The Tiny Desk is working from home for the foreseeable future. Introducing NPR Music’s Tiny Desk (home) concerts, bringing you performances from across the country and the world. It’s the same spirit — stripped-down sets, an intimate setting — just a different space.
In celebration of National Hispanic Heritage Month, NPR Music presents four very special Tiny Desk Home Concerts recorded especially for this week. This video from global superstar Ozuna is a world premiere.
Oct. 16, 2020 | Stefanie Fernández — From a verdant room tucked away in Miami, Ozuna’s Tiny Desk performance might allow you, as it did me, to forget for a moment that he’s one of the most watched and listened-to artists on earth. For someone whose work often operates at galactic proportions, this performance of five songs makes room for Ozuna’s sweet tenor to take center-desk in a love letter to the global communities that supported and streamed him to god tier status.
The Puerto Rican singer kicks it off with a breezy rendition of “Caramelo” that leads into a solo version of the sun-drenched “Del Mar” from ENOC, his fourth album that he’s deemed a return to his roots. This pared-down performance makes good on that promise, reworking star-studded collaborations, like the ballad “Despeinada,” as they should be sung: languorously and with intimacy. Even the pop smash “Taki Taki” sounds brand new, buoyed by his alchemical flow and energy.
Ozuna is a crown jewel in the global crest of Latin pop, a movement whose modern success in reggaeton and Latin trap is indebted to the Caribbean genres Ozuna heard growing up in Puerto Rico, sounds like old-school reggaeton and reggae en español, dembow, dancehall and more. From then to now, Ozuna’s bare talent remains his greatest asset. It’s rare to see a star of his magnitude brush the earth so closely, and when it does, it’s even rarer for it to feel and sound like second nature.
Freddie “YoFred” Lugo: bass
Elí Bonilla: drums
Carlos Mercader: guitar
Benson Pagán: guitar
Edgardo Santiago: keys
Hector Meléndez: piano
Erick “Yonell” Pachecho: DJ
José Aponte: vocals
Video By: Miguel Gonzalez “UnEnano”
Director: Nuno Gomes
Audio By: Jose Rivera, Raymond Perez
Producer: Bobby Carter
Associate Producer: Stefanie Fernández
Audio Mastering Engineer: Josh Rogosin
Video Producer: Morgan Noelle Smith
Executive Producer: Lauren Onkey
Senior VP, Programming: Anya Grundmann