Drake has been the talk of the town all day since releasing a brand new track titled “Mia” with Bad Bunny. The up-tempo record features Aubrey singing in Spanish, as Bunny follows up with a long verse of his own. The visual, released simultaneously, sees both stars enjoying an evening block party, equipped with dancing, hookahs, and a game of dominoes.
Bad Bunny feat Drake – “Mia”
But 2018 is far from Drake’s first time teaming up with a Latin-American superstar. Back in 2013, Drizzy teamed up with former Aventura lead singer Romeo Santos for “Odio,” in which the Canadian also showcased his Spanish singing skills. This initial collaboration was especially fitting following the lyrics from Drake’s 2011 smash hit “The Motto,” where he rapped, “Spanish girls love me like I’m Aventura.” What foreshadowing.
Romeo Santos feat Drake – “Odio”
Though Drake is known for his ability to “adapt” into other cultures like they’re his own, he’s not the first–and won’t be the last–to experiment with some bi-lingual singing skills. Let’s take a look at other huge stars who have crossed over into collaborations with Latin sensations.
Before Romeo and Drake came Romeo and Usher. Mr. Raymond doesn’t actually show off any bi-lingual chops on his track “Promise” from Romeo Santos’ 2011 album Fórmula, Vol. 1, but the collaboration was a big deal for both artists, nonetheless.
Romeo Santos feat Usher – “Promise”
We can’t talk about North American pop-stars crossing over without talking about Justin Bieber.
The Canadian heartthrob hopping on the remix to Daddy Yankee & Luis Fonsi’s “Despacito” is probably the most successful Spanish crossover of all-time–and with the original video boasting 5.5 billion views on Youtube, it’s one of the most successful singles ever, in general.
Luis Fonsi & Daddy Yankee feat Justin Bieber – “Despacito (Remix)”
Keeping it in the family, Luis Fonsi’s brother Jean Rodriguez is actually the one who coached Beyoncé on her Spanish chops before she hopped on J Balvin’s “Mi Gente.”
Though the release of this song (and Bey’s involvement in it) had everybody freaking out, this wasn’t Mrs. Carter’s first time around the block. The superstar has made her fair share of Spanish remixes to her very own songs including “Si Yo Fuera Un Chico (If I Were a Boy),” “Oye (Listen),” and “Irreemplazable (Irreplaceable).”
J Balvin & Willy William feat Beyoncé- “Mi Gente”
Though it wasn’t a collaboration with a Latin musician, Kendrick Lamar paid tribute to his Los Angeles roots by rapping his a$$ off en Español for his feature on labelmate Schoolboy Q‘s track “Collard Greens.”
Schoolboy Q feat Kendrick Lamar – “Collard Greens”
Those five aren’t the only North American artists to dabble in some Spanish, check out these honorable mentions to get well-versed in the bi-lingual world of American music.
DJ Snake feat Selena Gomez, Ozuna, Cardi B – “Taki Taki”