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20 Of America’s Got Talent Latino Contestants That We Love

The show that brings us laughter, tears, and “what the heck was that” reactions is back. In the first episode of the 13th season of America’s Got Talent, judge Howie Mandel captures the essence of it all. “The beauty of this show is that people come from all over the world to show us things we’ve never seen before.”

1. The Dominican Republic Is In The House

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Dance group Da Republik, a name definitely inspired by the group’s hometown, the Dominican Republic, rocked the stage with their Hip Hop moves. The group is well known back home but being on this show gives them an opportunity at reaching what they always wanted, the American Dream. Larybel Castillo, one of the first founders of Da Republik, expressed her determination. “It doesn’t matter where you come from, if you just love what you do, you can make it.”

2. Ditch The Double Dutch

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If you thought double dutch was intense, you definitely have to follow Vivien Vajada and watch her rock the stage in ways unimaginable. The judges were beyond impressed with her ability to perform dance moves and even flips all while jumping rope, talk about multitasking.

3. Dreams Can Come True

You know you are in for a show when someone decides to cover a Whitney Houston song. Glennis Grace takes the stage covering “Run To You” in hopes of making her dreams come true. “Ever since I was a little kid I knew I was made to sing for lots and lots of people.” She hits every note and amazes the audience and judges.

4. Electric Violinist Rocks The Stage

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Brian King Joseph’s energy was felt from the moment he walked onto stage. His electric violin cover to Major Lazer’s hit, “Lean On,” was amazing, especially considering that Brian has a rare nerve disease that left him with no feeling in his hands or feet. He had the judges dancing the whole performance.

5. Anything You Can Do They Can Do Better

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Celina, 66, and Filiberto, 70, prove that age really ain’t nothing but a number. This adorable couple represents the typical Cuban grandparents but with a bit more sazón. As soon as Jason Derulo’s “Talk Dirty” played, Filiberto dropped it down low as Celina whipped her hips around. Ay,Dios mío! (please read in heavy Cuban accent.) crowd went wild.

6. Age Really Ain’t Nothing But A Number

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Quin and Misha take the stage and we are blown away to find that Quin is 71 years old; her moves speak otherwise. Their performance is graceful and their story is inspirational. “You don’t have an expiration date”, says Heidi Klum. Quin, like Celina, proves that age ain’t nothing but a number.

7. Two Brave Brothers Take The Stage

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Do you remember those Saturday afternoons spent at the laundromat where you couldn’t help but admire the laundry in the washer spinning so beautifully? This is what the beautiful Fratelli Rossi brothers, Ricardo and Alejandro, looked like during their acrobatic performance, but more majestic of course.They made a mistake during their performance causing one of the brothers to fall down. Would this fall jeopardize their chances? They quickly got up and asked for the music to start once again. Their bravery was admirable.

8. It’s Safe To Stay On Edge

This time we’re not juggling human bodies but instead playing catch with them. Zurcaroh, lead by Brazilian choreographer Peterson da Cruz Hora, is an acrobatic and Gymnastic focused group that tells a unique story. They are not professionals and accept everyone, regardless of skill level. Tyra Banks cant hold her joy back, “I am collecting my breathe, I need some oxygen right now…this is so crazy that you know what I have to do!” Tyra hits the golden buzzer and joy spreads all over the room.

9. A Force To Be Reckoned With

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Brody Ray decided to cover Jorja Smith’s “Stand In The Light” to highlight the struggles he faced being transgender. His performance was powerful, earning him a standing ovation. Simon reminded him that he was inspirational, “I think it’s important that you start singing your own material because I think you can be a force to be reckoned with.”

10. Quick Change Act With A Little Extra Sazón

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Sixto and Lucia took the stage and added their own twist to a Quick Change performance. They showed off their flowcito as they danced and changed outfits to Jennifer Lopez’s “Let’s Get Loud.” At first the judges were iffy about a Quick Change performance but they thought it was fantastic and slick. Their unique performance earned them a standing ovation and a green light to the next round.

11. As Flexible As Can Be

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Troy Jane’s Contortionist performance was freaky and spine-chilling in all the right ways. He twisted his body in ways one would never believe to be possible. He eventually made his way towards the judges and came face to face with Simon and freaked him out. Tory’s personality was very corky and his performance was very entertaining and different; the judges loved him.

12. Spreading Hope One Song At A Time

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Singing was taken to a whole new level when Voices of Hope Children’s Choir took the stage. If they were to win the million-dollar prize they would put it into their program to reach more people with music. Mel B recognizes their uniqueness as a group, “We have amazing singers but we don’t have a choir like you guys.”

13. Nothing Can Stop This Power Couple

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Duo Transcend is so much more than a power couple. They are trapeze performers with a unique story. Tyce, Mary’s husband, has an eye problem that resulted in poor eyesight. They rely on feelings and the strong connection they have with one another to keep them going. Amazing!

14. You Go Girl

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Annaliese Nock is tired of living in the shadow of her father, a well-known daredevil, so she takes the next step to make a name for herself. She is a daredevil who performs “The Exploding Coffin”, which goes just as it sounds. Howie Mandel applauds her, “Now that’s girl power.”

