One of the things that stands out the most about Enrique Iglesias’ career is its longevity: the Spanish artist, who started his career in the mid-90s, has been producing hits for over 25 years, sliding through the decades. and following the rhythm. in the industry through different sounds: the rock ballad of “Experiencia Religiosa”, the dance-pop fervor of “Bailamos”, the reggaeton smash “El Perdon” with Nicky Jam. However, he threw his fans on a loop when he announced that his new album – his first in seven years – would be called Final. Immediately, people wondered: would this really be his last?
The short answer is yes. “He is!” Iglesias said on a phone call on his way to a concert rehearsal in Miami. He explains, however, that he is separating Final in two volumes. The first part was released last Friday and features 11 songs that Iglesias has recorded over the past few years, including several topping the 2018 charts, such as “Move to Miami” with Pitbull and “El BaÃ±o”, featuring a Bad Bunny in full swing. He’s working on the second part, but once it’s over he sees Final like his last full project. âIt’s not a decision I thought about a few weeks ago, a few months ago or even a year ago. It was awhile ago, âhe says.
However, that does not mean the end of his musical career. Below, Iglesias reflects on the past and shares how he plans to make music in the future.
How does it feel to make your last album?
I feel good. I feel good. I have been asked several times, “Are you sure this is the right decision?” But that’s how I felt in 2017, that’s what I feel now. I wanted to release this album in 2017, and I keep releasing singles. I was shooting a lot and I didn’t have time to go to the studio, and last year I had a lot of time to go to the studio and just work there on my own and work with Carlos [Paucar] a lot and just going back and forth and finishing what I needed to finish for the past three years.
I think it is the right thing to do. It doesn’t mean that I will stop writing songs, but maybe [Iâll do things] differently. I look at it like, an album is a book and every song is a chapter. But at the same time, you can also say that a song can be part of it too. I hope I can publish more chapters later – and I still have to complete the flight. 2!
As someone who has made music in English and Spanish throughout their career, what do you think about the way music in Spanish has been embraced in recent years?
To be honest, I always thought it was going to happen. In 1999, they called it âthe Latin explosionâ. I was still laughing and thinking, “Dude, here in America, they call it the Latin explosion.” Does that mean it’s going to go away? But I knew it would never go away. It was going to happen in different waves. Back then, there were massive artists crossing the English speaking world, and you still see it today. But now Spanish is more accepted – not that it wasn’t then, but I think the general public is more open to it. You have seen it for the past three years.
I could tell it was in 2014 with “Bailando”. I released two versions, in English and in Spanish, and I remember being in the studio with a producer who didn’t speak a word of Spanish, and I played the whole album to him. And when he heard that song, there wasn’t an English version yet, and he was like, “Oh shit. What is this?” When I made the video, in my head, I was like, âLet’s see what happens. I love both versions, but this is where I could say, âIt’s a movement that goes beyond language. Whether in English or Spanish. There’s something about this beat, there’s something about this song. âThat’s why I used to laugh and say, it’s not a blast. It’s here to stay. It’s not going to go away.
One cool thing for me musically is that I moved here when I was eight. It was mainly because my grandfather had been kidnapped at the time, my parents had divorced – it was quite tumultuous. Moving to the United States, especially Miami, was a drastic change, but musically I remember growing up with music from the Top 40, with Latin music, and then moving back to Europe in the summers, that was. such a mixture. A lot of people wonder why I write in English and not in Spanish, and I’m like, âDude, I grew up in Miami. I have never spoken perfect English and have spoken perfect Spanish before, but I feel comfortable in both and have always written in both.
You’ve always explored reggaeton and urbano, and here you present Myke Towers and Bad Bunny. How were you inspired by what is happening in reggaeton today?
I think urbano music has been in the foreground and that’s what made Latin music, in many ways, so massive. These artists have been so good at it, and they’ve released some amazing music. I have been fortunate enough to work with so many of them, and I personally started doing it with Wisin Y Yandel in 2008. It was a bit of an experience, but that’s when I I realized, “I have to go into the studio with people who come from different musical genres, and I need to get out of my comfort zone and see what’s going on. I remember being in the studio with them, and at one point it really hit me, and I was like, âI understand that.â And that’s when I started doing more collaborations, because that’s the only way I saw my music evolve. And again, being able to do something more pop, something more urban, that’s what kept me spiritually and what kept me alive in terms of enthusiasm for music I like being uncomfortable in the studio Take me somewhere else and let’s try everything.
For several years, we have been discussing the place of Spanish artists in Latin pop. How do you see this conversation?
I know there has been a bit of debate but I think it all comes down to, you can’t fool the fans. They know if there is a collaboration that makes sense or that seems forced. Usually it comes down to the song and the artist. Whether the artist is from more of a pop genre or an urban genreâ¦ I’m sure it goes back to 2008, people were like, âWell, Wisin Y Yandel and Enrique Iglesias, that doesn’t make sense. But the song made sense, and the fans reacted the way I reacted. That said, over the years it’s always a gamble – releasing music is a gamble, period. If people like it, so much the better. And if people don’t like it, move on. You accept it and cry for a few days, and you start over. For me, the collaborations over the years have been essential and they have given me strength.
You’re headlining a tour with Ricky Martin. How does it feel to resume the tour after such a crazy year, and how it feels to be on the front page with Ricky, especially when there is so much history shared in Spanish pop between you of them ?
The tour with Ricky is going to be great and it’s going to be interesting. He comes from a different musical style, and I think the fans are going to appreciate that. We wanted a once in a lifetime moment. And the chemistry is there. I’ve known Ricky for so many years and respect him so much, and we also have Sebastian Yatra, who has that energy and a great attitude and great music. If you want to see a show you want to see different styles of music and this tour is going to be able to satisfy a lot of people musically. We’re clearly not the same and that’s what is going to make it cool. You’re going to bring these two shows together and enjoy Spanish and English music and crossover hits. It’s going to be a bit of everything.