Entertainment

Yo-Yo Ma Sends Message Of Unity By Playing Cello On Both Sides Of US-Mexico Border


World-renowned cellist Yo-Yo Ma is most known for his musical talents. The 63-year-old Ma recently brought his cello skills to the U.S.-Mexico border to make a statement about global unity. The musical performance was a part of an event – called Day of Action, celebrating the relationship between Laredo, Texas, and Nuevo Laredo, Mexico. For Ma, the performance went beyond just music but a call to action urging people to “build bridges, not walls.”

The performance is part of Ma’s Bach Project, where he performs music by Sebastian Bach in various locations around the world.

Ma played Bach’s Suite No. 1 in a park across to the Juarez-Lincoln International Bridge, one of the bridges that connects both U.S. and Mexican cities. The bridges are significant not just for where they’re located but their role in U.S-Mexico relations.

According to the San Antonio Express-News, 37 percent of the $612 billion in exports and imports between the U.S. and Mexico last year came through Laredo’s three international bridges. The bridges are also one of many ports of entries along the border where asylum-seekers and other immigrants can go to request entry in the U.S.

“As you all know, as you did and do and will do, in culture, we build bridges, not walls,” Ma said in a speech at his performance. “I’ve lived my life at the borders. Between cultures. Between disciplines. Between musics. Between generations.”

When performing on the Mexico side, Ma played the same songs and gave a similar speech on that end. Despite having a translator for him, Ma tried his best to speak Spanish to the crowd.

Many at the performance couldn’t help but feel inspired my Ma’s work.

Mateo Bailey, 16, who lives in San Antonio, also plays the cello and is the son of Grammy award-winning cellist Zuill Bailey. He told NPR News that Ma’s message connected to him because of his Mexican-American background.

“I’m half-Mexican as well as half-American,” Bailey told NPR. “For him to connect cello with what’s happening in the world is like, it’s a cultural bridge that was just built, and it’s amazing.”

For Ma, the performance is a reflection of what he wants to see in this world during divided times. Music is universal to so many people and is a way various different cultures unite as one.

“We live in a world of boundless possibility, but we also face daunting challenges, even to our very survival,” Ma says about his Bach Project. “I believe that during times of stress, confusion, and insecurity, we should share sources that offer comfort, purpose, and meaning. Bach does that. When his music touches us, it reconnects us to our common humanity.”

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The Nominations For The Billboard Latin Music Awards Are Out And Here’s Who Made The List

Entertainment

The Nominations For The Billboard Latin Music Awards Are Out And Here’s Who Made The List

badbunnypr / ozuna / Instagram

The nominees for the 2020 Billboard Latin Music Awards are out and some of your faves are claiming several spots on the list. Bad Bunny and Ozuna are leading the pack with 14 nominations each. The two reggaetoneros claimed nominations for the coveted Artists of the Year award. All four nominees for Artist of the Year are male. Here the artists nominated for this year’s Billboard Latin Music Awards.

First, let’s breakdown the nominees for Artist of the Year.

Bad Bunny

Bad Bunny had an exceptional 2019. The Puerto Rican artist teamed up with Colombian superstar J Balvin on the collaborative album “Oasis.” The album brought us hits like “Que Pretendes” and “La Canción.” The reggae star also become politically active this year joining other Puerto Rican celebrities to travel to the Caribbean island to participate in protests against former Governor Ricardo Rosselló and Rosselló’s proposed anti-LGBTQ legislation.

J Balvin

The Colombian music star has been everywhere this year. Balvin not only partnered with Bad Bunny for collaborative album “Oasis,” he released a slew of new songs in 2019. The singer teamed up with Maluma to create “Qué Pena” and we spent most of last year jamming out to that single. Balvin is in tied in second place with Daddy Yankee with 12 nominations.

Ozuna

Despite a longterm scandal involving extortion and a sex tape, Ozuna kept things going and delivered high power music last year. The Puerto Rican singer joined Karol G, Anuel AA, Daddy Yankee, and J Balvin on “China,” which has garnered more than 1 billion views on YouTube.

