Protected: Discourse

Williams College 2021

Questions for Katelina “Gata” Eccleston—Please use the #trendingblkwilliams and #g2 in for the Twitter-chat

Race and gender in Reggaeton: 

  • I saw an interview where you spoke of JLo’s use of the term negrita, and I would like to know your opinion on the terms used by male reggaeton artists to refer to a woman?
  • Building on the last question, what are your thoughts on the term morena in music? 
  • Do you think that musical artists who use the term “la raza latina” or talk about Latinidad believe that Latinx is a unifying race or identity marker? 
  • Are there any examples of reggaeton artists acknowledging racial identities or do they mainly stick to the blanket Latinx identity? 
  • Do you think Reggaeton’s rising popularity in the US, where there is more online activism around race, will cause artists to acknowledge or confront issues around race more than they have before? 
  • In your podcast episode “Where Da Ladies At?”, you speak on the scant number of Reggaetoneras, attributing this to the pressure placed on women to “put out” for men with power in the industry. Alongside this, how do you think racism and colorism also contribute to the suppression of women in Reggaeton, especially considering the few prominent Latina women in the genre are those with a lighter complexion, such as KAROL G and Natti Natasha? 
  • Similarly, in regards to the space that Afro-Latina women occupy in Reggaeton, marginalized for both their race and gender, should it be an obligation for the more visible and prominent non-black and male artists to promote these women and their art? 

Knowledge and activism in the digital space: 

  • Following George Floyd’s murder by police in Minneapolis, you reflected on the silence of urbano artists in addressing the prevalence of anti-Blackness. What role should non-Black musicians capitalizing on Black music and aesthetics assume in these violent instances, especially when lacking the necessary language to dismantle these oppressive systems? 
  • Similarly, how do you view your presence in these online communities? As an activist and sharer of knowledge, where do you situate yourself within these digital conversations surrounding race and gender in Popular Culture? 
  • As a potential site of performative solidarity, social media is often labeled as an ineffective way of generating support among non-Black individuals for issues deeply impacting Black people. What type of social impact do digital platforms possess beyond affording visibility to Black folks? 
  • How do your experiences as a historian shape the manner in which you engage with online discourses centering Afro-Latinxs on social media, specifically Twitter? 
  • In what ways do you believe that Twitter and other social media platforms might be utilized in the future to garner support and raise awareness about issues concerning race and gender? What do you imagine the future of digital spaces and the continuing influence of BPC to look like? 
  • Speaking more specifically on activism through social media, you wrote in an Op-Ed that you were not a proponent of “cancel culture”. Admittedly, cancellation as a tool for accountability has its limitations and downfalls. As such, what are some of the methods you use to hold people accountable, especially Reggaeton artists who are active on social media? 

The rise of Reggaeton 

  • Reggaeton is truly on the rise, now one of the most popular and lucrative genres in Latin music. However, as you’ve said before, it is still definitely not as big as it can get, one main reason being that Latinx people often look down at Reggaeton through an elitist lens. Considering this, in what ways can the latin community be convinced of Reggaeton’s respectability as a genre, and how can this be achieved through the use of social media? 
  • In that same regard, is cross-cultural collaboration, such as what Cardi B did in her track with Bad Bunny & J Balvin also necessary for the “rise” of Reggaeton? If so, then what’s stopping collaborations between Reggaeton and Hip-Hop artists? Is it simply the language barrier or are there other factors at play? 

Harvard 2021

Nicolas Obando

What are the different kinds of reggaeton? Maleanteo? Perreo? I am still confused about spotting these. 

Hi Nicolas so I consider Reggaeton to be Panamanian and Regueton to be Puerto Rican and with that said. The different kinds of Regueton are Maleanteo, Sandunguero, Bellakeo. The differences between the three are the essences–Maleanteo is centered in a reflection of the street lifestyle that was a very big reality for the artists who chose to create it whereas Sandunguero is a celebration of Afro Boricua perreo that incorporates ‘Bomba’ drum patterns, and Bellakeo that celebrates sex. These essences aren’t mutually exclusive but largely are celebrated under these umbrellas.

What do you think will be the next step in regueton?

I think Regueton is looking for its next big trend, right now that trend is Popeton, commercially its doing great but culturally I think artists recognize its time for a change.

What would be an evolution? 

I think there are many avenues Regueton hasn’t explored and an evolution would be a continuation of the path that Villano Antillano, Bad Bunny and others has set forth for example, playing with social paradigms like gender because the genre at large is very machista, very heterosexual,

What are your thoughts on other countries adding to reggaeton singers list e.g. Argentina with Bizarrap is incorporating cumbia styles into reggaeton beats?

I love it, I am dying to hear more incorporations of other countries I think it can greatly influence the richness of the sound, and be fun to hear. Its the legacy of house Regueton continues to reinvent itself.

What country are you eager to see incorporating its folk music into reggaeton? 

Countries whose respective music styles haven’t been incorporated into the music, like Haiti, Honduras, Paraguay even Peru, why not? I’d love to hear it.

I want to do a masterclass of reggaeton too, I love the topic and I am always talking about it with my fellows. How to start recopillating info? Where to check ? 

Visit www.blackmusiclibrary.com

Dulce Ramos

What ever happened to El General? Why he vanished? / what do you respond when they tell you perreo is misogynistic? 

Hi Dulce, El General felt very lonely during his last years in music and found solace in religion. He became a Jehovah’s Witness and left music altogether.

