Entertainment

Maluma Breaks His Silence On The Latin Grammys Controversy And Spills The Tea On So Much More

The Latin Grammys came under fire in September when they snubbed Colombian singer Maluma and other reggaeton artists, while nominating non-Latinx musicians from Spain like Rosalia instead. Maluma, J Balvin, Daddy Yankee, Natti Natasha, Nicky Jam released statements in defense of reggaeton, arguably one of the most popular genres in the world right now, on social media. 

Now the “11 PM” singer has finally spoken out about the controversy that rocked the industry. Maluma hasn’t been entirely excluded from the Latin Grammys, winning his first last year for Best Contemporary Pop Vocal Album for F.A.M.E. He’s received 11 Latin Grammy nominations in his career. However, his most recent effort and fourth studio album 11:11 was snubbed entirely despite earning various nominations for other awards. 

Maluma breaks his silence on the Latin Grammys controversy. 

“To be honest, I don’t feel like I’m a part of the Academy. Like, I don’t know, they want me out,” Maluma told Entertainment Tonight. “The whole genre, reggaeton music, we change lives. We’re doing amazing things for the world, and I feel like they don’t see it.” 

Maluma isn’t wrong, in 2018, Rolling Stone claimed reggaeton is more popular than ever, but because of that, there’s industry-wide panic that the genre could take over and muscle out other markets like pop and rock. 

“Between 2016 and 2017, the number of Spanish-language entries on the Hot 100 jumped from a mere four to 19. So far this year, there have been at least 16 more charting singles,” the publication said. 

Maluma’s fears of an industry backlash against reggaeton just might be true.

If reggaeton reigns supreme than other genres will begin to disappear because they are no longer profitable for artists and labels. 

“Even Mexico — which used to be a pop and rock market for a long time — is turning into an urban market. When everything becomes a monoculture, it’s dangerous for the sake of artistry,” Juan Paz, a former major-label employee said. 

However, artists like Jesus Navarro, the lead singer of Mexican pop-rock trio Reik, said some musicians are just upset the former underdog is now reigning supreme. 

“Four or five years ago, pop music was still the ruling genre, it was the king, it had the radio stations and the magazines,” Navarro said. “Pop artists used to look down on reggaeton artists. And when they finally start to collaborate with those acts, some are still not very willing to immerse themselves in the sound and the nuances.”

One of the people Rolling Stone interviewed, even called out Maluma, who has had three consecutive number one albums on the Top Latin Albums chart and had the second-biggest streaming debut for a Latin album in 2019, by name. 

“Unfortunately at the end of the day, record labels’ jobs is not to expand culture,” adds Tomas Cookman, head of the Latin-music-focused indie label Nacional Records. “They’re out to make a buck. If Maluma’s big you’ll find other labels trying to sign their version of him.”

Maluma and other artists feel dissed by the Latin Recording Academy. 

“It’s kind of sad because we all appreciate and we all respect the Academy. When we see the nominations, it’s like, ‘What did I do wrong?’ Like, [it’s] so random and so weird and not being a part of it, you feel like you’re not part of the Latin Academy,” Maluma said. “That’s why we wanted to talk about it and see what’s going on with the Academy. I think it has to change.”

J. Balvin, a reggaeton superstar, who was the most-streamed artist on Spotify worldwide in 2018, said that reggaeton has been historically denigrated. 

“I know there’s a lot being said about reggaeton and the phrase ‘without reggaeton there is no Latin GRAMMYs,'” Balvin elaborated. 

“What we want to say is, they [the Latin Recording Academy] utilize our media power because we drive the masses. But, that doesn’t mean that because we have such a strong following that our music is the best, or the best produced, or the best written. But, there is a history that dates back many years, where our genre has been denigrated.”

Maluma is hopeful that the Latin Grammys and industry will change and grow to respect reggaeton. 

“I think it’s going to happen, actually, because we have to talk about it,” the 25-yea-old singer said. “It’s something happening inside the Academy, but I think next year, I hope we all will be there.”

As Hector Rubin Rivera, the senior director for A&R at Warner Latin, acknowledged, there was a time when salsa music was dismissed as “urban.” 

