Alejandra Guzmán comes face-to-face with her demons in her newly released single “Lado Oscuro (Dark Side),” a confessional power ballad that finds the Mexican rock icon as vulnerable as ever.
“We all have that side, the dark side. Even the moon has a dark side,” Guzmán tells Billboard. “[In ‘Lado Oscuro’] I am talking about myself and what I’ve learned in life. I am talking about making peace with my own demons instead of taking care of them or hiding them.”
Known for her anthemic rock en español tracks such as “Eternamente Bella” and “Mala Hierba” and characterized by her hoarse vocals and fierce, rebellious attitude, Guzmán is set to release a new album this year. Without revealing much, she previews it will stay true to her “old sound with a new Alejandra” twist.
In honor of her new single “Lado Oscuro,” the rock star answered 20 questions for Billboard.
1. What was the first song you ever wrote?
The first song I wrote by myself was “Larga Distancia De Ansiedad” but the first song that was about me was “Yo Te Esperaba,” inspired by a letter that I wrote to my daughter. And I have 300 songs now!
2. What’s the last song you listened to?
“Don’t Stop Believin'” by Journey.
3. What artist, dead or alive, would you like to see in concert?
Queen and Michael Jackson.
4. What song always makes you cry?
“I Don’t Want to Miss a Thing” by Aerosmith
5. What series have you binge-watched during the pandemic?
A couple: Peaky Blinders, Breaking Bad and Shameless.
6. If you weren’t a musician, what would you do?
When I was small, I wanted to be a dentist or an orthodontist … Or also maybe I would be a politician.
7. What’s something about yourself that your fans don’t know and would surprise us?
That I am a highly-organized person.
8. What advice would you give your younger self?
To sometimes say no.
9. What are you afraid of?
I am afraid of not being listened to or not reaching my goals. But sometimes I am also afraid of myself.
10. Who’s on your bucket list to collaborate with?
Metallica, Bruno Mars, Billie Eilish, The Weeknd and Pharrell.
11. What’s the craziest thing you’ve seen happen in the crowd of one of your sets?
They fight, they get naked, they throw themselves. One time, the whole crowd came on stage and I had to run because the police wanted to close the concert. The fans got mad and they were really drunk and then I hid in a trash can. That was in 1991. And another time, I saw somebody throwing a drink and it started a fight at a palenque so they started shooting. My amplifier case was shot. Of course, I ran away that time!
12. What do you spend too much money on?
I used to spend a lot in clothes but now I recycle a lot. But if I love something, I don’t care and I’ll buy it.
13. What’s one song you wish you had written?
The Beatles’ “Let It Be.”
14. Your birthday is coming up this month. How do you usually celebrate?
I don’t like to make plans because when you don’t plan anything you have a better time. Sometimes I host parties but then you just end up taking care of all the guests and just serving everyone else.
15. What are you most grateful for today?
I am grateful that I am sober, that I am healthy and that I am working.
16. How do you imagine your first in-person concert to be like?
I think I am going to cry! I am going to sweat a lot, too, but this is what I was born to do.
17. What inspires your music nowadays?
My life is what inspires me and what I live day by day. To be in love. When I am angry. It depends on the emotions but I like to write stories. The best is to have a theme and go with that theme. And it’s easy if you tell the truth and you talk about your own life. I think it’s more difficult if you are trying to make up a story.
18. Why did you choose “Lado Oscuro” as the first single to preview your new album?
Because this is the best moment to say that we all have that side, the dark side. Even the moon has a dark side. In this song, that I produced, I am talking about myself, what I’ve learned in life and to live in the moment. I am talking about making peace with my own demons instead of taking care of them or hiding them. I think it’s a very deep song, I love it and I believe in it.
19. What can fans expect from your upcoming album?
It will be a great album with a great sound. It’s my old sound with a new Alejandra.
20. Finish this sentence: In 2021, I will …
I will kick ass.