By Nancy Sanchez-Diaz
From the fun and flirty beats of pop and reggaeton to the raw emotion of Mexican ranchera, Christina Aguilera’s “La Fuerza” EP successfully embraces the magic that is Latin culture.
“La Fuerza,” which translates to ‘The Strength,’ was released on Friday, Jan. 21.
It is composed of six songs, two of them featuring collaborations.
In her first single, “Pa’ Mis Muchachas,” the Ecuadorian singer is joined by Mexican-American pop star Becky G and Argentine artists Nathy Peluso and Nicki Nicole.
With a Cuban guaracha song including trap undertones and the powerhouse vocals that she’s known for, Aguilera leads the flirty Latina empowerment anthem with a fierce grace.
The piano-led ballad “Somos Nada,” on the other hand, tackles inner strength, self-empowerment and taking chances, no matter how dark or scary the situation may be.
Aguilera belts in Spanish, “Although you see me made of metal / I fly with wings of crystal / In front of the cliff, standing and trembling / I’m going to jump.”
Perhaps the most impactful song off the album is the fittingly titled “La Reina.”
In this full-fledged ranchera ballad, Aguilera pays homage to the king of ranchera music, Vicente Fernandez’s “El Rey.”
Her powerful vocals, coupled with the raw emotion that precedes ranchera music, makes for an exquisite response to Fernandez’s boastful claims of being king: “Although you are still king, you’re nothing without the queen.”
Aguilera also stays true to her essence in songs like “Como Yo” and “Ya Llegue,” emphasizing her strength and independence. However, she is not afraid to take risks with others like “Santo,” where she experiments with a sultry and futuristic-turned-reggaeton track.
According to The Rolling Stone, Aguilera made her debut in the Latin music market in 2000, with “Mi Reflejo,” which included Spanish translations of her English-language hits alongside a few covers and original songs.
Since then, Aguilera has intermittently dropped songs in Spanish, including the Bionic standout “Desnudate, and “Hoy Tengo Ganas de Ti” with Mexican crooner Alejandro Fernández.
“La Fuerza” is the first installment of three Spanish EPs that Aguilera will release throughout the year.
A veteran in the Anglo music industry, known for hit songs like “Genie in a Bottle” and “Beautiful,” Aguilera has nothing to prove.
Yet, “La Fuerza” is a project that manages to encapsulate a diverse mix of Latin sounds and deliver high on the passion, strength and vulnerability that Latin music is known for.
Art by Nancy Sanchez-Diaz