“Salsa music for Latinos was urban music back when [the famous salsa label] Fania started [in New York in 1964],” Rubin told Rolling Stone. “They were as rebellious and revolutionary as the reggaeton guys. Back then I’m sure everyone felt the same way — ‘Everybody’s paying attention to salsa, bro, but I’m trying to do ballads!’”

Maluma Is Keeping Us Up To Date On His Life In Quarantine And I Couldn’t Be More Grateful

Entertainment

Maluma Is Keeping Us Up To Date On His Life In Quarantine And I Couldn’t Be More Grateful

maluma/ Instagram

Stars, they’re just like us, right? I mean kind of. Sure, Maluma is also in self-isolation thanks to the global Coronavirus pandemic. But he’s in quarantine in his hometown of Medellin on his palatial estate and looking better than he’s ever looked. Meanwhile, I’m in quarantine in Mexico City, I’ve put on probably 10 pounds and sometimes more than 24 hours go by before I realize I haven’t even brushed my teeth. So no…stars aren’t just like us.

But I’m glad they’re not because then I get to thirst after Maluma through his very thirsty social media content. Sure, Maluma shirtless isn’t that big of a deal since, well he’s basically always shirtless, but something about him being so almost naked and living his best #quarantinelife is just what I need right now.

Maluma’s 11:11 World Tour had to be put on pause due to the Coronavirus outbreak but he’s been making up for it with some seriously #bts content.

Following the delay of his world tour, Maluma travelled back to his hometown of Medellin, where’s he’s been spending quarantine since mid-March. So for nearly two months now, the reggaetónero has been spending quality time with his family, focused on his health and body (it shows!) and has even released a new single (and video) called “ADMV” – “Amor de mi Vida.”

In a previous interview with Billboard, Maluma said, “I realized I was investing so much energy, so much time in my career that I was forgetting about myself, about my spirit and the important things in life like my family, like finding that love of my life… I’m tired about listening to the same kinds of songs; people talking about diamonds and about Ferraris. There are more important things.”

Swoon.

Maluma has even let fans in on a behind-the-scenes look into his home – and I was living for it.

In the video, presented by Architectural Digest – which Maluma shot himself – the singer calls his home his ‘sanctuary’ and it’s easy to see why. Situated up in the green hills outside of Medellín, his home is gorgeous. He reveals he’s lived there for three years and it’s truly his home.

Even his morning routine left me in giggles as he describes how he wakes up in the morning, descends to the ground level in his private elevator, and makes his very own cup of coffee. Minus the elevator part, very relatable.

Since he’s been spending so much time at home – he’s also been showering his fans with shirtless photos.

Credit: maluma / Instagram

With another quarantine week in full swing, Maluma, posing in a steamy shirtless photo, asked fans who was the love of their life. Fans immediately showered the comment section with “you are,” and it’s easy to see why.

Serving smiles and body.

Credit: maluma / Instagram

From Instagram lives to mini-photoshoots, Maluma has been keeping himself (and many of us) very busy. He’s helped make this quarantine a little less horrible thanks to his nearly daily dose of thirst trapping – that’s right it’s not just for Thursdays.

Walking the dogs really builds up a sweat.

Credit: maluma / Instagram

Maluma has made it well-known that he loves animals – especially his two dogs Bonnie and Clyde. He posts about them frequently and when one of them fell ill – he was heartbroken but thankfully they recovered. Now, we get to enjoy photos of him spending time with two of his best friends – shirtless. I’m here for it.

He even shared a #BTS of his makeup work for the video of ‘ADMV’.

Credit: maluma / Instagram

Ok…so this isn’t typically what I thirst after. But it was cool to see some behind the scenes shots of this next level makeup job that left the 26-year-old singer looking twice his age.

And OK this has nothing to do with his quarantine life but it’s too good not to include here.

Credit: maluma / Instagram

Shot for this Calvin Klein campaign, Maluma left millions speechless with the full-body, nearly-nude photoshoot.

Maluma And Eva Longoria Are Just Two Of The Huge Names Joining A Virtual Cinco De Mayo Event That You Definitely Want To Join

Things That Matter

Maluma And Eva Longoria Are Just Two Of The Huge Names Joining A Virtual Cinco De Mayo Event That You Definitely Want To Join

Sony Entertainment / Maluma

The Coronavirus pandemic has forced millions of Americans to shelter in place from the safety of their homes. Meanwhile, millions of others are on the frontlines keeping this country running. They’re now known as “essential workers” and they’re made up of healthcare workers, grocery store clerks, fast food attendants, line cooks at local restaurants, janitors, meat processing plant workers, and agricultural workers.

