Latin music artists – even global superstars – don’t get enough credit for the mark they leave behind. So many of our musical stars have broken barriers, and Mexican pop star and actress Thalia is one of them. From constantly evolving her sound to maintaining her place as one of the leading female artists in Latin music, Thalia has the power to change culture – respectfully giving credit where credit is due. Her latest project honors the legends before her and highlights the artists on the rise. “Thalia’s Mixtape: El Soundtrack De Mi Vida” is a three-part docuseries premiering May 2 exclusively on Paramount+ in the US and Canada. It celebrates the music and artists that have influenced Thalia throughout her life and complements her latest album, “Thalia’s Mixtape”, which came out April 28 via Sony Music and features re-recorded versions of classic covers.
The docuseries, which was produced by Thalia and Tommy Mottola, feels like a music history course. Thalia introduces viewers to some of the legendary artists and pioneers of rock en Español that she grew up with, such as Charly Alberti, the drummer of the Argentine rock band Soda Stereo, and singer Roco Pacukote of the Mexican rock group Maldita Vecindad. The docuseries also charts the history of how recorded music evolved from vinyl to streaming, complete with footage of Thalia interviewing the artists.
“This era touched my heart,” Thalia tells POPSUGAR at Sony’s Manhattan offices, wearing a chic 80s-inspired outfit. The 1980s mixtape era greatly influenced the singer’s musical taste. “I was a big fan of recording my melodies and mixtapes with my cassettes and giving them as gifts. It was a part of your heart that you gave away,” she adds. “This is a great project. . . . I’m going to talk exactly about the evolution of music . . . in a visual way that you can process alongside your children.”
While Thalia is an icon and legend to many younger artists, in the docuseries she positions herself as a fan watching her idols who made it to her mixtapes during her teenage and young adult years. The inspiration for the project came to Thalia when she took a long car ride in 2019. On her ride, she says, she started spinning some of her favorite artists’ hits.
“The moment I started listening to those original mixtapes, the playlist, the track list – the movie – came into my head like a download [and] to my heart,” she says. “I saw ‘Thalia’s Mixtape: The Soundtrack of My Life’ and I saw the opportunity to reach out to my idols and tell them, ‘Thank you, because right now I still feel what you made me feel for the first time with that song. And I want to ask how you did that song, what happened in society then? . . . and then sing the songs with them.”
But in typical Thalia fashion, in the third episode she also introduces viewers to emerging Latin American music artists Kenya Os, Bruses, Ben Carillo and León Leiden.
“They’re so excited because they’re also learning everything and understanding the responsibility of doing these songs again,” Thalia says of the emerging artists who took part in the project. “It’s just a big responsibility to share it with their audience with all this care and love.”
The docuseries is also not structured like your typical docuseries. The documentary transitions pretty seamlessly into a music video in the pilot episode featuring the song “Devuélveme a mi Chica” featuring Pachuco. The singer was intentional about making it a truly entertaining viewing experience for all viewers. For Thalia, one of the motives behind the project was using the docuseries to explain to her 11-year-old son how music could live on a cassette tape or on a vinyl record.
But the artist shares that the project was also for her.
“It was so important to me, but it was also important to my teenage heart. I needed that. I love what’s happening in the music industry right now. It’s the best thing that could ever happen for the Latin music industry” , she says. “But I missed this kind of music… I love all the songs I’ve made over the decades. I love that… they thank you.”
Thalia even took it a step further by ensuring that a cassette version of the album was made available for retro music aficionados. However, the process was not easy.
“It was a nightmare for my record company,” she says. “It was a process of figuring out who can make cassettes because it was tricky. Right now it’s not easy. Not everyone makes cassettes.”
But the challenges paid off. The artist says this is one of her most personal and heartfelt projects. As she explains, “In these four years of the process of creating this, I’ve confirmed that when you do things from an honest part of your heart and you talk about it with others, it’s contagious.”
Image source: Enrique Vega
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