La López and Iglesias: Beauty and the Grunge?

Enrique and JLo
Enrique Iglesias and JLo Concert Poster

OK, so I recently went to see Ms. JLo and Enrique Iglesias (uh, yeah, awkward combo) at the Staples Center in LA Live in Downtown LA.  I know money moves the world and concerts are no exception to this very well-known fact, but to pair the Diva of Glam with the pseudo grungy crooner of Enrique Iglesias was confusing at best and disturbing at worst.  If pop stars are king, then concert promoters are god, and this concert evidenced this sentiment.

Mind you, I admire both pop stars tremendously and have been following their careers since they both hatched in the constellation of celebridom (yeah, I just made that one up!).

While I truly admire Enrique Iglesias and his commercial pop style, I feel that he keeps on serving the same old tired shtick.  Come on, dress up a little, look like a pop star not like a typical urban college student… you’re passed that age Enrique.  I mean, Beto Cuevas, former La Ley frontman, looks like a rock star, exuding sensuality and passion with every lick of his lips, every pelvic movement and every note that comes out of his gifted voice.  I’m not proposing Enrique becomes someone he’s not, but he has to step it up a tad and really exude the fact that he is a global Latin pop star, so I say, act and look like one.

Enrique’s show has not changed much since I saw him 10 years ago, when he was dabbling into the world of English pop with Bailamos.  Yes, to his credit, he’s extremely connected to his audience, but the same routine gets a bit old and quite predictable.  You know what I’m talking about, the invitation of the gay guy on stage, who he flirts with and romances with a song, making it very clear that he’s as straight as an arrow and of course, the obligatory overweight female fan who forever makes out with him on stage and disappears with him under stage after he makes her feel like she’s the only girl in the world!

It’s all good and fun, but after seeing Enrique three times, you wonder if he’s just a one-trick pony.  I sure hope not, because he’s talented to boot and has music that still resonates with a growing, multigenerational, cross-cultural and cross gender fan base.

On the other hand, La López delivers what fans expect of her, glamour, fierceness, fashion, divaesque choreographies and entertainment galore. To expect JLo to belt out a soprano note and not crack is like expecting the Second Coming of Christ announced a day before on the cover of the New York Times, so haters, leave Ms. JLo alone!  Jeez Louise.  She’s a global brand, and entertainer who ran with her assets and learned to exploit them; there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that.  If you want Liza with a Z or Barbra Streisand, then go buy tickets for their shows.  JLo is now, and she’s also 2020, not 1970, so don’t get it twisted.

JLo and Enrique Iglesias Concert Poster

To say that I enjoyed JLo’s performance would be a gross understatement.  The woman delivered in every aspect.  Her performance was a little Broadway with a splash of Vegas extravaganza eleganza!  The highlights of the night were her ability to captivate the audience with her sensual moves, including the 29 second ode to her posterior wiggle.  But aside from the upbeat rhythms of her repertoire, she was able to take it back to her beloved Bronx in a hip hop medley that is reminiscent of her notorious Puff Daddy past.  But a great slow interlude was her slow jam of  Until It Beats No More, which she basically dedicates to her children in a video montage that is quite sincere and emotional.

But for her dance fans, JLo did not disappoint and she brought her music videos to life in tracks like Papi, Waiting for Tonight, On The Floor, Dance Again and the grand finale track Follow The Leader with her fellow Boricuas Wisin and Yandel, which pretty much brought the house down and was the perfect close to a night of glitter, sensual hip/booty gyrations and a global icon who just happens to be one of ours…Latina de corazon.
So for all that it’s worth, let’s be proud of our Latino global stars and support them so that they may continue shining in that Hollywood constellation for many, many years to come.  Viva Puerto Rico!

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