These roles now deemed “essential” all have one thing in common – they employ a higher percentage of immigrant and undocumented workers than most other segments of the economy. 

And with Cinco de Mayo happening tomorrow, there is a star-studded event taking place that we all need to show up to – even if we don’t get out of our sweatpants.

Farmworkers and the undocumented community are more vulnerable now than ever – and they need your help.

Credit: Paul Sanders / Flickr

More than an estimated three million farmworkers are on the frontlines, helping support the global food supply. And they’re doing it during a global health crisis.

About 50% of the agricultural workforce is comprised of undocumented immigrants. Because of the nature of their work, physical distancing is difficult to abide by as is handwashing and other CDC requirements. They’re also missing required protective gear, including masks. All while having to face the constant fear of deportation.

And while the government has stepped up in some ways to help those who have lost their jobs because of the pandemic – they are specifically excluding undocumented workers (even those deemed essential) from receiving federal aid.

And that’s where Altísimo Live comes in!

Credit: AltísimoLive / Instagram

In an effort to provide for farmworkers throughout the U.S., RetroPop Media and iHeartLatino joined forces to develop Altísimo Live!. Together with the iHeartLatino Chairman and Chief Creative Officer Enrique Santos, Eva Longoria will host this huge, star-studded concert, which will feature some of the biggest Latino artists.

So how do you attend a virtual event?

Credit: AltísimoLive / Instagram

Altísimo Live is a free event but its organizers are asking for $5 donations from viewers in an effort to support the community. All you have to do. Is text “Cinco” to 91999 or you can donate directly to the Farmworkers’ Pandemic Relief Fund. They hope to raise $3 million to provide care and supplies to farmworkers and their families.

The bilingual event kicks off across the concert’s official social media pages: Facebook LiveYouTubeTwitter, Periscope, and Twitch simultaneously on Tuesday, May 5th at 1 p.m. ET. They’re going to lead the event off with an interactive tailgating experience and then sets of continuous performances. There will even be interactive Q&As between artists and their fans at 8 p.m. ET.

All from the comfort of your own home.

And trust, this is one you’re going to want to tune into.

Credit: AltísimoLive / Instagram

The long list of celebrities performing includes Maluma, Becky G, Gloria and Emilio Estefan, Jesse & Joy, A.B. Quintanilla III y Los Kumbia Allstarz, Juanes, Luis Fonsi, Nicky Jam, Maná, Ivy Queen, Los Tigres del Norte, Carlos Vives, and Marc Anthony and others. Additionally, Sofia Vergara, J Balvin, Kate del Castillo, Rosario Dawson, and Alejandro Sanz will make appearances.

Fashion designers Mario De la Torre, Carlos Marrero, and Raul Peñaranda, will also join the event to share how they are using their talent and unique designs in support of the pandemic relief effort. Some of their special edition farmworker-inspired designs will be available for purchase in support of the event.

How else can you show love for the community?

Credit: AltísimoLive / Instagram

So although the event is free, the organizers are looking to raise that $3 million at $5 a person. Incredible! But in addition to donating, you can also show your support for the event by blasting it across your social media using #AltisimoLive, #CincoOnCinco and #SupportFarmworkers.

Some of the event’s proceeds will also benefit Coalition of Florida Farmworker Organizations, East Coast Migrant Head Start Project, NC Fields, La Cooperativa Campesina de California, LULAC of Puerto Rico, La Union del Pueblo Entero in Texas and more.

However, the concert series isn’t just about raising money for farmworkers. It’s also a reminder that they are appreciated and that we as a community have their back.

You can also wear your support on your sleeve!

Credit: Mitú

You can also literally wear your support for farmworkers on your sleeve and help support the event’s organizations. Mitú has launched a womens, mens and kids t-shirt line with the Farmworkers Are Always Essential slogan on them. Twenty percent of the proceeds from the sale of every t-shirt on the Mitú shop will go to the Farmworkers Pandemic Relief Fund.

Tune in to Altísimo Live! on Tuesday, May 5th starting at 10 a.m. PT, 1 p.m. ET.