Rhapsody Radar 2012 #3: Juan Magán
Calling Juan Magán the Spanish Pitbull is an oversimplification. But it's also a pretty accurate (not to mention favorable) comparison. Plus, it's a relationship Magán himself readily claims. The Barcelona-based DJ/producer burst onto the Latin scene this year with the sunny, hip-shaking, cumbia-cut single "Bailando Por El Mundo," featuring (who else?) Mr. Worldwide. But don't mistake MagÃ¡n for a newbie. He's already made a name for himself in global party circuits for his remixing skills (sought after by Nelly Furtado and Don Omar, among others) and, especially, his floor-shaking, house-hued DJ sets. Along the way, he also released a sporadic but respectable clutch of singles, on his own and as half the duo Magán and Rodriguez (whose oeuvre includes an album and the hits "Suck My" and "Bora Bora").
With the recent release of his proper solo debut, however, Magán is poised to deliver the promise of his big hit. The aptly titled The King of Dance manages to craft a near-seamless mix of rippling, rolling dance beats -- even as he experiments with a diverse range of styles. Dance-floor-friendly club cumbia abounds, but it shuffles in and out of bits of hip-hop, reggaeton and bachata -- and alongside guests like Dyland & Lenny (whose "Pegate Más" got the Magán remix treatment), El Cata, and, yes, Pitbull. His adroitness with Pit's successful dance-pop stylings may have gotten his foot in the door, but we predict Magán's gonna have every body from Espana to Cuba shaking before long.