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Daddy Yankee
Who would have thought that a Spanish language party track from a Puerto Rican reggaetón artist would be the one to knock hip-hop heavyweights and classic rock stalwarts off the Indian charts? We at The Record did, actually!

Our February 2006 issue featured Daddy Yankee ~ the man in question ~ as an artist to look out for, and since then he has stormed radio and TV airplay and rung up sales numbers that record companies always dream of. Gasolina is undoubtedly the song on everyone’s lips here, no matter that they can’t speak the language.

Reaching out to people regardless of ethnicity has been Daddy Yankee’s plan ever since he began making music fifteen years ago. He says, “When I was 14 years old I started out making reggaetón. It is a hybrid of hip-hop, dancehall and salsa ~ we combine it all together and that’s reggaetón! It is very popular on the street because everyone can identify with the music. It doesn’t matter what colour you are, it doesn’t matter how old you are, when you hear the music you’re going to dance to it!” As a frontrunner in the genre he should know!

Born Raymond Ayala in 1977 in San Juan, Puerto Rico, the singer started out training for a professional baseball career. A serious injury left him unable to play professionally and it was then that he turned his complete attention to music. He worked on his craft under the guidance of well-known Puerto Rican DJ Playero, one of the pioneers of reggaetón. It quickly became clear that the young musician had what it took to make it big. Ayala earned the title of ‘King of Improvization’ by winning the Street Jam Reggae Award for five years in a row. He became known on the reggaetón scene by his stage name Daddy Yankee.

His first two albums El Cartel and El Cartel II both reached Platinum record status. Not only was Yankee fast becoming a master of the clever lyric and addictive beat, he also took up social issues as most rappers and reggaetón artists do, making him an icon of the youth in his native land. As founder and lead producer of Los Cangri’s Inc. and El Cartel Records, Yankee collaborated with big name artists such as NAS and multiple Grammy award winner Olga Tańón.

By 2002, Yankee had recorded over 130 tracks in as many as 70 reggaetón albums. 2003 was a landmark year in Daddy Yankee’s career. His album Los Home-Runes achieved record-breaking sales, and he was able to fulfill his life-long dream when he performed before a full house at Puerto Rico’s prestigious Roberto Clemente Coliseum. This was also the year that he was honoured with the title ‘El Padrino de la Juventud’ (The Godfather Of The Youth) at the annual Puerto Rican day parade.


You can read the rest of our feature on Daddy Yankee in the March 2006 issue of The Record Music Magazine available at your local newsagent.

































ALSO IN THIS ISSUE:

Green Day
David Gilmour
Jack Johnson
Massive Attack
Ranjit Barot
Corinne Bailey Rae
Pankaj Awasthi
Mentor Kolektiv
Karmacy
DJ Agni
Getting Started:Electronic Bass Guitar
Record University
Roy Orbison
Lola Kutty: Agony Aunty
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