Reggaeton superstar makes Bay Area Impacto

Girls love him for his rugged good looks and catchy tunes. Guys dismiss him as too pretty or too studio-manufactured. Whether he evolves into a Latino P Diddy or a brown Vanilla Ice remains to be seen.Studio musician Raymond Ayala is now multiplatinum seller Daddy Yankee and he just wrapped up a tour of the Southwest with a show on October 5th in the Bay Area. Hopeful and I braved cold temps and Friday evening 101 traffic to dance to reggaeton’s crossover star.

After sitting through a dozen showings of a hilarious Spanish language Orbit gum commercial(sure to make you a fan of merengue music), the show opened with the requisite military themed video on the big screen(yes, another shoot me now moment, courtesy of brown boys in camo). Then Daddy emerged, looking resplendent in black and white Coogi sweater, metallic wash jeans, bright white sneaks, and diamond jewelry. He was joined by a portly rapper, a DJ, and a coed sextet of dancers. The night was a danceathon and singalong as Yankee performed his past hits(apparently I really can belly dance to “Mirame”) and current tracks(my favorite number was when the dancers changed into Battlestar Galactica Cylon costumes for the futuristic “Impacto”). He rapped and sang live, sounding very much like El General, and even improvised to dancehall. He also gave props to every Latino nation and shared anecdotes about songwriting. Despite his critics, Daddy puts on a great show and keeps the fans on their feet. I’m proud he’s representing us.

One of the most played from my iPod

One of my favorite reggaeton songs ever is the dynamic duo of reggaetonero with the most street cred, my cousin Tego Calderón, and Venezuelan salsa legend, Oscar D’León, on a remake of D’Leon’s “Llorarás,” “Llora Llora” from Calderón’s El Subestimado. The original song is a salsa about a romance gone wrong and the original lyrics serve as the refrain between Tego’s rhymes on the reggaeton cut.

Sé que tu no quieres
que yo a ti te quiera
siempre tu me esquivas
de alguna manera
si te busco por aqui
me sales por alla
lo unico que yo quiero
no me hagas sufrir mas

Por tu mal comportamiento
te vas a arrepentir
bien caro tendrás que pagar
todo mi sufrimiento
llorarás y llorarás
sin nadie que te consuele
asi te darás tu cuenta
que si te engañan duele

Y despues vendrás a mi
pidiendome perdón
pero ya mi corazón
no se acuerda mas de ti
llorarás y llorarás
sin nadie que te consuele
asi te darás tu cuenta
que si te engañan duele

oye tu llorarás
nadie te comprenderá
todo lo malo
que hiciste
oye mira lo pagarás
y para que
tu vas a ir a otro lado