The blessing and curse of the ’90s Latin Pop Explosion : Code Switch : NPR

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In the third part of our series exploring crossover in pop music, we reexamine the so-called “Latin explosion” of the ’90s: what it was supposed to be for audiences across the U.S., and what it actually came to represent.

Blake Cale for NPR


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Blake Cale for NPR


In the third part of our series exploring crossover in pop music, we reexamine the so-called “Latin explosion” of the ’90s: what it was supposed to be for audiences across the U.S., and what it actually came to represent.

Blake Cale for NPR

Last week, Shereen Marisol Meraji and the good folks at AltLatino teamed up on the Code Switch pod to ask: What exactly is ‘Latin music’ anyway? (If you haven’t heard that episode yet — go listen. Like, now.)

Well, today we’re bringing you a bonus episode from our friends at NPR’s It’s Been a Minute podcast. In it, they reexamine the so-called “Latin explosion” of the late ’90s: What it was supposed to be for audiences across the U.S., and what it actually came to represent. Sony music executive Tommy Mottola is often credited with driving this “crossover success” — launching the careers of Ricky Martin, Shakira, Marc Anthony and Jennifer Lopez. What were the business considerations that built these careers, and how did the streaming revolution upend the multi-genre landscape of Latin music? They reconsider this music moment with Cobo, “Livin La Vida” songwriter Draco Rosa and journalist Jennifer Mota.

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