Since their initial gathering as a group, the two time Grammy and ten time Latin Grammy winners, Calle 13 have evolved into one of the most sought out duos in the Latin American scene. Well known for their brew and reform of reggaeton and hip hop along with other chromatic Latino tunes. The duo comprised of step brothers, René – Residente and Eduardo – Visitante who also sometimes include sister Ileana aka PG-13, will be back in Chicago Saturday May 7 at the Congress Theatre. The charismatic and lyrically savvy group has gotten everyones attention, be it good or bad, with a worldwide demographic of listeners. Finding time in their busy lifestlyles to still provide the beats their lyrics yearn.
We had the chance to talk to Calle 13’s Visitante and discussed their preparations for their show this Saturday. The benefits of Internet radio and why you should check out their show on Saturday night.
Gozamos: You have a major in Computer Science, did it inspire you to make and produce music?
Visitante: A lot has helped me to make music. My father helped me a lot as a musician. Computers are in charge, right now. You need them to produce music.
Calle 13 is a supporter of Puerto Rico’s Independent movement. I mean that in reference to your song, ‘Querido F.B.I.,’ Where you all trying to get a response to that or just getting word out on what happened?
V: The theme of ‘Querido F.B.I.’ was made out of something that shouldn’t have happened back then. It was a sad day for Puerto Ricans that believe in Independence, it’s a day we commemorate in sadness. It was a proposition made by the rightist, they censor the airwaves and we thought they’d censor us.
When Calle 13 first began there was a question as to what genre you wanted to belong in, either hip hop or reggaeton, even then your music was still widely accepted. As you began to grow, was that your intention?
V: It’s just music we like to make. At first, they didn’t know if they should consider us reggaeton. But, by our second CD they considered us urban, it’s like a family creating a border it’s what we hear at every country we go to. It’s what we were used to, to find an artists CD. Looking or CD’s through genre and now there hardly aren’t any music stores.
Should music should be one and not multiple genres?
V: Yes. I believe a CD shouldn’t completely be Merengue, it can be more than just merengue, but what you’re trying to say can be social and just having to do with the people want. You can talk about what you’re doing or what’s going on, or what you’re listening to. I don’t know what genre they’re putting our latest CD under. Sure, there’ll be some rapping in some songs but then it can be rock, pop but I really don’t know.
You talked about censorship and how it’s in the radio. What censorship are you talking about?
V: They’re filling the radios with with music that’s hip hop. They’re censoring all of the different music and letting it all sound the same. Keeping other music away, other genres that have pretty much spoken for themselves.
How do you listen to music?
V: We live in the era of technology, where you can use your cell phone for internet and connect it to my car, then listen to music through the internet. I love listening to music in the internet, there’s so much you can listen to. Like when we travel to Europe, I don’t know their radio station, so I use my phone.
What don’t your fans know about Calle 13, or what should they know?
V: That we put on an amazing show. You need to come and see us to believe it. It’s where they get to know us better.
Gozamos sidenote : We couldn’t agree anymore.