When you think of the Urban Latin music movement, there are a number of hot beds in the industry that may come to mind: Puerto Rico, which has fine-tuned the reggaeton genre and exported it to world markets in recent years; New York City, where the gritty urban sounds have given rise to some of the most notable Latino artists in the game, including Big Pun, Beatnuts, and Fat Joe.
Also, Miami, where the deep bass sound of the South has been blended with traditional estilos del caribe to produce artists such as Pitbull; Los Angeles, where some of the pioneers of Latin hip hop blazed the trail in the early 1990s with artists like Kid Frost and Cypress Hill; and Chicago, where the production deep house and freestyle sounds have had a Latin flavor for nearly two decades.
How about Detroit, Michigan? If you think not then it is time to think again.
The night was filled with energy filled performances by a number of different acts including: Bank Street (Hip Hop in English), Tavito y Balin, whose sound can be described as reggaeton with its own unique flavor of traditional sounds including bachata and merengue, Gueroloco, who boasts skills in Spanish (though he is not Latino) with an upbeat flow and taps into numerous sounds, and Final 4our who, as the name indicates, is a four man crew that does it all with an alluring blend of sonidos de la calle and a vibrant stage show including female dancers.
The hype man for the show Raymond “Malcriao” Delgado of www.xclusiva.com brought great energy to the stage to get the crowd involved and never let a dull moment transpire. Rounding out the show were a number of special guests including Ithai and Tuisy among others and, of course, the DJs bringing the sound together including DJ Ivo (Chicago/Indianapolis), DJ Los (Detroit), DJ Fres-ko (Pontiac), and DJ Canny (Toledo).
The artists come from a number of backgrounds; most were natives of cities in Puerto Rico (Mayagüez, Luquillo, and Caguas), who had come to the Detroit, Pontiac areas with their families. Indianapolis native Gueroloco developed his Spanish skills as a member of the U.S. Marines by enrolling in the official language school and has since caught the attention of many in the industry.
All of the artists have MySpace pages, which has become a huge promotional advantage for many independent artists in the music game. This was the initial event of the Latin Industry Connection crew in the Detroit, which has hosted shows in other cities including Chicago.
According to manager Angela Star, a Chicago native, along with event planner and promoter Isai Correa, they hope to continue to host and promote more events in the area. Check out their MySpace pages for yourself and keep your ear a la calle and an eye out for these hungry and humble young artists.