15. Magic Or Comedy?

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Lioz Shem takes the stage and swears that he can moves objects with his mind. When he starts playing with a measuring tape we know that this is not magic but comedy. Simon doesn’t know what to say but when he finds the words, “when it started I thought it was really stupid but then I thought no this was actually really funny.” Simon removes his x sending Lioz on his way to the next round.

16. Rapping Against Gun Violence

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Flau Jae lost her father to gun violence and uses her experience to fuel her dreams. She takes the stage and her pain is painted perfectly as she raps about gun violence. Simon doesn’t hold back, “we are witnessing the start of somebody’s career longtime.” She is a natural.

17. Cuteness Overload

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Sophie Fatu takes the stage to cover a classic, Frank Sinatra’s My Way. From the moment she steps on stage everyone falls in love with her; she is adorable. The judges want to see more of her so they, of course, all say yes. Simon is amazed and might have some other plans up his sleeve, “I want you to marry my son.”

18. Golden Heart And A Golden Buzzer

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Michael Ketterer steals our heart from the moment he steps on stage. He is a father to 6 children who came out of foster care, “When you’re surviving you can’t dream.” He wants to show them that nothing is impossible. The only thing bigger than voice is his heart, he goes home with the Golden Buzzer.

19. Don’t Let Anyone Crush Your Dreams

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Christina Wells takes a stand against a past to let down where her dreams as a singer were crushed because of her weight and size. She shares some words of wisdom with the world, “Nothing should prevent you from making your dreams come true.” Her performance speaks for itself and without hesitation; the judges pass her to the next round.

20. Yup, She Did That!

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Amanda Mena was raised in the Dominican Republic and moved to Boston, Massachusetts where she was bullied for not knowing English. She grew obsessed with music because it got her through everything. She sang her heart out to “Natural Women” by Aretha Franklin. Judge Mel B leans over “This is what I’m gonna say to all those bullies.” BAM! She hits the Golden Buzzer.


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Video Dug Up From Cardi B’s Past Shows Her Saying She Used To Drug And Rob Men

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Video Dug Up From Cardi B’s Past Shows Her Saying She Used To Drug And Rob Men

Stay grateful you did not grow up in the era of Snapchat/ Instagram/ Facebook kids because you can delete but your recorded actions can still come back to bite. Cardi B knows the story. While the Afro-Latina queen of Trap isn’ making any apologies, the latest video to be dug up from her past is requiring her to give some answers.

Video of the singer, recalling a time in her life in which she felt forced to drug and rob men while seducing them has resurfaced.

Over the weekend, video of the “Money” rapper recalling how she used to drug and rob men resurfaced.

The video, which was recorded during an Instagram live broadcast, sees Cardi as she goes on a tearful verbal tirade about her past. This after, someone apparently questioned her success and accused her of not “putting in no fucking work.”

“I had to go ‘oh yeah, you wanna fuck me? Yeah yeah yeah let’s go to this hotel.’ And then I’d drug [expletivie] up and I’d rob them. That’s what I used to do.”

Users online were quick to comment.

“The fact that cardi b admitted to drugging and robbing men she would take back to a hotel for sex blows my mind,” wrote Twitter user @itsangelaa. “That’s not ‘keeping it real.’ that’s a crime.”

“I wonder what woulda happened if it were the other way round,” @BTSisthecauseo5 commented.

At the onset of the backlash, the rapper seemed to take the comments rather lightly.

The following day she also tweeted “IM THAT BITCH THEY LOVE TO HATE, IM THAT BITCH THEY HATE TO LOVE and I love it.”

On Tuesday, however, after users on Instagram and Twitter continued to simmer, she was forced to issue comment.

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In a post to her Instagram, the rapper responded to the comments about the video by saying: “I’m a part of a hip hop culture where you can talk about where you come from talk about the wrong things you had to do to get where you are.”


Read:After Two Parkland Students Commit Suicide, Community Unites To Share Mental Health Resources

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Leslie Grace And Super Junior’s “Lo Siento” Is The Hit All Latinx K-Pop Fans Have Been Waiting For

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Leslie Grace And Super Junior’s “Lo Siento” Is The Hit All Latinx K-Pop Fans Have Been Waiting For

The year 2017 marks a time of major multilingual and multicultural musical collaborations. With Luis Fonsi’s remix of “Despacito,” featuring Daddy Yankee and Justin Bieber, climbing to the top of Billboard’s Hot 100 chart for 16 weeks, and J Balvin and Willy William’s remix for “Mi Gente,” featuring Beyoncé, making it to the No. 3 spot, the western music market is opening up to music in Spanish. But these aren’t the only collaborations bridging different cultures and genres. In the era of globalization, K-pop, short for Korean pop music, is an international phenomenon, and the genre is beginning to meld its addictive melodies with urban Latin pop. Evidence: K-pop boy band Super Junior’s recent collaboration with Leslie Grace.

