Smith tells the story in a behind-the-scenes clip from the music video he and Bomba shot in Los Angeles last week.
“Hola, mamacita! Go get me a birra!” Smith raps over Fiesta’s electronica loops, which contrast with the song’s tropical, Colombian folk vibe, borrowed form the Barranquilla Carnival on the Atlantic Coast.
That fusion of rhythms proved irresistible to Smith.
“I was in Colombia, in Ibagué, with Marc Anthony, and he was listening to ‘Fuego’ [another Bomba track],” Smith says in the video. “And I said, ‘That song is crazy!’ And almost completely unrelated, my manager Miguel is friends with people in [Sony Music Latin, Bomba’s label], and he showed me this song, ‘Fiesta.’ And I said, ‘That is crazy, I need to be on that.’”
The “Fiesta” remix features Smith rapping in English and Spanish over Bomba’s original arrangement. The video has been reimagined too, by director Carlos Perez. The original was a psychedelic piece that featured dancing to the backdrop of neon lights. The remix is far more elaborate, with dozens of dancers in a more urban setting.
“This is the first time I’ve been on a record in over 10 years,” says Smith. “Thank you for allowing me to bathe in your greatness.”
The original “Fiesta” is nominated for a Latin Grammy in the record of the year category.