Entertainment

From Latin Trap ‘Rude Boy’ To Harvard Speaker: Bad Bunny Was Invited To Give A Talk To Harvard Students

This year has seen Bad Bunny jetsetting from country to country on his long-awaited European tour. Last week, however, the king of Latin trap made a special visit that wasn’t included in his tour itinerary. Bad Bunny was invited to Harvard University to share his insights and career advice with a few lucky students, aspiring musicians and creatives.

credit Instagram @badbunnypr

Bad Bunny attended Harvard University last week —but not as a student or to film a new music video, the rapper was invited to give a talk on music and activism.

credit Instagram @badbunnypr

The Puerto Rican artist offered a talk at Harvard University last week, in which he discussed the way he wants to open up space for activism and protest within his music and his presentations. Benito Martinez —the rapper’s real name— also talked extensively on inclusion, which has been a strong element in music videos. He touched upon his gender-flexible art, which has positioned him as somewhat of a queer icon, and his wish to create socially inclusive spaces. 

The talk was hosted by ‘No Label’ a platform that has become an essential key in the music industry to provide space that allows artists to be themselves.

credit Instagram @badbunnypr

The talk that El Conejo Malo imparted last Friday at Harvard, was part of a monthly series called Uncut by No Label —an agency that curates “nontraditional spaces for artists to share ideas they actually care about.” The creative agency ‘No Label’ has fostered spaces for artists like Travis Scott, JID, Cousin Stizz —and most recently Bad Bunny— to develop themes from creativity, to criminal justice reforms.

The talk was directed by a Harvard scholar who studies Reggaeton and the impact it has on the island of Puerto Rico.

credit Twitter @ZalUIbaorimi

Last Friday’s talk was directed by Professor Petra Rivera-Rideau, a scholar who studies race and ethnic identities and popular culture in Latin America and U.S. Latina/o communities. Rivera-Rideau is the author of the book “Remixing Reggaeton: The Cultural Politics of Race in Puerto Rico”, which studies the political history of reggaeton on the Caribbean island.

This was Bad Bunny’s second visit to an academic institute during the month of October.

credit Twitter @mcdonaldscorp

Benito’s been doing the rounds in the academic sphere as of late. He first visited an academic institute on the 10th of October, when he appeared by surprise in the city of Hialleah, in Miami-Dade County, to announce a scholarship program aimed at low-income Hispanic students, whom he recommended not to abandon studies .

The famous reggaetonero called on the 300 students gathered in the auditorium of the institute “to continue studying and give the best of oneself to succeed in life.”

Benito is known for taking a stand and taking to the streets to demand change.

credit Twitter @blockholy

Earlier this summer, while on a break in Ibiza, the Latin trap star tweeted that he was putting the tour on hold to join protestors in Puerto Rico. Using the hashtag #RickyRenuncia, Bad Bunny and thousands of other Puerto Ricans called for the resignation of Puerto Rico Governor Ricardo Rosselló, who was embroiled in a corruption scandal.

The urban music icon took to Instagram to share his political views and to rally his fellow Puerto Rican followers to join the protests.

credit Twitter @blockholy

“For years, decades, the system has taught us to stay quiet,” said Bad Bunny in one of two Instagram videos posted in July and since deleted. “They’ve made us believe that those who take to the streets to speak up are crazy, criminals, troublemakers. Let’s show them that today’s generations demand respect […] The country doesn’t belong to them, it belongs to all of us.”

Residente, Ricky Martin and Olga Tañon joined Bad Bunny in protests against Roselló.

credit instagram @ricky_martin

Bad Bunny was just one of the celebrities (along with Ricky Martin and others) who was on the ground in Puerto Rico calling for the governor’s resignation—which he eventually (and reluctantly) gave. “Yesterday marked me forever,” he wrote in Spanish on Instagram. “I had never felt so much pride in my life! However, the fight continues PUERTO RICO!”

That was not the first time Bad Bunny confronted the island’s head of state.

credit instagram @ricky_martin

In January, Bad Bunny and fellow Puerto Rican rapper Residente, showed up unannounced to the governor’s mansion in the wee hours of the morning, to address the island’s high crime rate. Back then, they only had diplomatic words for Rosselló; but in their brand new track “Afilando Los Cuchillos”, or “Sharpening The Knives,” Bad Bunny shares his most politically incisive commentary yet. “Let all the continents know that Ricardo Rosselló is an incompetent, homophobic liar,” spits Bunny in Spanish: “A delinquent, no one wants you…not even your own people.”

Bad Bunny is an example of what a well-rounded artist can accomplish and how empowering his work can be. Whether he’s selling out arenas, taking the time to protest for causes he believes in, or speaking to students about the industry, we can’t wait to find out what the ‘callaita’ singer has in store for us next. 

A Florida Teen Has Overcome Immense Obstacles, Including Homelessness, To Become His School’s Valedictorian

Things That Matter

A Florida Teen Has Overcome Immense Obstacles, Including Homelessness, To Become His School’s Valedictorian

Martin Folsom / Facebook

Right now we are in the midst of so much change. There is so much going on in the world – from a global pandemic that has left millions of us in social isolation to a brand new social justice movement in the wake of murder of unarmed Black men.

