Luis Figueroa “como pez en el agua” in new salsa album


Salsa is giving great satisfaction to Luis Figueroa, who has just released the first part of his new self-titled album, endorsed by Marc Anthony as a young promise of the tropical genre.

The 32-year-old singer-songwriter will perform on June 11 at the Barclays Center as part of the New York Salsa Festival, and the next day he will be honored as a “Rising Star” in the emblematic Puerto Rico National Parade of the same city. This year he will also appear as a musical guest on the US tour of El Gran Combo de Puerto Rico for his 60th anniversary.

But Figueroa, who made himself known in pop music and has also recorded reggaeton, confesses that he did not always want the responsibility of carrying the salsa flag despite the fact that it runs in his blood as the nephew of singer Anthony Colón and “pupil” by Marc Anthony, whose Magnus label represents him.

It was pressure that I think I didn’t want to get at first,” he said in a recent interview with The Associated Press via video call from Miami. “But I always had that love for salsa, only that I did see that responsibility as a bit big at the moment where I feel that everyone wanted me to do salsa.”

The Philadelphia-born singer-songwriter of Puerto origin says that he grew up listening to salsa, merengue and bachata before going to study in Boston at the prestigious Berklee College of Music, where he learned “different genres of music, other things that opened up my music library for me. ”, he expressed

In 2021 he released two albums: “Canciones del alma”, mostly pop, and the urban “1807”.

However, the first included a version of “Hasta el solRican  de hoy” in homage to his uncle — the vocalist of Edgar Joel y su Orquesta who in 1993 popularized the original ballad by Mexican Tito Livio in a salsa version — with which he reached the No. 1 on Billboard’s Tropical Airplay chart. (Another song from the same album, the ballad “Si tú me dice come,” made the Top 10 on the same list.)

Already for “Luis Figueroa“, released on Thursday under Sony Music Latin / Magnus and whose single “Still I Wait” earned him his third Top 10, he felt “como pez en el agua“.

When I opened my mouth to sing the first song it was an amazing feeling that tasted, wow, like I’m back in my salsa. And so it was with all the other songs that we did with this record, with that same feeling, ”he pointed out. “With each demo the weight was loosening from my shoulders, and at times I was in tears because it was such an incredible feeling that I was doing what they really put me here to do, which was to sing salsa”.

Produced by Motiff (Gente de Zona, Marc Anthony), the album includes five songs that explore various facets of love, four of them originals by the singer — “Still I wait for you”, “Party with you”, “Friday” and “9PM” — and a new version of “A lot of stars” by Polo Montañez.

Marc Anthony asked us, and he had been asking us since before I signed with Magnus, to do a version of this song,” said Figueroa, laughing, recounting that after recording “Hasta el sol de hoy” he had sworn that he would not do more versions. of other songs. “For us it was a challenge, a super difficult assignment, because the fact that the father of the chicks comes to ask you to do a song of nothing more and nothing less than Polo Montañez is not, you know, such an easy assignment either.”

A second part of the project, whose songs he described as “even more spectacular than the first“, would come to light around October.


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