While “La Borinqueña” – Puerto Rico’s national anthem – may inspire pride and nostalgia for many isleños, you can miss René Pérez Joglar, aka Residente, with those sentiments. For Univision’s very first U-Lab podcast, Nuria Net spoke to the rapper about his first solo project – a self-titled work featuring a documentary film – and Residente revealed his thoughts on the Puerto Rican anthem.
“We don’t have a good anthem,” he said. “I think our anthem sucks. I know that people are gonna talk shit about what I just said, but it’s true. [It] super sucks. If you listen to all the other national anthems, they’re great. And our anthem is like, talking about Cristobal Colón admiring our beaches, like, so fucking stupid. For me, [it’s] a shame.”
With “Hijos de Cañaveral” – the last and longest song on Residente – he hoped to give Puerto Ricans an alternative to “La Borinqueña.” He explained that he put politics aside and focused on what would unite his community.
“It talks about our history. The second verse is more like the present, a bit, you know, but in a weird, beautiful way, and then, the future and what we should do,” he said. “Musically speaking, it’s like kind of a jibaro song, but it’s not all the way jibaro, of course. And I wrote the hook the same way you write decimas, but I did it like a quartet.”
Listen to the song below and hear the rest of the U-Lab podcast here.