Edgar Barrera successful... without a magic wand

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Music is used to express oneself and Edgar Barrera, the young man who writes, produces and guides countless international singers to say what they want, knows this well.

This has been the case with Madonna, Camila Cabello, Ed Sheeran, Manuel Turizo, Christian Nodal and, this year, Bad Bunny, Grupo Frontera and Shakira.

Born in McAllen, Texas, but raised between Mexico and the United States, he is one of the authors and producers of The bossthe song by Shakira and Fuerza Regida that has become a hit since its release a week ago and has since achieved more than 33 million views on YouTube.

The song, Barrera tells Excelsioris an anthem for migrants, which talks about wage inequalities and opportunities.

The composer of Expensive clothesby Camilo, says that it was the Colombian who came up with the idea of The boss.

“She is very clear about what she wants to do. We rented a studio in Los Angeles and were creating music; there was her, Keytin (another of the authors and creator of Cob) and me, and the song flowed.

“Before dedicating myself to music I worked in a shopping center folding clothes and I had bosses; and he is that voice of the people who works hard and does not have enough money to pay the rent; Many times at home they tell you that by studying you will have results and a secure future and no, and they say 'what a hard life', it is trying to end that circle of making the boss rich even if he is poorly paid," he says. .

Then the issue was presented to the record label and it was they who proposed Fuerza Regida (TQM, Strawberry flavor). Shakira loved it and said “Let's give it.”

“That's where I come from (migration), my grandparents are migrants, they came to the United States, they worked in the fields, in the fields, and that's what we Latinos go through; to be that voice of the migrants,” he says.

Edgar thinks it's good that the lyrics mention Lili Melgar (the nanny of Shakira's children) and mention that she was not paid compensation (it is said that she was fired by Piqué without any payment) since, One of the stanzas Shakira mentions “They say there is no evil / That it lasts more than 100 years / But my father-in-law is still there who does not set foot in a grave”, a fact that has generated several comments on the networks.

"In the end, music is for that, to express oneself and art is to express oneself, and I think that for her it is a way to express what is happening, what she is feeling and to vent, and in the end, one as a producer and co-author, is there to support his ideas, to give the artist that security that he is there,” the singer emphasizes on the song that is #1 in trends on YouTube.

Barrera is also one of the authors of a x100to, the hit by Grupo Frontera and Bad Bunny, released last April, and which became #1 on all streaming platforms and entered lists such as Billboard 200.

The original idea for the song, he shares, had been “saved on his phone for a year and a half.” I couldn't find anyone to record it and “many artists passed it by (at first) because they didn't see it coming, because the arrangement was totally different. One day, with Frontera, they picked up the guitar, they loved it, they asked me and then we started putting it together and what happened happened.”

Then they looked for Bad Bunny “everyone wants to work with him” and it turned out that the Puerto Rican loves Mexican music and especially that of Frontera.

“There you realize that when the collaboration is so real and genuine, that it is not because of the numbers, these kinds of things happen, and it is one of the biggest songs we had this year.

“I didn't expect that result. Before launching it, she was very nervous to see what was going to happen, how they were going to take it. Whether you want it or not, there is a lot of insecurity at work, because perhaps the bar is too high and those expectations are not met, but in the end the result is very good,” she explains.

Just with that song, the author is nominated in the Song of the Year category at the Latin Grammys. This is one of the 13 appointments, among which Producer and Composer of the Year stand out.

“It is an honor to be nominated alongside artists that I admire so much like Shakira, Karol G, with whom I work almost every day and even more so, being Mexican, to be on that shortlist, because for me it is a lot of pride.

“I receive it with great humility and gratitude that my work is recognized,” he says about the awards that will be presented on November 16 in Seville, Spain.

Edgar has been nominated 40 times for the Latin Grammy and five for the Grammy and in 2021 he won the Latin Grammy for Producer of the Year. He seems like the Midas king of music, but he confesses that behind all this there is also insecurity.

“The day I lose that fear of making music, I will stop doing it, because you don't know (what will happen to a creation).

“It's not to downplay a song, but there are some that have had more results than others and I think they are going to be a great success and they end up not being one, but normal, or the other way around, you thought they were not going to enter global lists
and yes they do.”

A recent example of this is according to who, Carín León's song with Maluma that is rapidly climbing and has just entered the global charts; something that wasn't coming, she says.

When they wrote it on a “little afternoon,” he says, Maluma and Keytin were in the pool and he was outside with the guitar, the brainstorming began and they began to write it.

“We make music because we love it, but that day we weren't thinking 'we're going to write a song to get on the global chart.

“Yes, there is a lot of insecurity. One would like to have a magic wand or a crystal ball to look at and know if a song is going to be successful or not, but no,” she concludes.


“Whenever I'm composing with Keitin or Elena Rose, different songs come out every day.

“We get to the studio and say what we are going to talk about today.”

“I want to work with Luis Miguel!”

Edgar Barrera tells Excelsior that “if you know him, tell him I want to work with him. I'm a fan of yours and I have some ideas. The other day I was talking about it with my team and I want to look for him, but I don't know how to reach him, that's why it's El Sol de México, it's unreachable and if he reads the note, he should look for me.

“He is the artist I would like to sit down and work with. He would do something not urban, or anything like that, but boleros. I love boleros and doing something like that with it. I hope it happens.”

Other Latin Grammy nominations

Record of the year

The formula (Maluma & Marc Anthony).

Album of the year

From Inside to Outside (Camilo).

Song of the Year

POT (Camilo & Alejandro Sanz).

Song of the Year

an X100to

Edgar Barrera, (Grupo Frontera ft. Bad Bunny).

Best Pop Song

5:24 (Camilo).

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