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Kali Uchis appeals to empathy: "Recovering me will take as long as it takes"


The Colombian-American singer, internationally known for her single 'Telepathy,' speaks briefly in Bogotá about mental health and divided identity for Latino migrants like her

The Estéreo Picnic (FEP) music festival, which ended this Sunday on the outskirts of Bogotá, offered Colombians more than 50 hours of concerts and, like every year, some tension due to the artists who would not arrive.

In 2022, the sad news for the attendees was the sudden death of drummer Taylor Hawkins, from the Foo Fighters group, who died in his hotel a few hours before performing.

A month earlier, fans learned that the long-awaited group Blink 182 would not arrive this year, due to an injury to the drummer's left hand.

For a private festival whose admission can cost almost the same as minimum wage, attendees police no-shows weight by weight.

The harshest criticism for considering canceling a concert came Saturday against Colombian-American singer Kali Uchis,


When it became known one day before her presentation that she was canceling it to take care of her physical and mental health, given the fury and anxiety of the fans, the queen of telepathy had to go out and ask for some empathy.

After a wave of criticism on social media, she changed her mind: She would show up, she said, but she would cancel all her other commitments except the concert.

Because first, she insisted, she was getting over it emotionally.

"I will do my show with the greatest dedication despite feeling the way I feel," he wrote on his Instagram account.

"So please, I hope you can understand that despite taking the courage to stand in front of a stage for you, you can also have empathy," she added.

The singer did not specify what is going on emotionally in her life, but she asked fans to understand the following: this would take time to heal, and it would take "as long as it takes."

Kali Uchis, 28, is a singer from a Pereiran family who has lived almost all her life in the United States, and is part of a generation of Latino singers whose identity is divided between their family roots and the place where they grew up.

Many people know that Lido Pimienta is Colombian, but forget her identity as a Canadian.

Many identify the extremely famous rapper Cardi B as American, but forget that she is also Dominican and from Trinidad.

As happens to other migrant artists whose identity is divided, Kali Uchis is negatively charged a nationality according to what she says or does, and positively if she makes her followers happy.

"I am Colombian, from Pereira, but I never felt very settled here or in the United States," she told the audience before the stage.

In the few hours that her concert seemed cancelled, several fan darts went precisely to question her Latin American loyalty.

"You don't turn your back on your country," said one.

"To be honest, if it were a gringo festival it wouldn't be like that...", added another.

"As always doing ugly to Colombia," added another person.

"Later, don't ask why one gets annoyed with those "artists" who boast of being Colombian and refuse to perform at a festival or offer a PAID concert in their own country," concluded another.

When it became known that he was finally going to appear at the FEP, the type of comments immediately changed.

“As a good pereirana”,

said another user on social networks with a relief emoji.

"Today I feel her love," Kali Uchis finally said in the emotional concert that she performed at times with a broken voice.

"Colombia is in my art, in my style, my aesthetics," Kali Uchis told this newspaper in 2018. A figure like her, binational, easily the object of attacks on both sides because, like many children of migrants in the United States, there it is seen as too Latina and in Latin America as too North American.

"I didn't know she was Colombian," said one of the FEP attendees.

Most of her songs are performed in English, and she has performed with Tyler, the Creator, Gorillaz and Snoop Dogg;

but she also has them with the paisas Juanes or the reggaeton player Reykon, and the title of her third album is inspired by a novel by Gabriel García Márquez: Without

Fear (Del Amor y Otros Demonios).

Kali Uchis is an artist who hardly has a genre: she is not 100% reggaeton, nor pop, nor blues, but it could be said that her musical identity brings something from everyone.

Just as her national identity moves between North and South America, she also plays with


without fear of being ostracized among South American or English-speaking listeners.

Kali Uchis, who started making her songs on the computer when no producer would receive her in his studio, and who lived from house to house with friends before becoming famous and after her parents took her out of the house, is not afraid to talk about her health either. mental as he did hours before appearing at the FEP.

"I just want to feel good," he says in one of the songs of

Sin Miedo

in which she talks about how tormented she is and how difficult it is to find a state of mind to "live in peace."

“Is there a world where I don't always have to fight?” she asks herself in the same song.

In 2020, when she wanted to send a message of support to one of her colleagues, Uchis said on her Twitter account that “many women artists must be allowed to be complex, imperfect.

A lot of us struggle with our mental health, have been through trauma, and just trying to do the best we can."

She is discreet about her trauma, although she mentions in several interviews that she has had to overcome various emotional wounds alone in recent years.

The only thing she asks of the audience as she heals all of her wounds, at least, is some empathy.

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Source: elparis

All news articles on 2023-03-27

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