Debuting in 2005, the fellas of Super Junior are the kings of Hallyu — the Korean wave. At their height, 15 men donned the Super Junior title, but, due to departures, mandatory military service and other issues, only Siwon, Donghae, Eunhyuk, Shindong, Yesung, Heechul and Leeteuk are currently active. As a group, the men have led a revolution in the industry, spurring forward electro-pop and R&B-influenced dance tracks.

(Courtesy of Leslie Grace)

And among K-pop, they also have one of the strongest fan bases in Latin America. The group has long captivated these audiences with hits like “Sorry Sorry,” “Mr. Simple” and “Mamacita,” and Super Junior has made sure to visit their Latin American E.L.F — what they call their fans — on three separate tours since 2013, holding arena shows in Mexico, Argentina, Chile and Peru. It must be noted that the group has yet to hold a single solo show in the U.S.

For many years, Super Junior and SM Entertainment, their label, had seen the excitement from their supporters in Latin America and wanted to show their gratitude by releasing a song partly sung in Spanish. In March, the group dropped “Lo Siento,” a tune about finding romance on the dance floor, featuring Dominican-American singer Leslie Grace and the Latino production duo Play-N-Skillz as part of the extended version of their eighth album, Replay.  

“The song with Super Junior and Play-N-Skillz came out of nowhere. None of us really knew each other,” Leslie Grace, who was recommended to the K-pop group by the Argentine-Venezuelan sibling duo Play-N-Skillz, told FIERCE. “The beauty of it was [having the opportunity of] discovering something that’s been happening hugely in its own right in a different side of the world, and discovering it for the first time and saying, ‘Man, I wanna be a part of that. I don’t know anything about it up until this point, but I really want to be a part of that.’”

While it’s commonplace for K-pop groups to release records in Japanese or Mandarin in order to cater to Asian music markets, or English one-offs for international fans, no act had ventured into singing in Spanish or acknowledged their Latin American fans with a song quite like Super Junior.

“Lo Siento” is a true K-pop and urban Latin-pop mashup. It plays up the typical Spanish guitar and blends a familiar Latin flair with the energy and the mix of pop, dance and hip-hop that K-pop is known for. The music video, shot in South Korea, even features the “Díganle” singer dancing along with the guys of Super Junior.

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The trilingual track debuted at No. 13 on Billboard’s Latin digital sales chart, the first K-pop entry ever. A bit over two weeks after the music video dropped, “Lo Siento” surpassed 20 million views, which was three times more than what their last Korean single, “Black Suit,” accumulated.

While “Lo Siento” isn’t the first time K-pop artists have teamed up with Latin ones nor used Latin genres in their music, it is the first instance that we can actually call a real collaboration. In 2016, for instance, Ricky Martin released a version of his hit “Vente Pa’ Ca” featuring Wendy from K-pop girl group Red Velvet, though she sang in English, and Mexican boy band CD9 released “Get Dumb” with Korean girl group Crayon Pop. In both cases, the artists simply exchanged vocals, put them together and released the song with little fanfare. With “Lo Siento,” however, not only did Leslie fly to Korea to be in the music video, but Super Junior invited her and Play-N-Skillz on their Latin American tour last month.

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Stopping in Buenos Aires, Lima, Santiago and Mexico City, Leslie, Play-N-Skillz and Super Junior played before a total of 55,000 fans. The stars blew up the stage with “Lo Siento,” but both Play-N-Skillz and Leslie also had the chance to perform their own sets during the show.

“It never stops being a surprise, with my most recent released single ‘Duro y Suave,’ for [the crowd] to sing it back to me,” the 23-year-old singer, who came to fame after the release of her bachata remake of The Ronettes’ “Be My Baby” in 2013, told us. “I know it’s Super Junior’s crowd. I know that their fans are so accepting and loving, and I knew that they would be attentive during the show, but you don’t expect everyone to connect, especially a crowd that’s so different, to your music when you’re the special guest.”

Leslie is currently finishing her new album, which she says will drop by the end of the year. She’s also very excited about potentially finishing another leg of the tour with Super Junior. “They’re trying to see if we can do some more shows in Latin America, in Central America, go to the countries we didn’t get to go to in South America, like Colombia [and] Brazil,” she said.

Just like with “Despacito” and “Mi Gente,” “Lo Siento” is bringing together different cultures, languages and even fandoms from various parts of the world that don’t get to interact as much through music in a compact, smooth earworm.

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“For us to come together just fully based off of mutual artistic respect, and for something like this to happen, and now everybody really enjoying it despite the cultural differences, that to me was the biggest takeaway and the biggest blessing to now be a part of Super Junior’s story and them a huge part of mine,” Leslie said.  

During an interview in Times Square, the dominicana gave the boys a quick dance lesson — and it was all caught on camera.

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“Bridging cultures one dance step at a time! First Super Junior with me and ‘Group Dance’ in their land South Korea, and now me with them and ‘Bachata’ in my home NYC,” Grace, 23, captioned a video of the dance sesh she posted on Instagram. “Proud to be your instructor, @eunhyukee44 hahaha! You are officially baptized the best bachatero out of Korea by the princess of bachata — BOOM!”

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Read: Leslie Grace And Super Junior’s “Lo Siento” Is The Hit All Latinx K-Pop Fans Have Been Waiting For

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