Growing up in Puerto Rico, how has the lifestyle inspired your musical taste?
Luis Fonsi: Some of my favorite memories are from that time where I lived in Puerto Rico with my family. I had a wonderful childhood, and then when I was ten years old, we moved to Orlando. It was a challenge at first, but soon after, I learned to appreciate having to experience both cultures which ultimately made me the person I am today. I knew from an early age that I loved music, I first experienced it at six years old when I became part of the children’s chorus in San Juan, Puerto Rico. I am a shy person, believe it or not, and music was the only way I felt truly comfortable.
What was the first album you ever owned?
LF: My first album (cassette) was Michael Jackson’s Thriller. I begged my parents to get it for me for weeks. To this day it’s still my favorite album, and probably the best album ever recorded.
What was it like to collaborate with Justin Bieber on “Despacito”? If you could collaborate with another artist who would it be?
LF: I have said it a lot this year, but it truly was a great experience. He is very talented, and the story behind it was he was on tour in Bogotá, Colombia, and he went out to a club, and he heard the song and saw how people went crazy over it and started singing it. So he contacted us through his management. He wanted to jump on the song, so he did an English version at the beginning, and he sang the hook with me in Spanish, which is a cool thing for him to take the time to do this. The lyrics, which are not easy in this song—it’s a very lyric-heavy chorus—and the fact that he did in Spanish, was a great thing and opened the door for other artists to do the same.
I’ve been able to collaborate with some amazing artists including DNCE with Nicky Minaj, Charly Black, and more recently with Demi Lovato on my second single “Échame La Culpa,” which was another incredible experience. I loved working with Demi, and the song has already made a huge impact globally, so I’m extremely happy and grateful for all the opportunities that have come my way, and I hope to continue being able to share my music with the world for years to come.