Entertainment

We’re In Retrograde So Stay Away From Your Ex’s Thirsty Texts, Don’t Sign Anything And Other Things To Avoid During This Period

If you’ve been feeling a little off lately, don’t worry, no one is doing brujería on you. We are right in the middle of Mercury retrograde and its witch-like antics plan to continue until July 31, 2019.

If you’ve been resisting and ignoring all this talk about Mercury reggaeton, you might just be sabotaging yourself. Let us break down what we know about Mercury retrograde and what to do during this painfully confusing time period to ensure you don’t screw yourself over.

What happens during Mercury retrograde?

Rebelde / Televisa

Mercury retrograde is a phenomenon that seems to affect everyone in más o menos the same way. The first thing to note is that Mercury is known as the messenger planet. Anything we do that has to do with the exchange of information is processed through Mercury. Mercury controls communication and technology, which is heavily impacted during this time. You might get the sudden urge to start sending I miss you texts — or you might be on the receiving end of those kinds of messages.

When Mercury retrograde occurs, there’s an illusion that the planet starts to move backward for three and a half weeks. Think of this illusion as what you see when you’re sitting in traffic next to a car. If you race ahead, to some it could appear that the other car started going backward, but we know that’s not what happens. So when Earth starts to pull up ahead in this orbital race, and leaves Mercury in the dust, turbulence and other forces are disturbed that affect our everyday lives.

But it’s not as scary as it sounds. Here are some tips on how to survive this year’s Mercury retrograde and ensure this phenomenon doesn’t screw you over too much.

Stay Calm

VH1

Remember to breathe. It’s easy to get frustrated when everything feels like it’s falling apart or not going your way. Take a deep breath and remember that this is not the first time you experience Mercury retrograde. It also definitely will not be the last time either. It’s not a new phenomenon and you will make it.

Backup Your Technology

When was the last time that you backed up your phone or computer? These aren’t things that we actively think about doing, yet it is super important to do them because Mercury can pull forces to delete those selfies you had or destroy that essay that is due in the morning. You don’t want to be in the middle of slipping a selfie in a DM and then have your phone crash, unable to recover that fire photo you were about to send off. Our phones are basically our portable identity and our lives. Losing everything could be the end of us. The next best thing to do is to make sure you aren’t relying too much on technology. Your phone might be dead the ONE time you want to actually use Apple Pay and don’t have your debit or credit card on you.

Avoid Making Big Decisions

Ready to sign a new lease? Or a contract for a new job? Break up with bae or even get you a new bae? You might want to think twice. The lines of communication are blurred during this time, so it is easy to misinterpret or misread a contract. Ideally, you want to wait until Mercury retrograde is over, if you can, before making a big call. However, if you must, proceed with caution. Triple check every document that comes your way and think about how you could reverse this decision if needed after retrograde. It might seem like you’re being too careful and excessive, but it’s better to be safe than sorry. You don’t want to be committed to something, or someone, you hate.

Stay Flexible

@lauriehernandez / Instagram

Mercury retrograde is notorious for throwing plans off balance, but do not let that stop you from going out there and completing your goals or having fun. Misunderstandings can and will happen. The sooner you accept that, the better. It’s important to be able to adapt to any situation that arises. Make sure to create backup plans and be ready for anything.

Don’t Be Negative

Daria / MTV

You’re already frustrated and upset that life is not going the way you planned, but dwelling on the negative aspects of it will only make matters worse. If you stay mad about every little thing that happens, you’re not going to grow during this Mercury retrograde. So many things can go wrong because of Mercury retrograde pero la vida sigue. All you can do is brush off the haters and keep walking with your head high.

Think Before You Speak

@msaprilbecerra / Instagram

We don’t mean not to speak, we mean choose your words wisely. Think about what you are going to say before you open your mouth and say something you wouldn’t mean when we’re not in retrograde. Remember, during this time all forms of communication are disrupted. It’s important to be clear whenever you communicate with others. You don’t want situations to be misinterpreted and then have to deal with the consequences after.

Slow Down

@meniukis / Instagram

Even though you might be tempted to run out to chase the paletero, you should probably slow down when you hear the bell ringing outside. When you’re in a hurry, you run the risk of forgetting valuable belongings such as your wallet (you need cash to pay for those paletas!) or keys. Make sure to give yourself enough time to get ready for work or important events in general, double-check you have everything you need, and remember to lock your door.

