Gerardo Ortiz has released Más Caro Que Ayer under Sony Music Latin and Badsin Entertainment today (Feb. 21) — his first album since 2017, and after cutting ties in 2019 with longtime record label DEL Records.
“For a really long time now I’ve been wanting to release this new album, but we were very busy last year and we were focusing on finishing two albums at once,” the regional Mexican chart-topping artist tells Billboard. “We also had some setbacks and with the change of team and record label, it took us a while.”
The majority of the songs on Más Caro Que Ayer, which was recorded between Los Angeles, Mexico City and Sinaloa, Mexico, were penned by Ortiz. He did tap other songwriters to co-write a few tracks on the album, such as “Callada” and “Otra Borrachera.”
“I like to give other songwriters a shot. There are many great songwriters from Sinaloa,” he explains. “Giving them an opportunity makes my album more complete. Everyone brings in different stories and stories.”
Más Caro Que Ayer was one of the two albums Ortiz was working on, the other being a celebratory album to mark his decade in music (it’s expected to be released later this year). “We are celebrating 10 years of trajectory and I wanted to make an album for the pueblo. Something my grandma or my aunt can listen to at home,” Ortiz says.
Ortiz remembers his first experience with ballads and romantic songs. “I came from the world of corridos but when I started writing more romantic lyrics, artists like Banda MS and Lupillo [Rivera] started recording my songs,” he says. “I remember one day I sent my song ‘Amor Confuso’ to a band and then I thought, ‘that song is actually very special to me,’ and so I decided to record it myself and it became a hit. It was great, because I had a whole list of romantic songs under my mattress that I wanted to record.”
The well-rounded 18-set Más Caro Que Ayer includes corridos, for which Ortiz is known for, as well as ballads, norteño-tinged tracks and a mariachi version of “Otra Borrachera.”
Below, Ortiz breaks down five essential tracks on Más Caro Que Ayer, exclusively for Billboard.
I already had an idea about what I wanted the hook to be in this song, but then I started working with songwriter Ruben Salazar, and together we created this chorus and a beautiful hook. A melancholic song was born — but it’s also a happy song. It’s very unique and it allowed us to record two versions: one banda and the other with mariachi. I finally decided which version is my favorite: the banda one. Although it sounds great with mariachi, too.
“Más Caro Que Ayer”
I had already written a corrido about this character titled “Leyenda Caro Quintero (Legendary Caro Quintero).” It was a huge song in my career and people really liked it. This song is more the story of when this controversial character returns to his hometown in Mexico. The title is also inspired by an interview I saw on television, where authorities announced they had increased monetary reward for any tips on Quintero’s location. So the idea came to me: “más caro que ayer,” or “more expensive than yesterday.”
It’s a very ranchero corrido and it’s similar to other corridos I had recorded, like “Damaso” and “Quién Se Anima.”
This song is a whole different world. It’s a very sultry song and I like it because this song challenged me and made me get out of my comfort zone. The song requires me to sing high notes and I’m not used to that. I fall in love with any song that challenges me. I made this song mine and it’s something different for me.
I have to say I love all of the songs on this album but honestly this is a great corrido. I wanted to release this song first from the album and for it to become a No. 1, it’s a very strong song that could have been released as the first single from the album. We’ll be recording a video for this song when we come back from touring in Colombia.