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Colombian singer Juanes sells big

October 25, 2007 | 10:55 pm

Juanes Superstar Juanes' new CD, "La Vida Es un Ratico" (Life Is Just a Moment) was a hit before it went on sale this week.

Universal Music said it had sold more than 6 million digital songs, from legal Internet vendors and cellphone downloads, before the CD’s official release Tuesday, reports La Semana, citing an Associated Press story from New York.

Juanes, asked about translating his songs into English, replied, "I can play my guitar in English, but my songs will always be in Spanish."

Colombia has long been an incubator of original musical styles, notably cumbia and the accordion-accented vallenato, from the Caribbean Coast, with its large Afro-Colombian population.

Currently, the genre sometimes  known as tropi-pop — a fusion of traditional Colombian sounds like vallenato with rock and electronic music — is the rage in clubs and on the airwaves. A new generation of singers, such as Mauricio y Palodeagua, Bonka, Fanny Lu and Latin Grammy-winner Fonseca, are drawing fans well beyond Colombia’s borders.

Posted by Patrick J. McDonnell in Bogotá

Photo: Juanes promotes the release of "La Vida Es un Ratico" Oct. 22 in New York
Credit: Brad Barket/Getty Images