Like many artists, 2020 was a promising year for Los Rabanes that included an anniversary concert at the Coliseo de Puerto Rico in March and a tour across Latin America and the U.S. The pandemic, however, had other plans for the Panamanian band.
“We tried reprogramming the concert in Puerto Rico for August 1st, following all of the safety rules but there was an outbreak of coronavirus in Panama and Puerto Rico and it was impossible,” Emilio Regueira, lead singer of Rabanes, tells Billboard, assuring that fans who already bought there tickets would be able to use them once the show is rescheduled.
This year, the ska-rock band, composed by Regueira, Christian “Pipon” Torres, Javier Saavedra, and Randy Cuevas, celebrates 25 years since the release of their debut album ¿Por qué te fuiste Benito?.
Hailing from the city of Chitré in Panama, Los Rabanes are categorized for their energetic lyrics and rock fusions with Panamanian reggae, punk, tropical, and other rhythms as heard in their timeless hits “Señorita A Mi Me Gusta Su Style,” “Bam Bam,” and “Everybody.”
In 2007, they became the first Central American band to win a Latin Grammy after nabbing the best rock album by a duo/group with vocals award for Kamikaze. On the Billboard charts, they have secured spots on Hot Latin Songs, Latin Airplay, Latin Pop Airplay, Tropical Airplay, Top Latin Albums, and Latin Pop Albums.
“We couldn’t let this year pass by without celebrating 25 years since the release of our first album,” Regueira emphasizes, adding that the show must go on. “Thankfully, we were able to find another alternative and we’ll be doing a live stream concert from our Insomnio Studios in Panama.”
On Saturday, Aug. 29, Rabanes will present their first-ever virtual concert, where they will be joined by a wave of colleagues from the Rock en Español scene including La Ley’s Beto Cuevas, La Mosca Tsé – Tsé, Los Pericos, and Azul Azul, to name a few. Puerto Rican influencers Daniel El Travieso and El Molusco will also make cameos.
“We’re very excited,” he says. “If there’s anything that I’ve learned from COVID, it’s to live day by day, week by week, month by month. We’ve had to learn how to adapt during these past months and we’ve been doing a lot of interesting stuff. In true Rabanes fashion, vamos a tirar la casa por la ventana…but virtually.”
As for what’s the band’s secret to staying together for over two decades? Emilio says brotherhood and communication are key.
“Most groups fight a lot and when success comes, everything breaks. Rabanes has had arguments and fights over things that really don’t matter today,” Regueira admits. “We decided to start a family and walk the same journey. If we have problems, we talk about it.”
Los Rabanes 25th anniversary live stream will premiere at 8:00 p.m. ET on Saturday, Aug. 29 on LaMusica. Tickets are available here.