Alexandra Carlino

What does she think of the LOUD podcast? And it’s accuracy.

I produced LOUD, I’d say it is very accurate lol.

Jaimie G

What country is responsible for the origin of reggaeton? 

Reggaeton = Panama

Regueton = Puerto Rico

Beatrix Nunez

What is one significant change that you would like to see today within the reggaeton community? 

Diversity. Black women aren’t celebrated anywhere, at every level of the industry Black women are not respected. I am a unicorn and I don’t want to be. In the American Market there is Nicki Minaj (a caribeña), Cardi B (a caribeña), Rihanna (a caribeña), Trina (a caribeña), City Girls, Meg Thee Stallion, Beyonce, the list of Black women is endless and in Latin market? Less than 10% of Female acts in urbano are Black women that is despicable.

Krystal Perez

What inspired you to dive into the history of reggaeton?

Reggaeton kept me alive. I was going through the most difficult time in my life and Reggaeton gave me joy, so through finding my voice in my career I naturally had the urge to intertwine Reggaeton into it and created Reggaeton Con La Gata.

Stephanie Marmolejo

Of All Latino Music, what made you choose reggaetĂłn ?

Reggaeton is my heritage, I am a proud West-Indian Panamanian of Jamaican Descent. Its history easily mirrors that of my family, I see it as my legacy.

Lizbeth Castillo

How should we feel about reggaetoneros today such as bad bunny who produce great music and have a wide audience but yet fail to speak about black issues despite reggaetĂłn being rooted in back culture? It’s like these artists make me proud of being Latinx but at the same time they don’t speak about important matters hence making me feel guilty about supporting them in general. 

I think you’re right on the money. I think we should be critical of artists, I don’t think anybody should be free of scrutiny especially if they are a public figure because there is a social responsibility that they need to take seriously. They have influence over millions of people, they should actively educate themselves on the themes present in their music. We, as a culture, as a people, should hold each other accountable so I feel like these artists, their teams, these labels, this industry simply aren’t doing enough.

Ariana Suaste

What do you think reggaetĂłn in the future is going to sound like?

Hi Ariana, I think the possibilities are endless, I really don’t have a specific prediction I really don’t know I wish I had a suggestion.

América Barraza De La Torre

Would love to learn more about community work/ healing related to reggaetón. And if you’re accepting resumes for an assistant?!

“Healing related to reggaeton” I love that. I can’t say that I know of a collective dedicated to matching Reggaeton with actual therapy/practices–the idea of it is cool but I can imagine also very complicated because the music isn’t perfect, no genre is, but there are some very thick themes that deserve to be dissected.. this is interesting.

Sarah

What is her WHY behind this work? 

Hi Sarah, there are many “WHYs” great question, As cliche as it sounds, I want to be the change I want to see in the world–Latin Music desperately needs a racial reckoning and I want to contribute to that as much as my bandwidth will allow.

I love this music, it is my favorite, I honestly want to see it succeed.

I recognize the collective and individual desires to expand on difficult conversation and that people trust me so I want to (ethically) exploit that as much as I can. These conversations break barriers, increase understanding increase humanity I love being a witness to that change.

Dahlia

How do you think female producers in the field of reggaeton can get more recognition in such a male dominated space? 

By being loud(not obnoxious but like claiming space) about the dope work that they’re doing. In this space you have to own it and be innovative about the ways by which you show off your work. I’m excited for female producers, I’ve learned to produce Reggaeton and I

Paula Pelayo

Do you think pop reggaeton limits the artists creativity because the music has to be catchy and what people expect?

Hi Paula, I think popeton has very specific limits yes, and definitely follows what many in the industry call “the formula”, answer to your question is YES, definitely.

Who made reggaeton mainstream?  

Reggaeton = El General

Regueton = Tego Calderon.

Christian Delayo

What is Perreo?

Perreo translates to twerk. It’s a dance movement that culturally compliments Perreo music which was created to celebrate sex. DJ Blass “I created music with the goal of transporting people from the dance floor the bedroom.” Through my analysis I’ve established that producers went as far as creating beats that compliment the BPM of sexual intercourse.

Jasmine Walters

What does she see for the future of Reggaeton?

More money, although I think culturally we have hit a ceiling.

Jessica Palmeros

How does Bad Bunny relate? Who are the founding women of perreo music? 

Bad Bunny is a long time coming, I wish he wasn’t such an anomaly. The idea of a cis-het man experimenting with traditionally queer themes shouldn’t be a spectacle when actual queer people exist but alas it speaks volumes as to where we are and where we’ve been as a “culture” in the Latin music space.

Liz Faire

What has kept you focused ?

Jorge Sanchez Cruz

Could you talk about the ways in which reggaeton can be seen–or not– as queer/feminist intervention, even perhaps a de decolonial critique? Thank you 

Irma Aurora Perez

Earliest memory you have tied to reggaeton?

Shania Hurtado

ln a predominantly male dominated music genre, how important is it to amplify women within the reggaeton world? 

Mariela Cruz

How did you learn about history? Who is the first OG from PR? How did Pina & Gárgolas get their start? 

Justine Richards

Where does your love for Reggaeton derive from?

Lorena

At what point if any did women take power in Perreo? Was it when female performers entered?

Anna Guadarrama

What has been one of the most influential periods in the evolution of reggaetĂłn? 

Brizai

How do you see the evolution of Latine/x music being mainstreamed into the English music business. Will reggaeton and such change to please non latine/x audiences?