Bad Bunny is Creating a New Wave of Latin Music Artist

Scarlet Ruiz

Gladys Vega/Getty Images

From bagging groceries at supermarkets to performing at the Super Bowl, Bad Bunny has become one of the biggest Latin singers, and his activism is changing the Latin music culture.

Most recently, the Puerto Rican singer has released a new but controversial album. The album ‘YHLQMDLG’ , an acronym for ‘Yo Hago Lo Que Me Da La Gana’ meaning ‘I Do What I Want’,includes the song ‘Yo Perreo Sola’, which is causing the most talk within the reggaeton community.

The message of the song describes how women want to be able to go out, dance ‘perreo’, and not constantly have men try to harass them. In the song he challenges the machismo and sexist norms embedded in reggaeton music for decades.

The music video shows Bad Bunny dressing up as women in multiple scenes. The music video has subliminal activist messages and outright bold statements, that many were shocked to see a Latino do so proudly.

Understanding the significance of the music video means knowing the recent events that have happened in Puerto Rico.

Recently a transgender woman was murdered in Puerto Rico named Alexa. When news outlets and government officials reported her violent death they referred to her as a ‘man with a skirt’. Bad Bunny used his platform in the music video, and on a live performance on ‘The Tonight Show With Jimmy Fallon’ to address her death. He wore a skirt with a shirt saying ‘Mataron a Alexa. No un hombre con falda.’ meaning ‘They killed Alexa. Not a man with a skirt’.

This itself was a strong stance for a Latin artist to take, as transphobia is prominent in the Latinx community. 

Bad Bunny protests against machismo and sexist views of the Latinx community by supporting the #NiUnaMenos movement. This movement began in Argentina protesting the constant ‘femicide’ of cisgender and transgender women. His support can be seen in the background of the ‘Yo Perreo Sola’ music video.

Singers participating in movements and activism isn’t new, however, what is new is that he is a Latinx artist. There’s been underlying homophobia, transphobia, racism, fatphobia, and colorism in the Latino community forever. For one of the biggest Latinx artists to speak out on these issues is groundbreaking.

Bad Bunny is setting a good example for the Latinx community, so the question comes down to, What should other Latinx artists do?

First, the stigmatism, subliminal messages, and cultural norms need to be reworked. 

Second, machismo culture needs to stop being accepted. More women are taking charge and not letting patriarchal normalcies weighing them down. However, we need Latinx artists to create music that uplifts and supports women, not music that objectifies them.

Most importantly it’s imperative that we see a progressive and accepting shift in the Latinx community.