J Balvin schooled audiences nationwide Tuesday night with a live performance of his new single, “Reggaeton,” live on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon. Jennifer Lopez and Milo Ventimiglia also appeared as guest stars. “We have the three J’s with us,” said Fallon in a teaser trailer before the show. “J Lo, J Balvin and me, J Fallon. It’s a brand new show. ¡No te la pierdas! (Don’t miss it!)”
Gently evoking Tego Calderon’s 2002 classic, “Pa’ Que Retozen” — chopped and screwed by dynamic duo Tainy and Sky Rompiendo — J Balvin glides from verse to verse with ease, dropping a people’s history of the oft-contentious and rapidly evolving genre known as reggaeton. Rocking highlighter-green hair and a fashionably slim pair of sunglasses, Balvin shouts out those who paved the way for his own success, such as Calderon and Daddy Yankee. The original video also flashes images of Balvin’s most frequent collaborators, like Nicky Jam and Zion y Lennox. “God bless reggaeton,” says Balvin in utmost reverence.
Balvin’s latest album, Vibras, won Best Urban Album at the 2018 Latin Grammy Awards in November. Although snubbed in seven other categories that night, the 33-year-old MC graciously dedicated his win “to everyone who is representing [urban genres] and fighting for it — even if at times we have been discriminated against. But here we are, fighting and showing that there are people with a lot of talent, that reggaeton has saved lives. Reggaeton has motivated people to leave the streets and focus on having better dreams and that it’s worth dreaming … We are the future of music.”
Balvin is also nominated for Song of the Year at the 2019 Grammys, alongside New Latino Gang-sters Cardi B and Bad Bunny for their 2018 smash hit, “I Like It.” The song became both Balvin and Bunny’s first Number One single on the Billboard Hot 100.