James Rhodes, a classical pianist, is facing some backlash after taking it upon himself to question the popularity of reggaeton and, specifically, Bad Bunny. The beloved Latin trap artist has made a big name for himself, even crossing over into English-language audiences without sacrificing his Spanish-language music. The global success does seem to be puzzling Rhodes.
The pianist appears on a screen in a classroom and immediately begins to wax poetic about classical music and its importance to society. He gushes about the music of Chopin, Beethoven, and Bach. As he celebrates classical music, he also takes a swipe at reggaeton and Bad Bunny, almost casually.
”Please explain to me reggaeton and Bad Bunny,” Rhodes says in the video, after questioning reggaeton as a musical genre. “I swear to you, I swear, I’m not saying it is shit, but, literally, I don’t understand its popularity of this type of music. If there is someone who can explain to me, ‘Look, this is why it’s good,’ tell me. I will listen with all of my soul.”
Reggaeton fans are sounding off on social media in response. The video has sparked a discussion defending reggaeton and highlighting its cultural relevance within the Latinx space. First of all, fans want people to know that just because the music isn’t for them doesn’t mean it isn’t valid
Culture is something that exists within a community and will live on with or without the validation of other communities. One fan responded directly to Rhode’s assumption that reggaeton music won’t matter in a couple of decades. We couldn’t agree more.
Here are some other responses from fans of the genre: