In Alba Garcia’s ‘Yo Soy Taíno,’ Puppets Tell the Story of an Abuela & Granddaughter Surviving Hurricane Maria

Seasoned animator and director Alba Garcia was deeply impacted when Hurricane Maria ravaged her homeland of Puerto Rico. The hurricane killed over 3,000 people and left survivors without access to basic necessities and electricity for months. While she now lives in the U.S., Garcia has family who still lives on the island.

The inaction and insensitivity on behalf of the United States government, in the face of such tragedy, pushed her to rethink what she knew about Puerto Rico’s history. She revisited the banishing of indigenous Taíno culture done by colonization. Although she had primarily only worked in stop-motion animation at the time, Garcia ventured into working with puppets when presented with the opportunity to explore the identity of her people in a new format.

With dialogue in Spanish and Taíno, the 13-minute film Yo Soy Taino (I Am Taíno or Dak’toká Taíno) revolves around an encounter between Puerto Rican grandmother Abuela Yaya (voiced by Amneris Morales) and her curious granddaughter Marabelí (Vianez Morales) following Hurricane Maria. Abuela Yaya teaches the young girl words and phrases in the Taíno language. She also offers her a crash course in the ways the United States has deliberately hurt Puerto Rico’s economy and tried to erase their multiracial heritage — a mix of Taíno, Spanish, and African traditions.

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Bad Bunny, Khalid & More To Headline Apple Music’s ‘Up Next Live’ Series: See Full Lineup

Bad BunnyDaniel CaesarKhalidAshley McBryde, King PrincessLewis Capaldi and Jessie Reyez are confirmed to perform at Apple Music’s Up Next Liveseries, the platform confirmed on Monday (July 1). Each artist will perform for fans in one city, for one night only. 

Up Next Live will kick off on July 9 with Puerto Rican trap singer Bad Bunny at Apple Piazza Liberty in Milan and will wrap up on August 23 with Khalid’s performance at Apple Carnegie Library in Washington, D.C. The full schedule is listed below.

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TRAILER: Princess Nokia Makes Her Film Debut in Romantic, Coming-of-Age Film ‘Angelfish’

Nuyorican rapper Princess Nokia is making her feature film debut, but don’t expect her rapping moniker to appear anywhere in the credits for upcoming film Angelfish. For her first big screen outing, she’ll go by Destiny Frasqueri.

The change in credit speaks to the way Frasqueri wants audiences to see her acting work as removed from her more assertive and imposing music persona. There’s a softness to the Peter Lee-directed romantic coming-of-age film where she plays Eva – a young Puerto Rican woman who’s torn between her responsibilities to her family and her dreams, and Brendan (Jimi Stanton), an Irish-American man dealing with family problems of his own.

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Puerto Rican Hitmaker Jhay Cortez Doesn’t Need American Hip-Hop’s Approval

You already know Jhay Cortez. The Puerto Rican singer has been urbano’s secret hitmaking weapon for a minute; he’s credited as a writer on Billboard-charting singles like Anuel AA’s “Amanece,” Natti Natasha and Ozuna‘s “Criminal,” and Bad Bunny’s “RLNDT,” to name but a few. At least two of the biggest bilingual singles of the past couple years—Cardi B‘s “I Like It” and the Benny Blanco and Tainy’s team-up “I Can’t Get Enough”—benefitted from his work behind the scenes. And he’s been as essential to the stateside ascent of J Balvin as has the Colombian reggaetonero’s longtime producer Sky El Rompiendo. But in his mind, he’s still a kid in the studio, hungry for his own time to rock the mic.

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J Balvin And Bad Bunny Surprise Us With, And On, ‘Oasis’

In the world of English-language music, chances are that “new Oasis” means something very different to you than it does to the Spanish-language Internet. When the possibility of a joint album between two of the biggest names in urbano, J Balvin, the Colombian global domineer of 2017’s “Mi Gente” and longtime reggaetonero, and Bad Bunny, the 25-year-old face of Puerto Rican trap, became a reality back in September, it was a big deal.

Balvin confirmed to radio host Ebro Darden, who casually suggested a potential joint album, that he’d title the whole of their six or seven unreleased songs together Oasis — a word written the same in English and Spanish. Before long, Balvin and Bad Bunny were name-dropping Oasis on the outro to Jhay Cortez’s “No Me Conoce” remix. Cryptic Twitter teases ensued for months, until Oasis finally dropped today.

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Jennifer Lopez’s Career Is a Portrait of Her Puerto Rican Pride

As recognizable as J.Lo‘s become, the mixed reactions to her Motown tribute at the 2019 Grammys underscored the fact that not everyone’s in complete agreement about her racial identity—and the fact that it’s technically none of their business did nothing to stem the tide of Tweets and Reddit threads debating the issue.

That Jennifer Lopez is not a Black woman is a fact nothing (save for a surprising 23andMe result) could call into question. But whether she’s white is another matter entirely.

So, what is Jennifer Lopez’s race? Any attempt to answer that question has to start with the difference between “race” and “ethnicity.”

Jennifer Lopez was born and raised in the Castle Hill section of the Bronx, a borough of New York City. Her family came to New York from Ponce, Puerto Rico’s largest city after San Juan. Puerto Rico is an unincorporated U.S. territory.

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“She’s Gotta Have It” Cast Celebrate Puerto Rico

Spike Lee’s movie “She’s Gotta Have It” has been rebooted! It is now a show on Netflix with leading Latino talent including rapper Fat Joe and Hamilton actor Anthony Ramos.

Ramos who plays Mars Blackmon and Fat Joe joined show writer Lemon Anderson to share a meal and swap stories on all things Puerto Rico and Puerto Rican. In true New Yorker style the trio held nothing back during their conversation. They reminisced on their Puerto Rican roots, bringing old and new actors together, and their experience filming on the island. Above all, it was a celebration and love fest for their ancestral home of Puerto Rico.

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Luna Lauren Velez crosses to the opposite side of the law in ‘Shaft’

Competing against larger-than-life superheroes in “Dark Phoenix,” a giant sea monster in “Godzilla” and exciting alien species in “Men in Black: International“, Puerto Rican actress Luna Lauren Velez says that she crossed over to the other side of the law in “Shaft” because she believes that the black action reboot will win over new fans this box office weekend.

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