
Like Shakira, the Dominican-American artist Willie Gomez also appeared in the 2020 Super Bowl halftime show, as a backup dancer for Jennifer Lopez. When Gomez, who got his start as a dancer, shifted his focus to his music career in 2017, one of his first cheerleaders was Britney Spears, with whom he had previously worked. “To have her support when I shared with her that I was going to start focusing on music was really special,” he told LATINA. Gomez’s new single “Vicio” refreshingly blends pop with a reggaeton rhythm. He co-wrote the sultry track with George Noriega, who helped Ricky Martin, Shakira, and J.Lo cross over into the English market. Gomez promised that his upcoming debut album will be “full of those bops that make you feel good.” Now, he is combining his worlds of dance and song, like in his previous music videos for “Borracho De Tus Besos” with Randy, “Salvaje,” and “Mojados.” When we spoke, Gomez added, “You don’t have to stay in one lane or one box. We can do whatever we want as long as we put in 150 percent of ourselves.”
Ricky Martin and Reik, “A Veces Bien Y A Veces Mal”
Speaking of Ricky Martin, the Puerto Rican superstar released his new single “A Veces Bien Y A Veces Mal,” in collaboration with the Mexican trio Reik. In this heartfelt ballad, Martin and Reik’s Jesús Navarro trade verses on sticking with their lovers through thick and thin. “This song is very special to me. It’s very romantic and in many ways takes me back to the beginning of my career,” Martin said in a statement. About collaborating with Reik, he added, “I really wanted to work with Reik. They are an extremely talented group and we hope that fans will receive [the song] with the same love with which we made it.” As an openly gay artist, Martin continues to use his platform to uplift the LGBTQ+ community. The music video stars Spanish model Angela Ponce, who made history as the first transgender woman to be crowned Miss Spain in 2018. Martin’s next EP “Play” will be released on May 20.
Karol G, “Provenza”
Karol G looks ahead to summer with her new single “Provenza,” her first new single of the year that is not a collaboration. The Colombian superstar embraces an Afro-beats influence, blending an electronic sound with a reggaeton rhythm. In the alluring dance track, she reminisces on good times that she shared with an old flame. The song is backed by warped and haunting vocals that are similar to those of Bad Bunny. “Today I’m finally back with an audiovisual project that’s completely new for me. It’s one of the most chimba songs that I have made in my career,” Karol G wrote in an Instagram story. In the music video, she takes a cruise along the beach and finds a paradise that’s filled with women from all walks of life. Fresh off performing at both weekends of Coachella, Karol G announced her $trip Love World Tour happening this fall.
Becky G, “No Mienten”
Becky G was a surprise guest during Karol G’s Coachella set. The Mexican-American pop star joined Karol G onstage for the first live performance of their global hit “Mamiii.” Earlier this week, Becky G also premiered the music video for their collaboration. The revenge visual stars Mia Khalifa and “Euphoria” actor Angus Cloud. As another gift to her fans, Becky G also dropped her new single “No Mienten.” The song was produced by Spanish DJ Juanko, who gives her Latin pop sound an electronic guaracha twist. Over the hypnotic beat, Becky G sings about a hot dance floor hookup. She also revealed that her second album “Esquemas” will be released on May 13. “I am so thankful for the people showing support,” she wrote on Twitter, “The truth is I went through a lot during the time it took to create this album. Nice things and not so good things. It makes me so happy. ROMPIENDO ESQUEMAS BABY!!!”
Xenia Rubinos and El Individuo, “Madrugada”
Xenia Rubinos is ringing in spring with her new single “Madrugada.” For this track, the New York-based musician of Puerto Rican and Cuban descent teamed up with rapper El Individuo. “El Individuo had just arrived to NYC from Habana for the first time and came straight into this session without us ever having met and just blew us all away,” Rubinos said in a statement. In the atmospheric track, she tends to yield the floor to the Cuban artist, who spits rhymes about blossoming new beginnings. Rubinos’ soulful vocals are a backdrop to El Individuo’s deep words and a bright spot on this arresting collaboration. About recording the song, she elaborated, “Creating this rework in a whirlwind cypher with this supergroup of musicians felt like opening a secret trap door we found in the original song.” “Madrugada” is a re-imagining of Rubinos’ song “What Is This Voice” from her critically-acclaimed album “Una Rosa.”
Lyanno came up alongside his best friend and fellow Puerto Rican singer, Rauw Alejandro. The two are known for blending reggaeton music with an R&B touch, which Lyanno does throughout his debut album, “El Cambio.” Lyanno and Alejandro previously teamed up for sultry collaboration “Poderosa” and the hot-and-heavy “En Tu Cuerpo” remix featuring Lenny Tavárez and María Becerra. Most of the album was produced by Puerto Rican duo Subelo NEO, who is responsible for Bad Bunny’s smash hit “Yo Perreo Sola.” In the new songs, Lyanno flexes his charm as one of reggaeton’s sexiest voices. In the alluring trap track “Nasty,” he sings about making love in the limo. He teamed up with another Puerto Rican heartthrob, Lunay, for the captivating reggaeton romp “Dos Opciones.” Lyanno also takes the genre into the future with the electronic-influenced “Mi Momento Favorito” with Dalex and the hypnotic “Guay,” in which he mixes house music with reggaeton. Lyanno aims to please with this seductive LP.