Look To The Past

Instead of focusing on starting new projects or new relationships, look towards the past for guidance. Try finishing up projects that you had forgotten about or hang out with old friends. This is a time to reflect on what you’ve done in the past and learn from mistakes you have committed. It’s also a chance to get closure from people in your life.

Plan For The Future

Elena Koycheva on Unsplash

Mercury Retrograde is the perfect time to plan for the future. If you focus on the hard work now, during the retrograde,  you will see the fruits of your labor come to life once this period is over. Give your resume a new look. Do research on companies that you want to work for or places where you want to live and set your goals accordingly.

It might be tempting to put your life on hold until Mercury Retrograde is over, but you don’t have to. Don’t live the next couple of weeks in fear. Although it’s convenient to blame the shifting planet for everything that goes wrong, it’s not just bad luck. This is not the time to cut your bangs by yourself, (really, when is it ever?) but it is the perfect time to assess your life. Look at this as an opportunity to think back on how far you’ve come. If you’re not where you want to be, then take a moment to evaluate how you’re going to get there. Embrace this hectic time with open arms because you will come out stronger. Be open-minded to anything that life throws your way. You might be surprised to where it can take you.

Be sure to save this in your notes because this sh*t will be hitting the fan all over again from Oc. 31 to Nov. 1. 

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This Artist Has Been Breaking Barriers As A Non-Traditional Mariachi

Entertainment

This Artist Has Been Breaking Barriers As A Non-Traditional Mariachi

On a recent episode of ABC’s game show To Tell The Truth, three celebrity panelists were tasked to uncover the identity of a real mariachi singer.

Each contender embodied “non-traditional” attributes of mariachi culture either through physical appearance or language barriers, leaving the panelists stumped.

When it came time for the big reveal, with a humble smile 53-year-old Timoteo “El Charro Negro” stood up wowing everyone. Marveled by his talents, Timoteo was asked to perform unveiling his smooth baritone voice.

While not a household name in the U.S., his career spans over 25 years thriving on the catharsis of music.

Timoteo “El Charro Negro” performing “Chiquilla Linda” on Dante Night Show in 2017.

Originally from Dallas, Texas, Timoteo, born Timothy Pollard, moved to Long Beach, California with his family when he was eight years old. The move to California exposed Pollard to Latin culture, as the only Black family in a Mexican neighborhood.

As a child, he recalled watching Cantinflas because he reminded him of comedian Jerry Lewis, but musically he “got exposed to the legends by chance.”

“I was bombarded by all the 1960s, ’70s, and ’50s ranchera music,” Timoteo recalls to mitú.

The unequivocal passion mariachi artists like Javier Solis and Vicente Fernandez possessed heavily resonated with him.

“[The neighbors] always played nostalgic music, oldies but goodies, and that’s one thing I noticed about Mexicans,” Timoteo says. “They can be in their 20s but because they’ve grown up listening to the oldies it’s still very dear to them. That’s how they party.”

For as long as he can remember, Pollard “was born with the genetic disposition to love music,” knowing that his future would align with the arts.

After hearing Vicente Fernandez sing “Lástima Que Seas Ajena,” an awakening occurred in Pollard. While genres like hip-hop and rap were on the rise, Pollard’s passion for ranchera music grew. It was a moment when he realized that this genre best suited his big voice.

Enamored, Pollard began to pursue a career as a Spanish-language vocalist.

El Charro Negro
Photo courtesy of Timothy Pollard.

At 28, Timoteo began learning Spanish by listening and singing along to those artists he adored in his youth.

“When I decided that I wanted to be a mariachi, I didn’t think it was fair to exploit the culture and not understand the language,” he says. “If I’m going to sing, I need to be able to communicate with my audience and engage with them. I need to understand what I’m saying because it was about honor and respect.”

Pollard began performing local gigs after picking up the language in a matter of months. He soon attracted the attention of “Big Boy” Radio that adorned him the name Timoteo “El Charro Negro.”

Embellishing his sound to highlight his Black heritage, Pollard included African instruments like congas and bongos in his orchestra. Faintly putting his own spin on a niche genre, Pollard avoided over-saturating the genre’s sound early in his career.

Embraced by his community as a beloved mariachi, “El Charro Negro” still encountered race-related obstacles as a Black man in the genre.

“There are those [in the industry] who are not in the least bit thrilled to this day. They won’t answer my phone calls, my emails, my text messages I’ve sent,” he says. “The public at large hasn’t a problem with it, but a lot of the time it’s those at the helm of decision making who want to keep [the genre] exclusively Mexican.”

