The Benito Antonio Martínez Ocasio Live Music Tour, known as Bad Bunny, will pass through Phoenix at Chase Field next Wednesday.
It’s the late summer concert in the city and its metro area. From kids and teens to adults, many Latinos but many others, the venue for September 28 will be Arizona Diamondbacks.
Downtown Phoenix is about to buzz with fans of the Puerto Rican rapper, whose music has resonated with many. Tickets aren’t cheap, with lowest prices at $280 for upper-level seats as of Friday. But one group of Bad Bunny fans who could easily pay those prices wouldn’t be on the show.
Diamondbacks themselves. They are on the road in Houston when Bad Bunny appears in Phoenix.
This does not mean that the Diamondbacks are completely lost. Bad Bunny’s music is a huge part of Major League Baseball’s soundtrack, from clubs to batsman music, that spans across the game.
“The beats, the rhythm, is like somewhere between dance music, good energy, and good vibes,” said Christian Walker, the Diamondbacks’ first policeman. “There’s just something that makes you want to move and feel the rhythm. I’m a fan. He does a great job with his albums.”
Walker had hoped to go to the Chase Field Show. Observant fans know that Walker uses a wide range of song genres, including Latin and hip-hop, and takes the time to research and translate Bad Bunny’s lyrics until he can make sense of them.
“My Spanish isn’t great, so sometimes it takes a while to understand what the songs are about,” Walker said. I’m kind of disappointed that we’ll be out of town when he’s here.”
From reggaeton to merengue to bachata to house rhythms on his latest album “Un Verano Sin Ti (A Summer Without You), Bad Bunny’s voice and rap are a huge hit worldwide. The album is the first Spanish-language album to spend at least 10 weeks above the Billboard 200 chart.
The record is broadcast over a hundred million times a week.
“All Puerto Ricans love Bad Bunny music,” Island-born Diamondbacks player Emmanuel Rivera said in Spanish before Friday’s game against the San Francisco Giants. “Going to the (Chase Field) show, I wasn’t aware of it. But the thing is, music is contagious and we Latinos just love it. There’s no real way to describe it.”
Bad Bunny has received 10 Latin Grammy Award nominations in seven categories, including Album of the Year, according to a New York Times report, and is now using its giant platform to address political and social issues in Puerto Rico. He recently released a music video for his song “El Apagón” (The Blackout), which is followed by a documentary on land and real estate inequality and highlights the problems with the storm-ravaged island’s power grid.
Many of the league’s big and small players who make it to the home plate, or warm up on the hill to Bad Bunny, are from Latin American nations. Bad Bunny’s appeal extends from Puerto Rico to the Dominican Republic, Venezuela, Mexico, other parts of Latin America and the United States.
“I think he’s one of the most powerful artists in the urban music industry,” Giraldo Perdomo said in Spanish. “He’s very influential.” “It is popular in many countries. Many boys love the rhythm and message in music, which is why so many of them use it.
“Even if we (Latinos) don’t have the same customs and culture, if there is a good win, the players will use it no matter where they come from,” added Perdomo, who is from the Dominican Republic. “I use a Cuban song and I’m not Cuban, but the song has a message that I recognize about the government and the liberation of Cuba.”
MLB realized how bad Bunny was affected by today’s game, and in July invited the artist to the All-Star Game celebrations in Los Angeles.
The company representing Bad Bunny, which has branched out into actual acting and wrestling with the WWE show, did not respond to numerous requests from Republic for an interview with the artist.
“There’s a lot of music he has that anyone can identify with,” Milwaukee Brewers’ Estiori Ruiz said in Spanish when his team was in town to play the Diamondbacks earlier this season. “It’s the words he uses. You can relate to it. Stories of life, stories about people, stories about families and things.”
Ketel Marte is a Diamondbacks player who used Bad Bunny songs to the music of Chase Field walks.
“For Latinos, Bad Bunny music has a feel, a good vibe, and something very positive,” Marti said in Spanish. “There are not many bad words, nothing that can make people think badly of us.”