We’re being bombarded with so much serious news, it’s hard to remember that there are still people out there leading powerful, incredible lives and making a difference.

One Florida teen has overcome all the odds, including years of homeless, to graduate from his high school as valedictorian and we need to celebrate and recognize this huge accomplishment.

Martin Folsom graduated at the top of his class after struggling through years of homelessness.

Since he was a child, Martin Folsom and his mother Melva have been in and out of homelessness, according to Jacksonville television station WJXT.

Despite all the challenges he faced through the years, Folsom managed to keep his focus on his studies — and his efforts paid off when he was named his class’ valedictorian and graduated from Philip Randolph Career Academy in Jacksonville, FL.

“It kind of gave me a jolt in my chest a little bit, so it was a good feeling,” Folsom said in a video interview shared by KTRK. “It means a lot and it gives me a sense of all I’ve done and all I have accomplished was worth it.”

After college – Martin plans to attend Valdosta State University – he hopes to one day work for the FBI.

Martin credits his mom’s dedication and compassion for helping him succeed.

During his time in high school, Martin’s mom recalled desperately searching for a place to live with her son.

“Martin and I were in downtown McDonald’s and literally had nowhere to go,” she shared with WJXT. “I was on the phone calling people, calling organizations, and by the grace of God, we got into a shelter that day.”

Even with an uncertain living situation, Martin didn’t let that affect his studies.

“I never thought to myself, ‘I can’t do this anymore’ or ‘I’m done with this,'” explained the teen, who served as class president from freshman year through senior year. “It’s always been, ‘Well, it happened again and I’ve gotta keep myself up and keep moving forward.'”

He was set to walk across the stage last week for graduation, but that was canceled due to the pandemic.

Still, he isn’t letting that damper his spirits — especially since Martin had to overcome hurdle after hurdle to earn the high honor. He and his mom have struggled with homelessness since he was a kid, and throughout his four years of high school. They became homeless while fleeing Melva’s ex-husband, who has since been sentenced to 40 years in prison for murder.

Within two years, the mother and son reportedly lived in different shelters across five states before setting in Jacksonville.

“It’s been a rocky road, been a lot of hardships, but seeing myself here right now, about to graduate and go to college, it feels good knowing that all the stuff I’ve done, it was worth it,” Martin said.

He served as the class president for his grade for four years straight, from 9th grade to 12th grade. Now he will go on to college in the fall — and says that will be a big day for his family.

“As far as I know I’m the first person in my family to actually get a college degree,” he said.

Mariah Gives A Little More ‘Perreito’ This Quarantine

Entertainment

Mariah Gives A Little More ‘Perreito’ This Quarantine

The voice behind “Perreito,” Mariah Angeliq, gives an inside scoop on what she has coming up in her next projects and what she’s doing at home during the quarantine.

Mariah Angelique Pérez, known in the music industry as Mariah Angeliq, is a US-based reggaeton and trap artist that has hustled to quickly place herself at the top of the urban music genre.

The 20-year-old artist already has one hit single under her belt, “Perreito,” which has made everyone rush to the dance floor. Latido music interviewed the artist, who was born in Miami, to talk about what she’s up to during quarantine. She also shared another secret that you’re about to find out. 😉

Q: Mariah, you’re only 20 years old yet you have a huge career in the industry…How did this happen?

A: When you’re really young, sometimes people don’t pay much attention to you. The music industry is complicated, nonetheless, I let my music speak for itself.

Q: You ran away from home and your musical career began, what was that experience like?

A: Haha, it was hard but I had to do it. My mom was very overprotective with me and she didn’t let me do what I wanted, but I knew I had the talent to make it, to grow in music if that’s what I decided to do. When I took that risk was when I met Nelly, El Arma Secreta, and that’s when I realized that you have to risk it all to be who you really want to be.

Q: How did you become so close to El Arma Secreta?

A: I met Nelly in the studio, back when I only sang in English. He saw something in me that he liked, so we started working together and Nelly said something like, “we have to have her sing in Spanish!” and that was that.

Q: How have you been dealing with the quarantine and everything surrounding COVID-19?

A: I always try to look on the bright side of things. I’ve written a lot of songs during quarantine, I’ve been concentrating on myself, my career, and the good that can come from this moment.

Q: Has the quarantine affected any plans?

A: Yes, I think for all artists. 2020 is the year when I was most active in concerts and events and well, everything seems to be on pause for the moment. To give you some perspective, I opened up Premio Lo Nuestro and that was a huge step in my career and as soon as this is over I’ll be back for more.

Q: You’ve had a few releases these last few months, can we expect more music from Mariah as an antivirus?

A: Yes, I’ve had a few releases, canciones cabronas. Not too long ago I released “Y Que Paso?” beside Brray and the track goes hard and as for quarantine, you’re going to see a lot more. I have a whole lineup of songs for you to enjoy at home right now, even some big collaborations with Ñengo Flow and Lyanno, están cabronas.

Chosen by Pandora as one of their “Latino Artists to Follow in 2020,” Mariah Angeliq has managed to be seen in the urban music scene as a promising artist in the genre, and as she mentioned, there’s even more to come this quarantine.

Nothing left to do now but prepare ourselves and enjoy a little “Perreito” during quarantine.

Click here to learn more about Mariah.