“El Charro Negro” persisted, slowly attracting fans worldwide while promoting a message of harmony through his music.

In 2007, 12 years into his career, Pollard received a golden ticket opportunity.

El Charro Negro
Pollard (left) seen with legendary Mexican artist Vicente Fernandez (right) in 2007. Photo courtesy of Timothy Pollard.

In a by-chance encounter with a stagehand working on Fernandez’s tour, Pollard was offered the chance to perform onstage. The singer was skeptical that the offer was legit. After all, what are the chances?

The next day Pollard went to his day job at the time and said, “a voice in my head, which I believe was God said, ‘wear your blue velvet traje tonight.'”

That evening Pollard went to a sold-out Stockton Area where he met his idol. As he walked on the stage, Pollard recalls Fernandez insisting that he use his personal mic and band to perform “De Que Manera Te Olvido.”

“[Fernandez] said he did not even want to join me,” he recollects about the show. “He just was kind and generous enough to let me sing that song on his stage with his audience.”

The crowd applauded thunderously, which for Pollard was a sign of good things to come.

El Charro Negro
Timoteo “El Charro Negro” with Don Francisco on Don Francisco Presenta in 2011. Photo courtesy of Timothy Pollard.

In 2010, he released his debut album “Me Regalo Contigo.” In perfect Spanish, Pollard sings with great conviction replicating the soft tones of old-school boleros.

Unraveling the rollercoaster of relationships, heart-wrenchingly beautiful ballads like “Me Regalo Contigo” and “Celos” are his most streamed songs. One hidden gem that has caught the listener’s attention is “El Medio Morir.”

As soon as the track begins it is unlike the others. Timoteo delivers a ’90s R&B love ballad in Spanish, singing with gumption as his riffs and belts encapsulate his unique sound and story.

Having appeared on shows like Sabado Gigante, Don Francisco Presenta, and Caso Cerrado in 2011, Timoteo’s career prospered.

Timoteo hasn’t released an album since 2010 but he keeps his passion alive. The singer has continued to perform, even during the Covid pandemic. He has high hopes for future success and original releases, choosing to not slow down from his destined musical journey.

“If God is with me, who can be against me? It may not happen in a quick period of time, but God will make my enemies my footstool,” he said.

“I’ve continued to be successful and do some of the things I want to do; maybe not in a particular way or in particular events, but I live in a very happy and fulfilled existence.”

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Exclusive: Luis Fonsi Talks Working with Rauw Alejandro, Christina Aguilera, and Demi Lovato

Entertainment

Exclusive: Luis Fonsi Talks Working with Rauw Alejandro, Christina Aguilera, and Demi Lovato

Luis Fonsi is kicking off 2021 with a new single. The Puerto Rican superstar premiered the music video for “Vacío” on Feb. 18 featuring rising Boricua singer Rauw Alejandro. The guys put a new spin on the classic “A Puro Dolor” by Son By Four.

Luis Fonsi throws it back to his románticas.

“I called Omar Alfanno, the writer of ‘A Puro Dolo,’ who is a dear friend,” Fonsi tells Latido Music. “I told him what my idea was [with ‘Vacío’] and he loved it. He gave me his blessing, so I wrote a new song around a few of those lines from ‘A Puro Dolor’ to bring back that nostalgia of those old romantic tunes that have been a part of my career as well. It’s a fresh production. It sounds like today, but it has that DNA of a true, old-school ballad.”

The world got to know Luis Fonsi through his global smash hit “Despacito” with Daddy Yankee in 2017. The remix with Canadian pop star Justin Bieber took the song to new heights. That was a big moment in Fonsi’s music career that spans over 20 years.

There’s more to Fonsi than “Despacito.”

Fonsi released his first album, the fittingly-titled Comenzaré, in 1998. While he was on the come-up, he got the opportunity of a lifetime to feature on Christina Aguilera’s debut Latin album Mi Reflejo in 2000. The two collaborated on “Si No Te Hubiera Conocido.” Luis Fonsi scored multiple Billboard Hot Latin Songs No. 1s in the years that followed and one of the biggest hits was “No Me Doy Por Vencido” in 2008. That was his career-defining romantic ballad.

“Despacito” remains the second most-viewed music video on YouTube with over 7.2 billion views. The hits did not stop there. Later in 2017, he teamed up with Demi Lovato for “Échame La Culpa,” which sits impressively with over 2 billion views.

