Latin Grammys 2018
Luis Fonsi & Daddy Yankee Celebrate 'Despacito' Topping Hot 100: 'Music Unites Us' (Exclusive)
"Language isn't a factor," Fonsi tells Billboard, while Daddy Yankee adds: "We are crossing cultural barriers."
As previously reported, Luis Fonsi and Daddy Yankee crown the Billboard Hot 100 chart (dated May 27) with their Justin Bieber-assisted "Despacito," which rises 3-1. An incredibly rare feat for a core Latin song, it marks the first time in more than 20 years that a primarily Spanish-language song has crowned the all-genre tally, since Los Del Rio's "Macarena," powered by its Bayside Boys remix, ruled the chart for 14 weeks in 1996.
Fonsi told Billboard upon learning of the coronation of "Despacito," "It feels amazing to know that a mostly Spanish song is No. 1. Language isn't a factor. Music unites us!"
The remix, which begins with a new English verse by Bieber, does not stray far from its original version throughout the rest of the track. Bieber joins in on the all-Spanish chorus, while Fonsi adds one transcribed English line later in the song.
Daddy Yankee also shared his joy with Billboard after finding out the news, beaming, "Wow, this is definitely not only a big achievement for Luis Fonsi and for me, but it's a big achievement for music in general. We are crossing cultural barriers and unifying the world through music."
"Despacito" concurrently spends a 15th week atop the Hot Latin Songs chart, where it first reigned on Feb. 18, then fueled only by its original all-Spanish version. The release of the remix with Bieber on April 17 catapulted the track into the top 10 (48-9) of the Hot 100 (where it had previously peaked at No. 44).
The pop/urban track stays true to the Latin rhythms that have been dominating the genre in recent years. "To me, you have two very catchy choruses," Daddy Yankee says. "The main chorus ['Despacito'] and the pre-chorus ['pasito a pasito'], both with something very special that the world embraced. They have magic, and a melody that everyone could relate to. Add to it the instrumentation, combined with the reggaeton sound, which has become popular worldwide."
Adds Fonsi, "'Despacito' is a mix of Latin, pop and urban flavors. The rhythm is contagious and people are connecting to it. I'm honored to have worked with Daddy Yankee and Justin Bieber."