Following the successful launch of Billboard En Vivo with Prince Royce in New York and Chicago earlier this month, the intimate concert series leading up to the 2015 Billboard Latin Music Conference made its way to Hollywood, where J Balvin delivered an energetic set on April 15.
Flanked by dancers and a live band, the Latin urban sensation indulged a mostly female crowd of devotees at The Sayers Club with party anthems such as “6 A.M.” and “Ay Vamos.”
Before his performance, the Medellin, Colombia, native sat down with Billboard’s Leila Cobo to dish on his new album, share the meaning behind his tattoos, give props to his musical idols and explain just what makes Colombian reggaeton so great.
“We’ve got fresh lyrics, great storytelling, and our reggaeton is slower, although it’s going to speed up now with the new single,” teased Balvin, who is up for 12 awards at this year’s Billboard Latin Music Awards, including new artist of the year.
Sipping on coffee as he typically does on Instagram, Balvin encapsulated his vision for the new album in one memorable line: “We want to make history.”
Expanding on the concept, the 29-year-old artist born Jose Alvaro Osorio Balvin said, “One of the people that I admire the most within the genre is Daddy Yankee, so the idea is to do a new-school Barrio Fino [Yankee’s seminal 2004 album, known for the game-changing ‘Gasolina’].”
“It’s full of hits, from the first to the last track,” Balvin added. “And while they may not all necessarily be radio hits, they’ll get played in the street. I want people to relate to every song.”
Though he didn’t reveal the name of the album, Balvin did say it’s coming out in 2015, and confirmed that it will be supported by his own headlining tour later this year. The singer opened for Enrique Iglesias and Pitbull on their U.S. arena tour in 2014.
Next up, Balvin will headline the “New Latin Urban Movement” panel at the 2015 Billboard Latin Music Conference and will perform at the awards show, airing live on Telemundo on April 30. He’ll also be making another stop on Billboard’s En Vivo Tour in Miami (April 29).