Photo: Mario Alzate
More Than 20 Years In, Luis Fonsi Vows To Never Stop Bringing The Romance With 'Ley De Gravedad': "It's How I See Life"
The Puerto Rican singer has delivered countless love songs throughout his career, encapsulating in his most affectionate album to date, ‘Ley De Gravedad.’ Fonsi reflects on his love-filled legacy, including one of the biggest Latin hits of all time.
Five years ago, Luis Fonsi helped bring Latin pop back into the mainstream with his crossover smash, the Daddy Yankee-assisted "Despacito." But the seductive love song was certainly not Fonsi's first romantic hit — the Puerto Rican star has built his 23-year career on heartfelt songs, and he's continuing to spread the love with Ley De Gravedad.
Fonsi's 11th studio album, Ley De Gravedad is arguably his most romantic album yet, with 16 tracks that demonstrate his knack for writing music that touches the listener's heart. The album explores the many sides of love, whether he's crooning about feeling completed by his other half in "Vacío" (which interpolates Son By Four's "A Puro Dolor") or trying to win back the love of his life in the soaring "Nuestra Balada." And with the charming title track, Fonsi gives Newton's Law of Universal Gravitation an amorous application: "If something has to happen, it will happen / Let's not fight with the Law of Gravity," he sings about a blossoming romance.
Like "Despacito," Ley De Gravedad sees Fonsi both collaborating with Latin superstars and pushing the boundaries of Latin pop. The five-time GRAMMY nominee features some of the genre's newer hitmakers, Rauw Alejandro and Sebastián Yatra, while also championing veterans like Nicky Jam and Farruko. Sonically, he explores electronic music with the alluring "Dolce"; basks in bachata with his fellow Puerto Rican star, Myke Towers, on "Bésame"; and creates a tropical-infused getaway in "Vacaciones" with Manuel Turizo.
On the eve of the album's release, Fonsi chatted with GRAMMY.com about the "powerful" meaning behind his latest project's name, the legacy of "Despacito," and why he'll always be an artist who brings the love.
What inspired the name Ley De Gravedad?
Ley De Gravedad means "law of gravity." The official definition of law of gravity is that law of attraction or that force of attraction. The big mass attracts the smaller mass. To me, that's a parallel to love and what music is all about: the attraction.
It's attraction and it's connection and it's force. Sometimes you can control it and most of the time you can't. Sometimes you don't want to fall in love but you do. Music is sort of that invisible line, that connection.
That's what we try to get to. We try to break that fourth wall and to connect with the audience in a certain way, and to have people really live these lyrics and melodies that we're trying to share with the world.
I just thought it was a powerful name. Obviously there's a song in the album called "Ley De Gravedad." I just thought it was a great title to wrap up two to three years worth of songwriting and songs in general.
This album has a lot of love songs. Where does that inspiration come from to write such romantic songs?
I'm a romantic dude. I'm a romantic guy. I feel it. It doesn't come [to me] forced. It's just kind of how I see life. I try not to be cliché romantic. I try to be honest and to be very conversational and to talk about situations that happen to all of us.
I don't overthink songs. I don't go online and look for a Thesaurus to look for big words. I say what I feel. When people hear a song one time, I want them to really just vibe with it. That's how I base my songwriting.
Sometimes they're very personal songs. It's really me. It's something that I'm going through or a love letter for something I'm really passionate about. Sometimes they're just kind of random stories that for some reason I woke up with that idea in my head, or with that word, or that melody in my head.
Doing this for 23 years, I learned that you just don't overthink stuff. You just go with the flow. And if it works, it works. You don't analyze it too much. When you start overthinking things is when you kind of get caught in this weird alley of darkness. I wrote probably over 200 to 250 songs to get to these 16. There's still songs out there that I'm proud of that I might use in the future. It's about the journey, not the destination. It doesn't get any more cliché than that, but it is what it is.
What's the story behind your new single, "Dolce"?
