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Maluma sees global success — and he's sticking to singing mainly in Spanish

“I don’t have to sing in English to be recognized or feel admired... I’m still here and it’s working,” the Colombian global superstar told TODAY.
Image: Maluma Concert In Valencia
Colombian singer Maluma performs on stage at Estadi Ciutat de Valencia on July 7, 2022 in Valencia, Spain.Fernando Ruiz / Redferns file

Maluma fans know that there’s two sides to the performer, as he’s previously noted with his 2015 sophomore album, “Pretty Boy, Dirty Boy.” But first and foremost, the singer — whose real name is Juan Luis Londoño Arias — is a dreamer.

“I’m a dreamer. I never want to stop dreaming. I never want to stop making art,” the 28-year-old Colombian singer told TODAY while promoting his Michelob ULTRA Pure Gold x Maluma can.

Performing since he was in his teens, Maluma first made waves after “Pretty Boy, Dirty Boy” earned him his first No. 1 on the Billboard Top Latin Albums chart when he was 21. From there, he gained recognition with his superstar collaborations with the likes of Shakira, Madonna and The Weeknd, among others.

This year, the Latin Grammy winner made his feature film debut, co-starring opposite Jennifer Lopez in “Marry Me.” Add his Versace campaign, Macy’s clothing line and participation in the newly-announced Latin music festival Rumbazo, and Maluma is unstoppable.

“For me, all these projects, they are like art. Having these kinds of experiences with Michelob, going to Rumbazo, doing my own fragrance and doing my own clothing line, it’s all about art,” he sais. “I don’t think I’m going to stop. I just want to keep growing.”

Since the start of his career, the Medellín native made a pact with himself that he would “change the face” of his culture. For him, it all started with singing in his native Spanish language. While Maluma has occasionally sung in English, he plans to stick to Spanish-language lyrics.

“I don’t have to sing in English to be recognized or feel admired from people from the States or around the world. I’m going to tell my story,” he said. “And that story is going to be in Spanish. I’m still here and it’s working.”

He’s also taking his culture “to another level” with his limited-edition Michelob ULTRA Pure Gold can that features his face in vibrant colors and an accompanying sweepstakes.

Maluma will continue to “bring the heat” by “just being myself,” he told TODAY. With many projects still in the works, he’s also looking to take a break and spend time with his family and friends. 

“It’s not that I want it, it’s that I need it,” he said with a laugh. “I have a couple of projects, but I want to go back to Medellín. I miss my family like crazy, I miss my animals … It’s OK to be working. It’s OK to to feel like you want to conquer the world. That’s beautiful, but there is another important side of it. You need to rest to (be able to) conquer.”

“I want to keep building my companies. I want to keep dreaming and keep having amazing moments with my career,” he stated. “It’s just the beginning. The most amazing things are about to come.”

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