In 2021, Bad Bunny’s spot as one of music’s most influential artists is undeniable, and he has the receipts to prove it. After sweeping the Latin Billboard Awards last month with an impressive 10 wins, receiving a nomination for Album of The Year at this year’s Latin Grammys, and 2020’s YHLQMDLG becoming the highest-charting all-Spanish album on the Billboard 200, El Conejo Malo has little to prove at this point—there’s really no stopping him or his influence on pop culture anytime soon.
But his impact on Latine cultures goes beyond his highly anticipated albums or chart-topping hits. His refreshing take on gender norms and vocal stances on progressive issues have garnered praise for helping steer reggaeton into a new, more inclusive direction, which is something that has resonated with both fans and his peers in the industry.
The superstar’s fandom also includes fellow musicians who have placed their own spin on some of his most popular singles. From Spain to Mexico and Puerto Rico, artists are transforming Bad Bunny’s trap beats into soft acoustic ballads, ‘80s synth bangers, and punk-pop covers that encompass the Spanish-speaking world’s rich musical landscape. Because one version is simply not enough, here are 10 of some of our favorite Bad Bunny renditions.
The Marías - “DÁQUITI”
This new Spotify Singles cover is quintessential The Marías—and that’s exactly why we love it. María Zardoya’s signature whispery vocals and layered harmonies are mesmerizingly beautiful and possess a certain intimate quality that lures listeners into a gentle trance. We can’t help but feel like we’re floating away somewhere while listening, almost as if we’re being transported to some beautiful island or a dimly lit lounge full of interesting people. This is where The Marías’ magic typically lies: music that creates a surrealist experience that captivates an entire room. It’s effortlessly cool from the getgo with its funk beats and soft bass, and the song’s rap lyric is perfectly slowed down to match the instrumentals’ smooth tempo. And like many of the songs on their latest album, “CINEMA,” the cover’s composition provides a warm ambiance that progressively picks up steam throughout the track, building up to a crescendo that calls for some light dancing in your kitchen. The dreamy track also ventures into psychedelic pop and R&B territories to create something that sounds, overall, very current.
“I’ve been a fan of reggaeton since I was little, and listening to it is a nostalgic experience that takes me back to my beloved island of Puerto Rico,” Zardoya, the band’s frontwoman, said in a statement.
maye - “La Canción”
Another soft and airy vocal from a female artist, maye’s cover of “La Canción” is more than what some listeners might initially think. The seemingly timid performance is anything but, with the Venezuelan-American singer’s unabashed confidence coming through in her effortless flow and ability to jump from rap verses to vocal riffs without skipping a beat. maye nearly demands the listener’s attention during this laidback cover, as the background’s pounding bass sets the beat for a razor-sharp delivery. There are some clear R&B and synth elements to the track that help reinvent the lyric’s message as well. The song, originally about a drunken love, now feels more like a lustful (and maybe fond) remembrance of a flame that never fully went out. This maye track is an easy listen with its charm and smooth execution.
FrioLento - “La Santa”
Having previously released a handful of other reggaeton covers, FrioLento is the Chilean band that can make a Karol G track sound like it belongs at an underground post-punk concert. Consisting of Zebart and Cris Alejandro, the alternative group came on to the music scene in 2018 before eventually catching the internet’s attention with their retro covers of some of our favorite reggaeton hits. Their rendition of Karol G’s “Bichota” was their first remix to go viral, now with over 1.4 million views on YouTube and over half a million listens on Spotify. Along with the help of fellow post-punk artist Saúl De Los Santos, their cover of Bad Bunny’s “La Santa” is a mixture of brooding vocals and catchy chord progressions with a hint of a rebellious spirit. A rolling drum beat replaces the original song’s bass for some added tempo while still making it prime dancefloor material.
Wiplash - “Yonaguni”
Wiplash’s origin story is a bit of a whirlwind tale about four teenagers stuck at home during the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic. While pursuing music individually on TikTok, the bandmates eventually met on the app and decided to form a punk band that just recently signed with Virgin Music México. The final result is an internet sensation that pulls from all of the members’ musical tastes, including trap, pop, and, of course, rock. Their punk-pop cover of “Yonaguni” has a different vibe to the original, but it still works with the rock themes we saw in Bad Bunny’s latest album, El Último Tour Del Mundo. The song’s rock vocals are also pretty close to the rapper’s deep register, and the teen angst is palpable in this punk cover. Listening to punk might take some of us back to our adolescent years, but this modern-day take on the genre is undeniably 2021.
