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BAD GYAL Anthems: "Chulo" and "Give Me"

I'm not claiming that listening to Daddy Yankee, Bad Bunny, or Mora makes me feel understood, but what use is there in sulking over a Bob Dylan chorus?

In the fifth grade in Spain, my classmates started listening to reggaeton. I vividly remember hearing “Reggaetón Lento” by CNCO and “Picky” by Joey Montana in the background as girls recorded musical.lys before class. I firmly stood by my music, listening to Ella Fitzgerald and Billy Joel, truly believing I was not like other girls. This naive, individualistic attitude stayed with me through the rest of middle school and I proudly refrained from listening to popular Spanish music, claiming it lacked musical skill or lyrical depth. 

Today, I confidently listen to the all-powerful Bad Gyal, a reggaeton artist from Barcelona who just released her first solo album. She is my phone’s screen saver and my personal role model. Now I understand my immature attempt at maturity blinded me from realizing that reggaeton can be just as powerful as a lyrically profound folk rock song. Bad Gyal’s music is true dramatism, empowerment, sexuality, and bling. Her unapologetically vain lyrics, raspy auto-tuned voice, and dembow base make for the perfect going-out music. Start with “Chulo” or “Give Me,” and don't forget some classics like “Sin Carnet,” “Santa Maria,” and “Flow 2000."

Image Credit: Clash Magazine

When I listen to Bad Gyal I embody the person I want to be. I choose to acknowledge my feelings and enjoy a reality in which they will always exist, without letting myself sink into them. I can embrace mistakes and accept absurdity. I’m transported back home, where I dance and yell the wildly inappropriate lyrics with my girlfriends and adore every minute of it.  As long as a debatably overly autotuned voice doesn't bother you, you’ll love Bad Gyal and embrace where you are in life, regardless of the bad that might come with it. Trust me.

Sally Mulvihill is a first-year in the College studying History of Art.


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