A few months back, I got invited to go to this really cool fashion show in Venice, the Dolce & Gabbana fashion show. I'm a big fashion lover. I got to go there with my wife and we had a really cool time. I came back inspired by everything that I saw, and I created my own parallel story to that. It's a fun, sexy track and I named it "Dolce."
It's got almost a little bit of an electronic Latin feel. It is a little bit more electronic sounding than the previous stuff that I've done; it was really cool. I got to do this fun video and I actually had my wife be the star of the video. This time I just felt it was the right call. She was meant to be a part of this video, so I'm proud of it.
You've further explored EDM sounds by collaborating with acts like Clean Bandit, R3HAB, and Alok. What's that experience been like?
I try to expand my horizons and work with all different kinds of genres and languages. You learn so much to be able to just vibe and mix their stuff with your stuff. You never really know what's going to happen.
I always use the parallel of food — you mix ingredients, and sometimes you get this really cool flavor out of these two things that you never mixed before. Sometimes you're like, "Nope, got to throw that out." But when they work and it mixes in a very natural way, I think it's great. And again, I want to spread my Latin heritage to as much music as I can, so people get to really vibe with what we do.
I always love the Latin flavor that you add to those collaborations.
It's like putting adobo on everything. [Laughs.] You know a little adobo on everything always works. That's what Latin music is.
You also teamed up with Myke Towers on "Bésame." How was it working with him?
He's awesome. One of the most talented artists I've worked with in any language and in any genre. It was the best, the fastest, and the most productive recording session I've ever had with another artist. He was in and out in 20 minutes, without even coming prepared. He came without an idea, and wrote it then and there.
I saw it, I felt it. He's a true artist. He's got very different styles. He's got his more reggaeton style. He's got his more trap style. He's got his more aggressive and his more melodic [style] and he knows how to fit into every track in a different way. I'm really proud of this track. I can't say enough about how impressed I was to work with him.
Before "Despacito," one of your biggest love songs was 2008's "No Me Doy Por Vencido." It has more than 400 million streams between Spotify and YouTube combined. How does it feel to see that song still connecting with so many people?
That was a song that gave me a lot of beautiful memories. It was Billboard's [Latin] Song of the Decade for [the 2000s]. Funny enough, the next decade, the [Latin] Song of the Decade was "Despacito," so I was able to have two songs in two different decades that were quite important and that are quite different.
"No Me Doy Por Vencido" to this day is one of my most treasured compositions. It's a song that I've used for many positive campaigns. It's a song that's been an anthem of hope for different things — for cancer, for mental health, for many other things. It's been beautiful how that song has evolved and grown old with me. To this day when I sing it on stage, it hits me in a good place.
Speaking of "Despacito," it's been five years since the song came out. What do you think about the impact that song had on the world?
Five years is kind of a long time, but it still feels really fresh. I always tell people it hasn't really sunk in the impact that this song has had on Latin music and on the history of Latin music.
I don't dwell on it too much. Sometimes you read stuff, or somebody talks about it, and that's when you realize, "Wow, I was part of something that will go down in history."
Obviously, I'm grateful, but on the same token, I don't want to dwell on it. I'm blessed. I'm happy that I was a part of it. I'm grateful for everybody that was involved in it. It wouldn't have gotten to where it got without the help of many people and now let's just keep doing it. Let's keep riding this wave.
How did you feel to see "Despacito" be very successful in countries that typically don't speak Spanish?
I think at the end of the day, that's what I'm most proud of — how it sort of broke the language barrier. I wish that I could sit here and tell you that it was my master plan, that I knew all along that that was going to happen, but I didn't.
It was just a song that I sat down and wrote one afternoon with my friend Erika Ender. It was just a song that I later showed to this artist called Daddy Yankee, who just happens to be the biggest reggaeton artist in the world. And the rest is history.
It was the right time, the right beat, the right collaboration, and the right remix with another guy called Justin Bieber. I don't know if you've heard of him. He happens to be a big pop star. [Laughs.]
Sometimes God just shines a light on something, and it guides you. I'm a big believer of that. What I'm most proud of is just that — it's a song that represents my heritage, my language, and the love of my island, Puerto Rico. It has that swag, that thing, that sabor that we carry in our blood. It's a celebration of all of that.
