By: Pablo De Sainz
It’s starting to get old: A Spanish-Language singer translates the lyrics into English, dyes his or her hair blonde, and comes out with a really a bad album. Ricky Martin did it. So did Enrique Iglesias, Shakira, and Paulina Rubio.
But although Puetro Rican singer Luis Fonsi is known for his Spanish-Language ballads and is now releasing his first English-Language album, please don’t call it a “crossover.” “I’ve been singing in English all my life,” says Fonsi. “I’m not crossing over to anywhere, I’ve always been here!”
Fonsi has lived in the United States since he was ten, and attended Florida State’s music school. He knows American pop very well, as can be noticed in his new production in English, “Fight the Feeling,” (MCA records/Universal Latino, 2002).
This album is full of youthful rhythms such as R&B and Hip-Hop. It is a perfect blending of ballads with up tempo melodies. This isn’t one of those albums where most of the lyrics are translations from Spanish.
“The new album is about great music, great lyrics, great sounds,” says Fonsi. “We wanted something fresh, so there’s edgy... Hip-Hop, Rhythms and Classic melodic structures, everything that makes me who I am musically.”
The album includes really groovy songs like “Keep my cool” and “Twisted.” But it also has romantic melodies such as “ I wish,” “Tell her tonight” and “Save me.”
My personal favorite is “If only.” It is heavily influenced by flamenco music, and the guitar can be heard all over the lyrics: “Tell me how I can go on now that you’re gone/All the days seem so long.”
This combination of pop with other rhythms, such as salsa and flamenco, adds to “Fight the Feeling.”
“Sometimes I feel split into two different people,” says Fonsi. “Everything I do shows my Latin influences, but I can be very R&B flavored too. I’m not afraid to say it though: Pop is all about melody, and that’s what I’m all about.”
This new album will give new audiences a chance to hear one of the most dynamic singers in the Spanish-Language musical spectrum.
“In some countries, I can fill a stadium with 25,000 people,” says Fonsi. “In others, I might play a club with 250 people. But it’s all god. I’m loving every moment of my life.”
Reader, Don’t fight the feeling. Buy Luis Fonsi’s new album in English.