Música mexicana is still on top of today’s charts. We see hitmakers like Peso Pluma, Gabito Ballesteros, and Chino Pacas taking over the world – but where are the collaborations with women in the genre?
Let’s make it very clear: women are present in the genre. Despite many of the same male names in the charts, women artists lead the Grammys’ Best Música Mexicana Album (Including Tejano) Category this year. Four out of five of the nominations were all women. The nominated albums included Ana Bárbara’s Bordado a Mano, Flor de Toloache’s Motherflower, Lila Downs’ La Sánchez, and Lupita Infante’s Amor Como en las Películas de Antes. There was only one male nominee – Peso Pluma – who won for his album GÉNESIS. But knowing how many women-led projects there are, what gives? Why don’t the men in the genre collaborate with the women who are also putting a fresh spin on classic sounds?
Last year, artists like Yahritza Y Su Esencia and the trio Conexión Divina gave us hope for a less male-dominated space in the now-mainstream genre. But at this time, we’re seeing the same male artists collaborate with each other, sporadically linking with women artists in música mexicana. Instead of maintaining a boys’ club, we would love to see artists like La Doble P or Grupo Frontera team up with an artist like Estevie to deliver a norteño cumbia rather than another collaboration with the same dudes. Can you imagine eydrey’s soft vocals with Junior H’s? Because we sure can!
The Gabito Ballesteros-Peso Pluma-Junior H combo is a fool-proof formula for a hit at this point. Even Ballesteros credits these collaborations as part of the reason why the genre is so successful. “[Collaborations] have also allowed us to further establish what música mexicana is. [There’s power in] collaborating, [in] supporting each other, [in] helping each other out,” he told Remezcla earlier this year.
But besides that trio, there are endless possibilities to tap into other styles and talent, especially when there’s an obvious need to diversify the corridos movement. And now that we know collabs in música mexicana work, why not further push the genre and welcome women to collaborate? From Estilo Sin Limite to Natalia Lopez, here are six women in the música mexicana realm you need to know.
Estilo Sin Limite
Let’s start with Rancho Humilde’s Estilo Sin Limite, an ensemble that’s already making waves. Fronted by Dania Valenzuela, the Mexican group explores corridos tumbados, sad corridos, rap, electronic music, and more. Recently, Estilo Sin Limite teamed up with Mexican pop star Thalia on her first corrido tumbado called “Choro.” The two showcase more raspier vocals, giving the listener a different taste of Thalia’s signature pop-friendly voice. Although Estilo Sin Limite has already collaborated with male artists like Hernan Trejo, Easau Ortiz, and Lancer Lirical, we would love to see more men support her peculiar cutting-edge vocals. Her voice can echo a similar style to Peso Pluma’s or Chino Pacas’, serving those grating notes that fit well on corridos tumbados.
Though Mexican-American artist eydrey – born Adriana Olivas Ureno – is new in the música mexicana space, she sounds like a pro. She released her first sad corrido “QUIERO LLORAR Y NO PUEDO” in September, showcasing a new side of her artistry. Last year, she participated in the Netflix singing competition show La Firma, with judges like Rauw Alejandro, Nicki Nicole, and Yandel. Though the program was described as a “Latin Urban competition series,” eydrey also sings other genres such as R&B, soft reggaeton, bedroom pop, and now sad corridos. As of now, she remains an independent artist and primarily uses TikTok to promote her music.
Let’s talk about Michelle BI – also known as Michelle Bojórquez – a Sonoran singer in the corrido tumbado scene. Her music, which she describes as “hot corridos” is known to break stereotypes. She does this by singing about women she’s attracted to in songs like “Le Gusta” and “Me Pone Mal” from her latest album, Mi Maldición (2023). Since 2021, she’s worked with male artists like Yerai R, Javier Arvayo, Eduardo Soto, and Clave 502, but we hope to hear her hard-hitting voice on other features. We can envision a “hot corrido” with Natanael Cano or Chino Pacas.
Tania Dominguez is another Rancho Humilde artist innovating the música mexicana soundscape. The Mexican-American artist started her music career in Dec. 2021, and since then, she’s collaborated with artists like Ivonne Galáz on songs like “Ojitos Lindos” and “No Puedo Olvidarte.” Dominguez’s melancholic voice is soothing, fit for her calm sierreño and jazz-inspired music. She shows this new side of music in her debut album Mi Cautela, released last November. To match her smooth voice, we can envision collaborations with artists that sing in more soft ranges similar to Junior H. Let’s just say she’s a go-to for those who love a romantic song.
We already know Estevie knows how to deliver a cumbia banger. However, her voice is chameleon-like and fit for a range of música mexicana subgenres. As of now, she’s been featured in música mexicana songs like the cumbia norteña “Cuéntame” with ERRE, as well as the DannyLux-assisted song “Triste Verano” that boasted sierreño elements. Another track that highlights her vocals on top of an accordion and deep bass is “como yo,” which is a peak demonstration of what her cumbia norteña side is capable of. We could definitely see a collaboration with the likes of Grupo Frontera. Sounds like a hit, doesn’t it?
Last but not least, Natalia López is another woman in música mexicana innovating a more hushed vocal and softer ballad approach. Signed by Rancho Humilde, she released her newest album, Mil Pedazos, in October 2023. Her most popular singles include “Mil Pedazos,” “Faltó,” and “Ojos Cerrados.” Her dreamy vocals paired with soft guitar strings could be what’s next in today’s trendy coquette climate. As far as potential collaborations with men go, with her sweet and romantic tone, she’d be fit for hopping on a song with Junior H or Eslabon Armado, which have the range for softer sierreño or ballad pieces.