Ricky Martin, Residente, Bad Bunny Debut New Song 'Cántalo' - Rolling Stone
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Ricky Martin, Residente, Bad Bunny Debut New Song ‘Cántalo’ Ahead of Latin Grammys

New song is a tribute to salsa great Héctor Lavoe

Ricky Martin, Residente and Bad Bunny — or, the trio who helped take down Puerto Rico’s ex-Governor Ricardo Rosselló — emerged with a new single on Monday night titled “Cántalo,” or “Sing It.”

The Borinquen chapter of the New Latino Gang will convene once more to perform the new song live Thursday night at the 20th Annual Latin Grammy Awards.

A jubilant mélange of salsa, reggaeton and hip-hop, the track takes after another Puerto Rican luminary: the great salsero, Héctor Lavoe. Inspired by his 1974 performance of the song “Mi Gente,” which took place at the legendary Fania All Stars concert in Zaire, “Cántalo” was composed by a crack team of Latinx hitmakers, including Martin, Residente, Bad Bunny, Danay Suárez, Rubén Blades and Johnny Pacheco.

“Cántalo” has a fascinating story,” Martin explained to Puerto Rican newspaper El Nuevo Día in Spanish. “Fania [Records] gave me the masters of ‘Mi Gente’ to work on this song, which is a very big responsibility and that fills my heart with pride.”

“The collaboration in this song continues to show the union through music and within a circle of different generations that represent our culture and heritage,” said Residente, who co-produced the song with frequent collaborator Jeffrey “Trooko” Peñalva. “It was an incredible experience to integrate ‘Mi Gente,’ a song with a rich history from its creation in Africa to its global impact.”

“I have always wanted to unite generations through my music,” Martin added. “I have to give a lot of credit to Residente, a great producer and lyricist, and of course to Bad Bunny, the fresh face of the genre and a person who, being very young, has very important things to say. We have many things in common and that’s where magic is born. I am really excited to have been able to collaborate with artists as talented and special as they are.”

The 20th Annual Latin Grammy Awards will take place Thursday, November 14th at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas. Hosted by Martin, as well as Rosalyn Sánchez and Paz Vega, the show will air live on Univision at 8 p.m. EST/5 p.m. PST.

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