Nathy Peluso is a genre in herself, but if it needed to be defined, it would be a fusion of hip-hop, salsa, rap, trap, tango, jazz, blues, R&B and… really, whatever comes her way. And just as she mixes musical genres, she mixes languages. Does she sing in Spanish? Not really. Her lyrics are a strange mix of Argentinian slang, English, Catalan, Italian and plainly made-up words.
She is tall for a Latina: 5.5 feet high (1.7 meters). But her height is in no way what makes her presence unavoidable when she walks on stage, enters a room or appears on your Instagram feed: she seems hyperactive, always dancing, jumping around, twerking, making funny faces, and she’s always eating (she actually wrote a love song to a pizza) ????. It’s also the way she dances, the clothes she wears and, when she starts singing, her incredible voice.
And once you manage to understand her weird, made-up language, what are Nathy Peluso’s songs about? Well yes, pizza, for starters. We already mentioned that. But she’s also part of that female hip-hop wave that empowers women through her music: “Business Woman” is probably the most obvious example:
Me llaman porque soy una business woman
Tengo negocios que dirigir yo sola
Hago guita desde que nací bien piola
The TikTok challenge
“This made me feel like an empowered woman and I’m a man,” says one of the top comments on the YouTube video of Nathy Peluso’s contribution with Argentinian producer Bizarrap, which after only two weeks of its release had already 30 million views. Sexual empowerment is definitely another major topic in her music.
As soon as the “Music Sessions #36” collaboration with Nathy Peluso and Bizarrap came out, the TikTok generation started dancing to the chorus:
I’m a, I’m am a, I’m a nasty girl, fantastic
Este culo es natural, no plastic
Lo que toco lo hago bombastic
Todo’ eso’ gile’ a mí me la mastic-
Soon, the challenge had even more videos than the views on the original videos. More than 45 million TikTok videos were danced to this music, weather emulating the same choreography or giving it original twists.
The singer even made her own versions, one of them next to singer and actress Lali Espósito, and actress Úrsula Corberó, who played Tokio in La casa de papel.
Nathy Peluso: Calambre
Releasing a music video that generated a viral Internet challenge wasn’t even Peluso’s biggest accomplishment this year. While we were all trying to make the best of this pandemic by taking some online course or failing to stay fit, she was releasing her first album, Calambre and she was being nominated for two Latin Grammy’s: to Best New Artist and Best Alternative Song, for “Buenos Aires”, which she performed in the award’s gala, with Argentina’s rock legend Fito Páez.
If that wasn’t enough, she performed her album’s main single “Sana sana” in Colors, where artists such as Billie Eilish have performed before.
And if all these hits, her singing and dancing skills, and unique style are sill not enough reason to watch out for Nathy Peluso, keep in mind her age: she’s only 25, going on 26 on Jan 12 2021, her birthday.
The ‘latinidad’ of Nathy Peluso
Being Latina is not the same experience when you’re living in Latin American than when you’re living in another country. While in Latin America you’re barely aware of your ‘latinidad’, it becomes key to your identity when you’re located abroad. And this is probably why many of the songs by Argentina’s raising singer Nathy Peluso are about being a Latina: she has been living in Spain since she was a kid and, from there, she has mixed and matched all possible Latinx rhythms and styles.
Many of her songs reflect that feeling US-based Latinxs know so well: the construction of an identity based on being from somewhere else, the continuous dodging or appropriation of stereotypes, the overcoming of obstacles such as racial discrimination, language guilt or accent barriers. Her most iconic song on this respect is La sandunguera:
Nathy Peluso: “La Sandunguera” + lyrics
Este es mi jazz latino
Este es mi jazz latino
Soy nena muy rica latinoamericana
De chiquita tenía bombachita de bandana
Lo que menos me importa es tu banana
Acércate que te enseño katana
Si me llamas al cell y te voy a rescatar
Te saco todo el juguito de mi ananas
Cocino boloñesa no me meto en macana
No quiero que a mi amiguito se lo lleven en cana
No quiero explicarte, no me da la ga-
No sé si yo estoy haciendo musica urba-
Lo único que sé es que me escucha tu pana
Abre tu ser, veo tu mente llana
Yo entiendo que diga que mi culo está muy bueno
Vení vos probame que te enseño mi veneno
La sandunguera yo soy la verdadera
Salsa y sabor oye más tu quisieras
Este es mi jazz latino…
La bohemia de la nena te trajo miel
Sabiduría y placer
No había nadita que hacer
Solo aprendí a crecer
Estoy en la montaña besando a la vida
Por todo lo que tengo, estoy agradecida
Mamita no quiero que estés herida
Que la familia nunca se divida
No me de la mano, no quiero tocarte
Tu plata postura está muy lejos de mi arte
A mí nunca con nada me podrás comprar
Acá te espero solo si querés ayudar
Al escribir yo siento la paz
Me importa un pepino que concha dirás
Yo hago música para el mundo
Mi mensaje es tan profundo
For all motherfuckers
Este es mi jazz latino…
Nathy Peluso: Bio
Her full name is Nathalia Beatriz Dora Peluso, but her stage name is Nathy Peluso. Born in January 1995 in Argentina, she spent her first years in Buenos Aires, before moving with her family to Spain at the age of 9.
As she has explained in an interview for La Resistencia, she did rhythmic gymnastics for 9 years, where they used to tell her that she was “too fat”. But, as she said to the camera during this interview: “La gorda está triunfando” [the fat girl is now succeeding]. Later on, she briefly studied Audiovisual Communications, Physical Theatre and Dancing.
After performing in bars and restaurants as a jazz singer since she was 16 and independently publishing her music on YouTube for years, she starting working as a full-time musician in 2017, after releasing Esmeralda. Soon after, with the release of her first EP, La Sandunguera, she started receiving invitations to participate in shows and festivals across Spain, Europe and Latin America.
On 2020, she released her debut album, Calambre, which included powerful songs such as “Sana sana”, “Buenos Aires” and “Natikillah”.
Nathy Peluso: “Sana sana”
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Nathy Peluso Latest ‘Delito’ on Stephen Colbert show!