Gloria Estefan Talks 'Miss Little Havana': Video Track-By-Track
After a four year hiatus, Gloria Estefan returns with her English -- or "Spanglish" as she calls it -- album, "Miss Little Havana." Estefan delved into her 14th studio album differently than her previous projects, recruiting Pharrell Williams as executive producer. Pharrell came to Estefan with the titled track, "Miss Little Havana," which he'd written specifically for her. Before either of them knew it, Estefan and Pharrell had wrapped up a naughty but nice dance album.
"I gotta tell you this is one of the most fun projects I've ever done," Estefan told Billboard.com "Pharrell and I really clicked. We captured a lot of raw emotion. We got a really good gamut of what we considered different kinds of dance music from Pharrell's world and from mine."
Before "Miss Little Havana" hit stores today (Sept. 27), Estefan sat down with Billboard.com to discuss all 13 songs on the album. The legendary singer discussed the powerful Latin vibes through out the album and the chemistry in the studio. Check out Gloria Estefan's video track-by-track above and find out on which song does Estefan's daugher, Emily Marie, make her guitarist debut.
1. "Miss Little Havana"
"It's kind of 80s freestyle mixed with Pharrell's urban sensibilities brought to present day."
2. "Can't Believe"
"There's very little bass on the whole record. Usually it's the 808s that are carrying the low end. So this song does have a bass that comes in that takes the song into overdrive."
"I love 'Heat'! Pharrell arranged and performed the first nine tracks on the record. He had done amazing arrangements of percussion but I really wanted to bring real percussion to the project. We've got the timbales and the congas just kind of battling it out."
"It's about how the working man and how anybody have a great time with music and dance… I wanted to give it a very carnival, festival feeling, the type you hear in street parties in Brazil and Cuba, that people would go down the streets dancing to, just a crazy Caribbean feel to it."
5. "Say Ay"
"The horns are actually carrying the bulk of the harmonic background of this record which I find really cool and different."
6. "So Good"
"This is a straight up Cumbia directly from Colombia. We used the actual drums, and also the drums that are used in typical Cumbia. In a nutshell, this is about Pharrell, horns and drums.
7. "Right Away"
"This was my kids' favorite song. Something about it speaks to them, it's kind of reminiscent of old 70s disco, it's got the wawa guitar that we put in. Goes from very sweet to nasty, and I love that."
8. "Make Me Say Yes"
"'Make Me Say Yes' is reminiscent of early 90s techno pop. I love this because it's got a lot of layered vocals on it, very different sound from the rest of the record; it's one of my favorites from the get go."
9. "Time is Ticking Away"
"I wanted to have at least one ballad for my fans because this has been who I am throughout my career. It's literally talking about my memories growing up in Miami."
10. "Hotel Nacional"
"We wanted a very woody, old fashioned sound, cause its jitterbuggy this song. It's got clarinets, it's got saxes, and a whole different vibe-it just sounds like you could be in the 20s but with hardcore dance."
"We wanted it to be very world African sounding. My little girl is shredding on the guitar, all the guitar is Emily playing the solos - she added this very cool, rock edgy solo to this African sounding beat."
12. "Make My Heart Go"
"The brass section is killer. You could strip out the dance part and it is a straight up Merengue from Santo Domingo but it's got this really hard edge."
"To me, music has always been medicine. Music, dance, those things that unite us as human beings."