Brigitte Laverne - “Si Veo a Tu Mamá”
Brigitte Laverne is a one-woman soul and synth-pop musical project with an ‘80s flair that’ll quickly hook you in. Based in Barcelona, Spain, the singer released a 2020 cover of “Si Veo A Tu Mamá,” which has now gained over 700,000 streams on Spotify. But more importantly, it appears that El Conejo Malo is supposedly a fan himself. The heavyweight rapper released an Apple Music playlist last year that included artists who inspired his latest album, one of which being the up-and-coming Spanish pop artist. This ‘80s inspired synth track has the same tongue-in-cheek humor as the original Bad Bunny song before it loops in some killer electric guitar that elevates this song into a bonafide banger. The strings ultimately make up the pulsing beat of the cover as the track continuously picks up speed with its drumbeat and vocal ad-libs. It’s hard not to headbang along to this dancey rendition that feels like a nice balance between sugary pop and alternative rock n’ roll.
The Parrots - “Soy Peor”
The Parrots are the rock n’ roll duo from Madrid who are elevating garage rock with electronic beats, touches of synth, and psychedelic influences. After making their 2016 debut with their album Los Niños Sin Miedo, the band went on to release a handful of singles, including this year’s “Maldito,” which features Spanish rap sensation C. Tangana. However, their most-streamed single to date is still their 2018 cover of Bad Bunny’s breakthrough single “Soy Peor,” with over 1.7 million streams. The cover gives the reggaeton track an interesting surf rock and grunge feel. The background’s bongo beat and electric guitar set the tone for this gritty number, with the subtle sound of Spanish castañuelas bringing a nice touch. The Parrots do a great job at bringing tons of energy and backbone to one of Bad Bunny’s slower singles.
Closed Tear - “Solo de Mi”
Sometimes some haunting vocals are enough to create an entire vibe—or at least that’s the case for Closed Tear’s hypnotic cover of “Solo de Mi.” After coming out with two EPs and a debut album between 2019 and 2020, the LA-based musician released his latest record NADA ES PARA SIEMPRE this year. One of the miscellaneous projects released between his various bodies of work includes this soft rock ballad, which dates back to 2019. The cover features layered vocal harmonies and an icy synth that dominates the short track. The song’s strumming electric guitar also has us feeling a certain kind of way, with the whole production being reminiscent of a 1980s coming of age movie. In other words, we feel like those kids slow dancing alone at the school dance while listening to this Bad Bunny cover.
Los Rivera Destino - “Te Boté”
Puerto Rico’s Los Rivera Destino started off their musical career as a satirical parody band, but their cover of “Te Boté” unironically catapulted them to viral status on the internet. The trio is made up of friends Carlos Figueroa, Fernando Terrazo, and Antonio Sanchez, who started a comedic variety show on YouTube to make light of sociopolitical issues in Puerto Rico. But this 2018 cover steered their comedy careers in a very unexpected direction. The bolero remix of this Ozuna track is a slowed-down and more personal experience. The acoustic guitars and bongo beats make it easier to listen to the track’s vindictive lyrics, but we argue that it hits different here. The Puerto Rican group’s rendition feels a bit more emotional and vulnerable as the frontman calmly reminds his ex that she’s out of the picture. This isn’t the scathing reggaeton track that we’ve shouted in the car, but rather a beautiful bolero song that smooths over any past grudges.
Las Alas - “La Canción”
Las Alas is a bit of an enigma on Spotify, with no links to social media accounts or clear information on whether it’s a vocal duo or solo artist. But a healthy amount of anonymity hasn’t stopped their popular cover of Karol G’s “Tusa” from reaching 1.6 million streams on the music platform. Their second most popular cover is an acoustic spin on Bad Bunny’s “La Canción,” sung with light and airy vocals. The track is full of crisp harmonies and slow chord progressions, making it perfect for early morning coffee runs, rainy day vibes, and long car rides alone when you’re contemplating life.
FrioLento - “No Me Conoce”
Another post-punk cover by Chilean group FrioLento, this track is almost unrecognizable in its first few seconds. That is until you hear the echoing bassline that plays to the beat of the Jhay Cortez-J Balvin-Bad Bunny hit. We’re still fans of the original track that came out over two years ago, but this 2021 rendition ticks some interesting boxes, too. The FrioLento cover doesn’t stray too far away from its defining bassline, but it still packs a moody punch. The final result is a cool, rolling beat with simple chord progressions and steady drums that glide us through this rock-influenced cover. The band’s use of reverb on the vocals also adds to the overall alt-rock ambiance and trades in the original’s trap beats for something that goes down a bit smoother.