INDIO, California – J Balvin gave music fans a full sampling of reggaeton during his appearance this weekend at the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival in Indio, California, showing that the world-conquering Latin genre has a place in the playlists of the hipsters who attend the coolest festival on the planet.
“We took 15 years to bring reggaeton to Coachella,” the 33-year-old Colombian singer said during Saturday’s concert, taking a pause during his intense performance on the festival’s main stage in the California desert.
Balvin was joined by two special guests, Spanish singer Rosalia and Jamaica’s Sean Paul, for his performance.
“It’s a great opportunity to be here today representing Latinos with reggaeton,” the singer said, thanking the Hispanic community for its support and reflecting on a musical genre that has taken off around the world.
Reggaeton no longer needs an introduction, having made onto the playlists at clubs in numerous countries and broken records for views on YouTube.
Big stars like Beyoncé, with “Mi gente,” and Justin Bieber, with “Despacito,” have scored huge hits in the Latin genre.
Balvin, however, made reggaeton history on Saturday at Coachella, a barometer for what is cool and what is not in music.
“And if the people ask for reggaeton ... I’m not going to deny them,” Balvin told music fans who turned out for his concert on Saturday.
Fans got a big treat when Rosalia, who had performed on Friday, took the stage to sing “Con altura” with Balvin.
With an elaborately decorated stage as a backdrop, Balvin performed such hits as “Si necesitas reggaeton dale” and “Safari” before pausing to reflect on the musical journey that made him a star.
The Colombian singer then covered Daddy Yankee’s reggaeton classic “Gasolina” and N.O.R.E.’s “Oye mi canto.”
Balvin was at the top of his game with a performance of “No es justo.”
On the opening day of the festival, Rosalia, Mon Laferte and Los Tucanes de Tijuana performed on what is going to be the most Latin Coachella festival ever.
Even the surprise acts had a Hispanic flavor on Friday, with Cardi B, Ozuna and Selena Gomez taking the stage at the concert by DJ Snake to sing “Taki Taki.”