Romeo Santos

Romeo Santos spent 2019 collabing with so many different artists. His year of collaborations includes “Me Quedo” with Zacarias Ferreira and “ileso” with Teodoro Reyes. Santos has been nominated for five other awards including Canción del Año, Streaming for “Ella Quiere Beber” with Anuel AA, Top Latin Album, Artista del Año, Masculino, Categoria Tropical, Canción Tropical del Año for “Aullando” with Wisin and Yandel, and Álbum Tropical del Año for “Utopia.”

Here is a full list of nominees in the top categories for the 2020 Billboard Latin Music Awards.

Artista del Año / Artist of the Year:

Bad Bunny
J Balvin
Ozuna
Romeo Santos

Artista del Año, Debut / Artist of the Year, New:

Jhay Cortez
Manuel Turizo
Paulo Londra
Sech

Gira del Año / Tour of the Year:

Bad Bunny
Chayanne
Jennifer Lopez
Marc Anthony

Artista del Año, Redes Sociales / Social Artist of the Year

Anuel AA
Becky G
Daddy Yankee
Lali

Artista Crossover del Año / Crossover Artist of the Year

DJ Snake
Drake
Katy Perry
Snow

Check out the full list of nominees by clicking here.

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J.Lo Speaks Up About The Super Bowl Halftime Show And How She Wants Girls To Raise Their Voices

Entertainment

J.Lo Speaks Up About The Super Bowl Halftime Show And How She Wants Girls To Raise Their Voices

jlo / shakira / Instagram

The J.Lo and Shakira halftime show at Super Bowl LIV was electric, powerful, empowering, and contagious. The two Latina performers gave Super Bowl viewers and audience the show of a lifetime. Latin pride was at the forefront of this year’s halftime show and there was also a strong political message because Latinos live in terrifying times.

J.Lo and Shakira used part of their halftime show to give a voice to the voiceless in the Latino and immigrant communities.

During J.Lo’s performance, her daughter Emme started “Let’s Get Loud” and the imagery struck a nerve with some viewers. Litter in front of the stage were children in orbed cages. Many have speculated that the children are a nod at the Trump administration’s immigration policies that forced children into cages and separated families.

The mother and daughter duo then covered “Born In The USA” by Bruce Springsteen and J.Lo flashed a Puerto Rican flag.

The Puerto Rican people, who are Americans, have been let down by the current administration as they try to recover from Hurricane Maria. Now, the island is recovering from devastating earthquakes. The Trump administration has actively cut funding to Medicaid in Puerto Rico as more and more people are reliant on the assistance.

J.Lo shared a video on Instagram right before the performance and included a rallying call to all Latinas and young girls around the world.

The global pop star wanted to use her performance at Super Bowl LIV performance to give people a chance to raise their voices. In a time where children are in cages, women are losing healthcare rights, and vulnerable communities are under attack around the world, these moments matter.

The Super Bowl LIV halftime show’s message is resonating far and wide.

The image of Emme “locked” in a cage while singing “Let’s Get Loud” caught everyone’s attention. Her voice, accompanied by a choir of children behind her, gave viewers a striking visual of children in cages.

Some pointed to other elements of the performance that referenced the administration’s treatment of migrants.

Credit: @HelloOElaine / Twitter

There were so many elements of the half time show that people pointed to as reminiscent of the policies devastating migrant families. The lights behind the performers interlocked in the pattern of a chainlink fence we have all seen along the border.

Some people were very much bothered by the strong Latino representation at the Super Bowl.

Pobercitos. Who knew that strong Latinas on stage showing their brown bodies and Latin dancing would trigger them?

Some people are showing the double standard that exists among performers at the Super Bowl.

Women, especially Black and brown women, are often treated to this double standard. Somehow, dancing as a brown or Black woman is overly sexual when white men are not subjected to the same scrutiny.

To top it off, let’s not forget that the Super Bowl was in Miami, a Latino enclave and the halftime performance was representative of that culture.

Credit: @ExtraLars / Twitter

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