Along with Justin, you've collaborated with several pop stars, like Demi Lovato and Christina Aguilera. Because of that, you have a lot of fans in the LGBTQ+ community. Do you have a message for those fans?
Absolutely! I think music is about coming together. It's about celebrating equality. It doesn't matter race, religion, or sexual orientation. We're here to all celebrate each other, respect each other. That's always been my message. That's why I always try to leave positive footprints with everything I do and in every message that I deliver.
As songwriters and artists, it's very important to share that positive message, especially with the younger generation. Maybe because I'm a father now with two young kids, but you see how important it is and how powerful words are and how powerful music is. How big of a stage we're on.
We have to take advantage every time we can to inspire and unite. That's definitely the direction that I'm going in. It's a beautiful opportunity to have to communicate [through music]. I hope that I can leave positive energy behind.
Photo: C Flanigan/Getty Images
Luis Fonsi To Maluma: Who Will Win Record Of The Year Latin GRAMMY?
Cast your vote. Who will voters choose for Record Of The Year at the 18th Latin GRAMMY Awards?
Including the likes of Shakira and Carlos Vives to Natalia Lafourcade, Marc Anthony, Jesse & Joy, and Alejandro Sanz, the previous Latin GRAMMY winners for Record Of The Year reads like a who's who of Latin music. This year's nominees are no different.
With Rubén Blades' sensual "La Flor De La Canela," Luis Fonsi featuring Daddy Yankee's song of the summer "Despacito," Residente's impactful "Guerra," Ricky Martin with Maluma's Vente Pa' Ca," and Jorge Drexler's "El Surco," among others, this year's class of 18th Latin GRAMMY Awards nominees for Record Of The Year is loaded.
Which song do you think will take home the Latin GRAMMY for Record Of The Year? Cast your vote below.
Photo: Thaddaeus McAdams/WireImage.com
2018 GRAMMYs: Who's Performing?
Find out which of your favorite artists are performing on the 60th GRAMMY Awards on Sunday, Jan. 28
The 60th GRAMMY Awards celebration in New York is quickly approaching. From rolling out the red carpet to tuning the guitars and adjusting the lights at Madison Square Garden, the Recording Academy is getting ready for the big milestone installment of Music's Biggest Night. But how about the performers?
Spanning multiple genres, including pop, rock, hip-hop, R&B, country, and more, this year's lineup of GRAMMY performers — many of them current nominees or past winners — will make for three-and-a-half hours of must-see television.
Without further ado, here is the list of performers for the 60th GRAMMYs.
- Alessia Cara, Khalid and Logic
- Brothers Osborne, Maren Morris and Eric Church (Route 91 Harvest Festival tribute)
- Childish Gambino
- Gary Clark Jr. and Jon Batiste (Chuck Berry and Fats Domino tribute)
- Luis Fonsi and Daddy Yankee with Zuleyka Rivera
- Emmylou Harris and Chris Stapleton
- Elton John and Miley Cyrus
- Lady Gaga
- Kendrick Lamar
- Little Big Town
- Patti LuPone and Ben Platt (Broadway tribute)
- Rihanna, DJ Khaled and Bryson Tiller
- Bruno Mars and Cardi B
- Sam Smith
Hosted by James Corden, the 60th GRAMMY Awards will take place at Madison Square Garden in New York on Jan. 28, airing live on CBS from 7:30–11 p.m. ET/4:30–8 p.m. PT.
Luis Fonsi & Daddy Yankee in "Despacito"
What Was YouTube's Most-Streamed Music Video Of The Decade?
"Despacito" by Luis Fonsi and Daddy Yankee earns the spot of the most-streamed music video of all time with over 6.5 billion views to date
YouTube has released data for the most streamed music videos of all time on its platform. Not surprisingly, Luis Fonsi's and Daddy Yankee's huge 2017 Latin GRAMMY-winning hit, "Despacito," earns the spot of the most-streamed music video of all time with over 6.5 billion (!) views to date.
