Reggaeton–the scorching mix of rap, reggae, dancehall, salsa and bomba–is so infectious that since its introduction in the ’90s, it has taken the country by storm. Most closely associated with Puerto Rico and Jamaica but with a talent-base spread throughout the Latino community, the growing music form has put a whole cast of music stars on the map: Daddy Yankee, Tego Calderon and Noriega, to name a few.
The genre will likely find more followers when R&B star Omarion Grandberry, who made his feature film debut opposite his older half-brother Marques Houston in 2004’s You Got Served , brings reggaeton to the big screen in Feel the Noise. Produced by Jennifer Lopez, Feel the Noise infuses the scenes with a vibrancy rarely captured in music movies. The story keeps it real, reminding us that growing up is hard–and chasing a dream might be even harder.
Hollywood.com caught up with the innovative, ever-rising music star who’s tackling a new beat.
Hollywood.com: How does your character discover reggaeton?
Omarion Grandberry: My character has ambitions of becoming a rap star and is faced with adversity throughout the course of the film. In the opening scene, he ends up in jail and is then shipped off to Puerto Rico to where his father is–[someone] who he does not even know. He’s dealing with a lot of issues inside of him, but on the outside the music follows him and he finds this new sound, which is reggaeton.
HW: What was it like shooting in Puerto Rico?
OG: We shot in Puerto Rico for two months–that was the best part for me. I can’t say I was a huge reggaeton fan or understood the Puerto Rican culture, but when I went there I was like, “”Oh man!”” and really experienced something. New York Post