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Luis Fonsi To Drop First Album Since "Despacito"
Latin GRAMMY winner and past GRAMMY nominee Luis Fonsi, who became a household name following the smash success of "Despacito" in 2017, will be releasing his long-anticipated follow-up studio album on Feb. 1. Vida is his first LP since 8 in 2014, and will give the world some new Fonsi music, as well an album home for his biggest hits.
The album's track list reveals 15 songs, including the Puerto Rican singer's hot collabs of recent memory: both versions of "Despacito," the original featuring Latin GRAMMY winner and past GRAMMY nominee Daddy Yankee and the insanely viral remix featuring Yankee plus Latin GRAMMY and GRAMMY winner Justin Bieber. Some of the other previously released collabs are "Échame La Culpa" featuring past GRAMMY nominee Demi Lovato, "Imposible" with Colombian reggaeton singer and Latin GRAMMY nominee Ozuna and "Calypso (Remix)" featuring Latin GRAMMY winner and one of the leading ladies of reggaeton Karol G.
The new album will not only let listeners catch up on all of Fonsi's collabs but will also share new solo songs. As Billboard reports (and the tracklist hints), the majority of the lyrics are sung in Spanish, yet two versions of "Sola," bookend the album with a Spanish-language version to open and the English version to close.
Billboard describes the opening track as "a mid-tempo, sultry R&B tinged jam over sparse arrangements that highlight Fonsi's fine voice from the get-go." They also highlight the diversity of sounds a on the new album, with some more upbeat, urbano-style tracks in the vein of "Despacito," and some romantic baladas, more in the style of Fonsi's earlier recordings.
While to some music fans, especially those who predominantly listen to English-language music, Fonsi may have appeared to ascend to the spotlight out of nowhere with the release of "Despacito (Remix)" in April 2017. In reality, the Puerto Rican singer has been releasing music in Spanish since 1998 when he released his debut album, Comenzare.
His eight albums released-to-date saw success in the Latin music market, with several songs topping Billboard's Hot Latin Songs chart and several making it to the all-genre Hot 100, including "Nada Es Para Siempre" back in 2005 and "No Me Doy Por Vencido" in 2008, both of which hit No. 1 on the Latin chart.
He released his fourth studio album, Fight The Feeling, and only English-language one, in 2002, following the crossover success of other Latin music artists releasing music in English, such as GRAMMY/Latin GRAMMY winners Ricky Martin with "Livin' La Vida Loca" in 1999 and Shakira with "Whenever, Wherever" in 2001.
When Fonsi released "Despacito" with reggaeton legend Daddy Yankee, followed by the remix version with Bieber, the trio had a runaway hit. The song spent 16 weeks at No. 1 on the Hot 100 and 52 weeks total on the chart and was the most streamed song of 2017 with 1.3 billion streams.
The song earned Fonsi his first Latin GRAMMY wins at the 18th Latin GRAMMY Awards, where the original version won: Record Of The Year, Song Of The Year,and Best Short Form Music Video, and the remix won Best Urban Fusion/Performance, also giving Bieber his first Latin GRAMMY win.
At the 60th GRAMMY Awards the "Despacito (Remix)" earned the Fonsi, Bieber and Yankee three nominations, for Record Of The Year, Song Of The Year and Best Pop Duo/Group Performance. Following the night of the show, for which Fonsi and Yankee performed their original song on stage, it saw a huge spike in downloads, a 263 percent climb from the prior day. The remix also saw a rise in sales at that time in January 2018, following its huge 2017 end-of-year streaming numbers.
While Fonsi may not have been able to ride the Latin music crossover wave in the early 00's, he is often credited for the renewed and widened interest in Latin music across markets following the success of "Despactio." It feels like the world is ready to step into Fonsi's new Vida.