April 17, 2024


Buzz The Music

The Mexican American Singer Producing a New Latin Audio Subgenre

In the opening days of 2024, a groundbreaking new sound vibrated during the marketplace, capturing the top spot on Billboard’s Sizzling Latin Songs chart. The electrifying corridos observe “La Diabla” (“She Devil”) was by newcomer Xavi, a relatively unknown 19-12 months-previous Mexican American artist providing an equally mysterious sound.

The tumbados románticos one — which tells the tale of a terrible boy’s romance with a negative woman — is crafted with the crisp strains of a requinto guitar — a signature instrument in regional Mexican new music. But it’s Xavi’s mixture of the rebellious corridos tumbados spirit with the tenderness of romance that sets him aside.

Nonetheless, “La Diabla” almost by no means came to be. “I DM’ed him and he would not respond to me,” remembers Interscope government vp Nir Seroussi. He uncovered Xavi in early 2021 thanks to the label’s A&R govt, Emerson Redd, who shared the soul-stirring guitar ballad “Te Quiero” with him. Intrigued by the artist’s raw emotion, Seroussi was identified to meet the young star — and his persistence compensated off.

Right after two months, Xavi arrived at the Interscope places of work in Miami, guitar in hand, and performed for almost an hour. “It was appreciate at to start with sight,” suggests Seroussi, who noticed in Xavi not just a musician but an “old soul,” with a profound ability to link. “He has all people attributes that differentiate a hobbyist from an individual who could be a genuine artist, a occupation artist. It wasn’t about figures. I fell in enjoy with Xavi, the artist.” Seroussi signed him to a document deal later on that year.

Raised in Phoenix and Sonora, Mexico, the artist born Joshua Xavier Gutiérrez suggests that his bicultural upbringing deeply influenced his individual new music, which blends Mexican corridos traditions with modern-day rhythms. “We are the very first technology to transfer right here, to give [ourselves] a superior everyday living,” Xavi suggests in Spanish.

Xavi photographed on January 11, 2024 in Los Angeles.

Daniel Prakopcyk

He drew early inspiration from his grandfather’s church singing — “when he sang, he did so with so considerably sensation, he sang with enjoy for God” — as perfectly as the emotive voices of Mexican crooners in bands like Camila and Sin Bandera. However, the initially song he learned to engage in on guitar was “Baby” by Justin Bieber. At just 12 many years old, Xavi wrote his 1st original tune by 16, he commenced releasing his songs to streaming platforms under Baga Audio.

Around the very same time, the corridos tumbados motion, led by Natanael Cano, had taken the web by storm, paving the way for hit-makers like Peso Pluma, Fuerza Regida and Luis R Conriquez to split by way of. In parallel, the transferring and melancholic melodies of unfortunate sierreño emerged, led by a new forged of Mexican American Gen Z acts these kinds of as Ivan Cornejo, DannyLux and Yahritza y Su Esencia. Xavi navigates in between the two with his personal pressure of tumbados románticos, a subgenre he coined as a musician elevated on each sides of the U.S.-Mexico border. (His putting ruby, pearl and diamond necklace, a quintessential image of urbano lifestyle, also symbolizes his fusion of eclectic sounds.)

On the other hand, his path to achievements was just about anything but smooth. A close to-deadly motor vehicle accident in 2021 that resulted in a cracked cranium and an altered facial construction drastically transformed his point of view. “It was a lousy strike,” Xavi says, “but it transformed my daily life.” Alternatively than deterring him, it motivated him: In the aftermath of the accident, video clips of Xavi, bandaged and actively playing the guitar while recovering, commenced circulating on TikTok, fostering a deeper bond involving followers and the mounting artist.

In early 2022, right after his restoration, Xavi channeled his experience into his songs, emerging as a tumbados románticos pioneer. Within five months, he launched a string of singles under Interscope, every single marked by poetic lyrics and haunting acoustic riffs. These solo endeavours, interspersed with a couple collaborations with Los Primos del Este and Eduardo Soto, culminated in the release of his My Mom’s Playlist EP in May well 2023. The seven-observe established, an homage to his mom, highlighted renditions of beloved Latin music like Maná’s “Rayando el Sol” and Luis Miguel’s “Ahora Te Puedes Marchar” reimagined in his sierreño model. “She’d usually ask me to sing these songs she’d perform when cleansing in the morning,” he remembers.


Xavi’s supervisor, Raczon López, who came on board at the same time, then served leverage his social existence and form his most significant hits to day. At the conclude of December, Xavi debuted on the Billboard Hot 100 with not one particular but two entries: “La Diabla” and “La Víctima,” which have considering that achieved peaks of No. 22 and No. 55, respectively. His worldwide attractiveness is even more evidenced by his existence on the Billboard Global 200 and Worldwide Excl. U.S. charts, with “La Diabla” reaching the best five on both.

“If you detect, Xavi is a child who is not on social media a great deal, so there is this thriller in [his] vocation,” López claims. “People are eager to hear what’s following.” He adds that what Xavi has by now introduced is only a preview of his prospective: “This kid sings pop, mariachi, R&B — I suggest, every little thing suits him… Individuals will step by step see the diverse sides of Xavi.”

Obtaining lately signed with WME, Xavi is presently making ready for an upcoming tour. But as Seroussi sees it, there’s no rush. He compares Xavi’s development to that of award-profitable superstar (and labelmate) Billie Eilish, emphasizing personalized expansion together with musical evolution.

“When [Interscope CEO] John Janick signed Billie, she was 14. It took a few years to create her, not just as an artist, but as a person,” Seroussi says. “It’s about the activities, the lifetime lived that feeds into the maturity of songs and songwriting. Which is what we see in Xavi — a star who was constantly destined to glow.”

Xavi photographed on January 11, 2024 in Los Angeles.

Xavi photographed on January 11, 2024 in Los Angeles.

Daniel Prakopcyk

This tale will show up in the Jan. 27, 2024, problem of Billboard.