Artist Spotlight: Mala Rodriguez

Good Evening and welcome to another in the occasional series “Artist spotlights on Female Spanish language rappers who’ve recorded versions of ‘Eres Para Mi’ with Julieta Venegas. (I feel this could run and run)

Raised in Seville, she became involved in the city’s rap scene in the late 90s , recording tracks with SFDK, La Gota Que Colma and several others.
Her first solo record ‘ A Jierro’ was released in 1999.

It was a simple, Latin American tinged track that attracted the attention of major labels and led to her signing with Universal in 2000. In that year she released her debut álbum Lujo Iberico which subsequently went gold.
Her second álbum Alevosia contained more of a specifically Spanish flavour, incorporating more of her flamenco style singing. It courted controversy when the video for La Niña was banned by Spanish TV for it’s depiction of a primary school aged drug dealer.

‘La Mala’ continued to collaborate with a veritable ‘who’s who’ of Latin hip hop, including Calle 13, Vico C and Mayuscula. She also experimented with various styles and artists from other genres such as the opening vid or my personal favourite, El Anden with Bajofondo Tango Club

Her third and fourth studio albums Malarismo and Dirty Bailarina continued her mixture of intelligent, socially aware songs like Por La Noche and the more try hard braggadocio tracks like No Pidas Perdon which I’m linking to only in ‘ How did this get made?’ way. It contains a KISS basque , posturing with oversized guns and sports cars and manages to look like it was directed by a thirteen year old. Good tune though.

Her newest álbum Bruja had a lead single ’33’ that showed off the try too hard aspects. Clad in a tight gym kit and pigtails , while surrounded by Gap models it’s a Little on-the-nose bragging wise, yet it IS a tremendous vocal performance. Growling and spitting invective, she absolutely nails her target. Whether the target is worthwhile compared to a song like Esclavos (Slaves) is a different matter.