The “Tusa” and “Bichota” singer will have reason to celebrate with blue-haired fans. This week, she scored a Grammy nomination for the Best Música Urbana Album for her latest disc, KG0516. She also recently won a Latin Grammy for Best Reggaeton Performance Latin for “Bichota.”
Because Karol G (real name: Carolina Giraldo) is on everyone’s mind and on the way, New Times has decided to reflect on her impressive career. Here’s what we feel are Karol G’s ten best songs to date, including those she’s featured on.
Who would think a song in which Karol G brags about her pum-pum would earn her a Latin Grammy? Karol G has insisted that the track — which topped Billboard’s U.S. Latin Airplay chart — has a message of self-worth and female empowerment.
“Ahora Me Llama”
On the 2017 trap duet with Bad Bunny, the heartbroken becomes the heartbreaker as Karol G rejects an ex who came crawling back. She makes it clear that she’s over him, enjoying being single and confident as ever. Also: She only wears clothes imported from Dubai. You could say this was the breakthrough hit that launched Karol G’s career and helped mark a shift in the male-dominated reggaeton genre.
This duet with Ozuna sees both artists in search of a reconciliation with their respective exes. So, in other words, it’s the exact opposite of “Ahora Me Llama.” The song is a deep cut off of Karol G’s most recent album, KG0516, and it probably isn’t even one of the two or three most popular Karol G-Ozuna collaborations — but it deserves a bit of shine.
How knows if Karol G and former fiancé Anuel AA belong together — that’s between them. Still, the exes have great chemistry in the recording studio. As heard on this forbidden love trap song, their first of many collaborations together, Karol G’s soft vocals compliment Anuel’s gruff delivery.
Accompanied only by a piano, Karol G gushes about being head-over-heels in love on this titular song off her sophomore album. It doesn’t seem that the stripped-down ballad dedicated to Anuel AA was an attempt to demonstrate her versatility — but if it was, Karol G succeeded.
“Ay, Dios Mío!”
Karol G reminisces about how she and Anuel AA came to be on this poppy, biographical love story and includes the sort of personal details you don’t always get from celebrity couples. Calling him by his first name, Karol G says Emma, short for Emmanuel Gazmey Santiago, wrote out of the blue to say he loves her music. Not the sort of thing you’d expect from the macho Anuel AA, right? The story then moves to the nightclub where the two drank rosé and danced, followed by Anuel trying to take her home. Now there’s the Anuel AA we know.
“Miedito o Qué?”
Producer Ovy On the Drums steps out from behind the sound booth to sing on this breezy song about making the first move, and he has his favorite collaborator Karol G and the always-soothing Danny Ocean join him. Many probably noticed that the song includes a brief verse from Ocean’s massive hit “Me Rehuso,” only it’s reworked and sung by Karol G.
It’s not every day that listeners get served a reggaeton song with a hint of country music. Other than maybe Kane Brown’s “Lost In the Middle of Nowhere” with Becky G, the two genres rarely cross paths. And that’s what makes Karol G’s twangy collabo with Anuel AA and J Balvin a fun and refreshing venture — sort of like a reggaeton version of “Old Town Road.” Plus, it gave us one of Balvin’s better rap verses.
Anuel AA’s infidelity anthem would be a reggaeton sausage fest if not for Karol G. She joins fellow features Ozuna, Daddy Yankee, and J Balvin on the track — which samples Shaggy’s “It Wasn’t Me” — and reminds us that men aren’t the only ones who can enjoy an unfaithful night out at the club.
As the story goes, Karol G originally wanted to collaborate with Nicki Minaj on a different song, but Minaj wasn’t feeling that track and asked for another. Enter: “Tusa,” Karol G’s song about heartbreak (or tusa, as it’s known in Colombia). Minaj added her explicit Spanglish verses and helped Karol G deliver an undeniably catchy breakup anthem that has surpassed over a billion Spotify streams and YouTube views.
Karol G. 8 p.m. Friday, at FTX Arena, 601 Biscayne Blvd., Miami; 786-777-1000; ftxarena.com. Tickets cost $36.95 to $96.95 via ticketmaster.com.