El Abayarde - Tego Calderon

Jiggeri Records

With his signature ‘fro and oversized sunglasses, Tego Calderon is winning over a new generation of Puerto Ricans who are growing tired of salsa’s sappy corazones and the gangsta clichés of rap en espanol.His rapid fire rhymes actually have much in common with the original salseros of the 60s and 70s who used to sing about everyday life. Tego confesses, “These guys were my idols. They made salsa that was powerful and from the streets. It said something real.” But, it’s his attitude more than Tego’s sound that reflects his old school salsa heroes. He’s one of the leaders of Puerto Rico’s reggaeton revolution; a mix of digital dancehall beats, hip hop and Latin rhythms like Bomba. His debut disc is called El Abayarde … the name of a pesky little fire ant, a nickname Tego’s grandmother gave him because of his biting lyrics. But, Tego tries to balance the weight of his lyrics with some good-natured fun. “It can’t always be about the struggle,” he says. “Sometimes people just want to party and not think about their problems.”