Los Angeles, .- The multicultural duo Wapea, formed by Jovany Barreto and Tat Tong, seeks a place in the music scene of the country with a proposal that fuses Latin and Asian sounds, and aims to be a representative of diversity.
Despite being born in different latitudes and cultures, Barreto and Tong function as two brothers who found in music a family in which they want to include a generation of open borders.
In an interview with Efe, Barreto said that “the diversity of their cultures” instead of being an obstacle has become the main element of inspirations of Wapea.
“We are fusing Asian sounds and instruments with Latinos, such as reggaeton and salsa, all to create something fresh, that reflects the moment the world is living,” Barreto added.
The desire to be a standard-bearer of diversity was born even before the duo came together to make music.
Barreto says that although he was born in the United States, his Cuban roots have been fundamental both in his musical works and in his daily life.
Meanwhile, Tong, a native of Singapore, says he has been strongly influenced by his Chinese roots, including incorporating to his Wapea proposal instruments such as the erhu, a kind of violin that has two strings and is played with a bow.
“I believe that this fusion is transcending the barriers, and that it is confirming that music is universal,” Tong stressed.
The chemistry between these two young people who sing in Spanish, English, Mandarin and “Spanglish” (a combination of English and Spanish) is not new, the duo has been working for more than five years.
Tong and Barreto make up the collective The Swaggernautz, which in recent years have composed and produced more than 60 songs included in the Top 20 of hits for international artists.
Demi Lovato, CNCO, Troye Sivan, CD9, Jorge Blanco, Luo Show, Aitana, Anahí and Elefante, are some of the artists who have worked with the duo.
Among the successes of these two musicians is the version of “Despacito” in Mandarin.
The duo made it possible for Luis Fonsi and the Singaporean musical star, JJ Lin, to come together to perform the song that broke records worldwide in 2017.
That was the first time that Fonsi sang in Mandarin and Lin, in turn, in Spanish.
“It’s the example of the first time of a reggaeton in China, in Singapore, that fascinated the public, and this showed us that we were not on the wrong route, that we could create a mix that would identify us all,” says Tong.
After confirmation, the pair of musicians formed Wapea, an acronym for the question in English: When Are People Evolving Again? (When are people evolving again?).
However, Barreto has a simpler translation: “Go find him.”
The duo is presenting their third single titled “Vacilar”, a theme inspired by the R & B genre and dedicated to women who “defend women’s rights over their bodies,” says Tong.
“Vacilar” was written by Barreto and Tong in collaboration with David Marcus and Danny Murcia, and is sung in “Spanglish”.
“We want to tell people to be yourself, regardless of their nationality or where they come from, stand up and defend their beliefs, their rights,” Barreto added.
The new work, which is already available on digital platforms, is part of their first album that the duo will launch in the second half of the year through Rebeleon Entertainment.
“WAPEA” and “Maldita” were the first singles of the artists, a musical proposals that have already reached more than one million views on YouTube.
For its part, “Vacilar” is already approaching the quarter of a million visits on the duo’s official website on the YouTube platform. (EFEUSA)