Stills from the record-breaking “Despacito” video

Pasito a pasito: Daddy Yankee and Luis Fonsi | Backstory

The Caribbean musical hit of 2017? That’s “Despacito”, the steamy song by Puerto Ricans Luis Fonsi and Daddy Yankee, which has been breaking records all year. Nazma Muller investigates its runaway success, and explains why “Despacito” has roused controversy for more than its lyrics.

Chronology

Playlist (November/December 2017) | Music Reviews

This month’s listening picks.

Pan Roots Culture

Playlist (September/October 2017) | Music Reviews

This month’s listening picks.

Shades of Life

Playlist (July/August 2017) | Music Reviews

This month’s listening picks.

Jazz musician Etienne Charles. Photo by Maria Nunes

Etienne Charles: a head for jazz and a creole soul | Closeup

From his jaunty fedora to his bespoke suits, Trinidadian Etienne Charles looks like a jazzman — and he has the musical chops to back it up. A phenomenal talent with the trumpet, he’s also earned a reputation as a composer with a gift for merging traditional Caribbean genres with jazz, Nigel Campbell reports.

R.E.D

Playlist (May/June 2017) | Music Reviews

This month’s listening picks.

Illustration by Rohan Mitchell

Harry Belafonte: calypso with a conscience

A beloved musical icon since the 1950s, Harry Belafonte has an equally long reputation as a political activist. And the parallel themes of his public life, entertainment and activism, both have their roots in Belafonte’s childhood in Jamaica. James Ferguson finds out more.

Bright Eyes

Caribbean Playlist (March/April 2017) | Music Reviews

This month’s listening picks.

Double Take

Caribbean Playlist (January/February 2017) | Music Reviews

This month’s listening picks.

Leroy Sibbles. Photo by David Corio/Redferns/Getty Images

Leroy Sibbles: “You need conscious lyrics”

Leroy Sibbles of the Heptones on growing up in Trench Town, the golden days of Jamaica’s Studio One, and what’s missing from today’s music — as told to Garry Steckles.