He’s also appearing on The Voice next month.

Not only is Fonsi working on his new album, but also he’s giving advice to music hopefuls for the new season of The Voice that’s premiering on March 1. Kelly Clarkson tapped him as her Battle Advisor. In an exclusive interview, Fonsi talked with us about “Vacío,” The Voice, and a few of his greatest hits.

What was the experience like to work with Rauw Alejandro for “Vacío”?

Rauw is cool. He’s got that fresh sound. Great artist. Very talented. Amazing onstage. He’s got that great tone and delivery. I thought he had the perfect voice to fit with my voice in this song. We had talked about working together for awhile and I thought that this was the perfect song. He really is such a star. What he’s done in the last couple of years has been amazing. I love what he brought to the table on this song.

Now I want to go through some of your greatest hits. Do you remember working with Christina Aguilera for her Spanish album?

How could you not remember working with her? She’s amazing. That was awhile back. That was like 1999 or something like that. We were both starting out and she was putting out her first Spanish album. I got to sing a beautiful ballad called “Si No Te Hubiera Conocido.” I got to work with her in the studio and see her sing in front of the mic, which was awesome. She’s great. One of the best voices out there still to this day.

What’s one of your favorite memories of “No Me Doy Por Vencido”?

“No Me Doy Por Vencido” is one of the biggest songs in my career. I think it’s tough to narrow it down just to one memory. I think in general the message of the song is what sticks with me. The song started out as a love song, but it turned into an anthem of hope. We’ve used the song for different important events and campaigns. To me, that song has such a powerful message. It’s bigger than just a love song. It’s bringing hope to people. It’s about not giving up. To be able to kind of give [people] hope through a song is a lot more powerful than I would’ve ever imagined. It’s a very special song.

I feel the message is very relevant to the COVID-19 pandemic we’re living through.

Oh yeah! I wrote that song a long time ago with Claudia Brant, and during the first or second month of the lockdown when we were all stuck at home, we did a virtual writing session and we rewrote “No Me Doy Por Vencido.” Changing the lyrics, kind of adjusting them to this situation that we’re living now. I haven’t recorded it. I’ll do something with it eventually. It’s really cool. It still talks about love. It talks about reuniting. Like the light at the end of the tunnel. It has the hope and love backbone, but it has to do a lot with what we’re going through now.

What do you think of the impact “Despacito” made on the industry?

It’s a blessing to be a part of something so big. Again, it’s just another song. We write these songs and the moment you write them, you don’t really know what’s going to happen with them. Or sometimes you run into these surprises like “Despacito” where it becomes a global phenomenon. It goes No. 1 in places where Spanish songs had never been played. I’m proud. I’m blessed. I’m grateful to have worked with amazing people like Daddy Yankee. Like Justin Bieber for the remix and everyone else involved in the song. My co-writer Erika Ender. The producers Mauricio Rengifo and Andrés Torres. It was really a team effort and it’s a song that obviously changed my career forever.

What was the experience like to work with Demi Lovato on “Echáme La Culpa”?

She’s awesome! One of the coolest recording sessions I’ve ever been a part of. She really wanted to sing in Spanish and she was so excited. We did the song in Spanish and English, but it was like she was more excited about the Spanish version. And she nailed it! She nailed it from the beginning. There was really not much for me to say to her. I probably corrected her once or twice in the pronunciation, but she came prepared and she brought it. She’s an amazing, amazing, amazing vocalist.

You’re going to be a battle advisor on The Voice. What was the experience like to work with Kelly Clarkson?

She’s awesome. What you see is what you get. She’s honest. She’s funny. She’s talented. She’s humble and she’s been very supportive of my career. She invited me to her show and it speaks a lot that she wanted me to be a part of her team as a Battle Advisor for the new season. She supports Latin music and I’m grateful for that. She’s everything you hope she would be. She’s the real deal, a true star, and just one of the coolest people on this planet.

What can we expect from you in 2021?

A lot of new music. Obviously, everything starts today with “Vacío.” This is literally the beginning of what this new album will be. I’ve done nothing but write and record during the last 10 months, so I have a bunch of songs. Great collaborations coming up. I really think the album will be out probably [in the] third or fourth quarter this year. The songs are there and I’m really eager for everybody to hear them.

Read: We Finally Have A Spanish-Language Song As The Most Streamed Song Of All Time

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