In composing the themes of the animated film “Encanto,” Lin-Manuel Miranda reflected the international vision that Latin music has achieved in the past decade.
From his New York office, the Pulitzer Prize winner, Tony, Grammy, and Emmy winner shared his view on including artists like Maluma, Carlos Vives and Sebastian Yatra on the film’s soundtrack, which is already in theaters.
“Before you had to sing in English in order for your voice to be heard all over the world. This is no longer the case,” said the Oscar nominee for “How Far I Go” by Moana.
“When I wrote the song ‘Colombia, Mi Encanto’, I was writing Carlos Vives songs from Vallenato, and I needed him (to record it). In the end, when he did it with his musicians, the song reached an unimaginable level of originality.”
Lin-Manuel Miranda, composer
Knowing the Latin roots of his family, who hail from Puerto Rico, Lin Manuel recruited Vives to translate the song “Colombia, Mi Encanto” and the Yatra for the song “Dos Oruguitas”.
“I’d love that J Balvin, Bad Bunny, and Mike Towers don’t have to learn English to do ‘intersection’. Its influence is really spread all over the world and you don’t have to speak English to get here. I think the US finally got it.
“When I was younger, one of the great moments in music was when Shakira started singing in English and there was a ‘boom’ in her work, or when Marc Anthony started performing salsa in English,” he added. “That was cool, but we all grew up, evolved and learned from it and we’re really clear: Latin music is dominant.”
Just this year, Miranda made his film directorial debut with “Tick, Tick…Boom!” The movie is now available on Netflix. In addition to this, he served as the executive producer of the documentary film “Rita Moreno: Just a Girl I Decided to Go” and the animated film Vivo.
The New Yorker, creator of the Broadway musical “Hamilton,” considered that one of the greatest strengths of Incanto songs was the diversity of their musical styles.
“I knew I could write reggaeton, hip-hop and rap and it wouldn’t adapt to a genre because the story is told in Colombia,” he said. “There are moments of folklore and Vallenato and there’s pop music and there’s a little bit of everything because the world is ready for this mix and that mix of music in the same movie.”
“Incanto,” about a family living in a rural Colombian community, meant to the interviewee an opportunity to explore the culture of that South American country.
“My dad has a perspective that I don’t. I grew up in a New York neighborhood and he grew up in a small town neighborhood in Puerto Rico. His view of family, which is the subject of the film, was very different from what I do, what I do.”
“Tell us about the great-grandmother, who was in control of ‘finances.’ If you marry that grandmother’s son, you marry not one person, but everyone, their thoughts and habits. This is how the money was distributed. It was a model of a maternal house, like The house you see in the movie, and it totally inspired me and gave me life lessons. It’s what you hear in the songs.”
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