Calle 13 Sweeps Latin Grammys, As Well They Should
by Jim Washburn
Congratulations to our good friends Calle 13, the Puerto Rican firebrands, who just won a record nine Latin Grammys at the awards show in Las Vegas Thursday night, including Album of the Year.
I say "good friends" not so much in the "exchanged bodily fluids" sense, but in the sense that the Four Story staff shared adjacent floors at Havana's Hotel National last year, and they were a nice bunch of folks, as far as we could tell on the elevator.
The band had been in town to play a massive free concert, held on Anti-Imperialism Plaza, with the audience swelling into the streets of the surrounding neighborhood, everyone having such a fabulous dancing, singing, drinking, partying tropical time that you'd think you were in Scranton, not a communist slave state.
The Latin Grammys are nearly always as out-of-touch as the non-Latin Grammys, so it was great to see a sweep by a band that means business, both musically and with lyrics that advocate for Puerto Rican independence and liberation groups throughout Latin America. It was sort of like having Rage Against the Machine sweep the Grammys.