To be clear, this is the original version, not the Justin Bieber-assisted remix, although the pop sensation also makes the top 10 list, at No. 6, for his 2015 bop "Sorry." The Purpose track earns the spot with over 3.2 billion views. In fact, each of the top 10 videos has racked up over two billion views.
Related: Who Ruled Music Streaming In 2019?
The second most-viewed music videos on YouTube is one of the other catchy-as-hell, inescapable hits of 2017: Ed Sheeran's GRAMMY-winning "Shape Of You," which has over 4.5 billion views to date. Another one of the British pop star's GRAMMY-winning songs, 2014's "Thinking Out Loud," also makes the list, at No. 10 with over 2.8 billion video views.
As for the third and fourth spots, we have 2015's "See You Again" by Wiz Khalifa featuring Charlie Puth, a GRAMMY-nominated song from the Furious 7 Soundtrack, and 2014's GRAMMY-winning bop "Uptown Funk" by Mark Ronson featuring Bruno Mars. These two music videos have over 4.3 billion and over 3.7 views, respectively. Fifth place goes to PSY's 2012 meme-ready viral hit, "GANGNAM STYLE," at over 3.4 billion video views.
The seventh most video of all time goes to the song that allegedly prompted a stranger to throw sugar at Adam Levine's face, Maroon 5's GRAMMY-nominated hit "Sugar." The 2015 track's visual has over three billion views on YouTube and is followed by Katy Perry's 2013 GRAMMY-nominated empowerment anthem, "Roar" at over 2.9 million views. Finally, the number nine spot goes to OneRepublic's 2013 barn-stomping pop hit, "Counting Stars."
The data, which YouTube shared via a press release, broke out the top music videos by the last four decades, based on the year they were originally released because, of course, YouTube has only been around since 2004. While the aforementioned top 10 videos of the 2010s were also the top 10 videos of all time, the top music videos of the 2000s, 1990s and 1980s also had some interesting finds.
The No. 1 song of the 2010s is Axel F's "Crazy Frog" at over 1.9 billion views, surpassing Linkin Park's Numb," Lady Gaga's "Bad Romance" and Taylor Swift's "You Belong To Me," which followed chronologically on that decade chart. Guns N' Roses take the number one spots for both the 1990s and 1980s list, with "November Rain" topping the former and "Sweet Child O' Mine" the latter.
An honorable mention goes to "Baby Shark Dance," the kid's song that was released in 2016 by South Korean company Pinkfong and went viral earlier this year. The original video (not to be confused with the many spinoffs or official EDM remix by JAUZ) has earned more views than "Uptown Funk." Baby Shark's family takes the number five spot of the most viewed videos of all time (music or otherwise) list on YouTube. Don't worry, Fonsi and Yankee are still at the top of this all-content list, so they don't have to worry about any hungry baby sharks—for now, at least.
Photo: Alexander Tamargo/WireImage.com
18th Latin GRAMMY Performers: Bad Bunny, Alejandro Sanz & More
First performers announced for The Biggest Night in Latin Music; actors Jaime Camil and Roselyn Sánchez to host 18th Latin GRAMMY Awards live from Las Vegas on Nov. 16
Current nominees J Balvin, Bad Bunny, Flor De Toloache, Luis Fonsi, Juanes, Mon Laferte, Natalia Lafourcade, Maluma, Residente, and Sofía Reyes are among the first artists announced to perform on the 18th Latin GRAMMY Awards.
Mexican actor/singer Jaime Camil and Puerto Rican singer/songwriter and actress Roselyn Sánchez will host The Biggest Night in Latin Music on the Univision Network Nov. 16 from 8–11 p.m. ET/PT (7 p.m. Central) at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas.
This year's top nominee is Residente with nine nominations. Also near the top of the field are Maluma with seven nominations, Shakira with six, and Kevin Jiménez ADG, Juanes and Mon Laferte with five each. "Despacito," by Luis Fonsi featuring Daddy Yankee, earned four nominations.
A limited number of tickets for the 18th Latin GRAMMY Awards are available for purchase through www.axs.com.