World Music Wednesday: Jorge Drexler
World Music Wednesday is a new weekly segment on The North 103.3 FM. Every Wednesday at 4pm on Northland Afternoon, we will feature a brand new release or a significantly important past work from our vast library of music from around the world.
Support for World Music Wednesday comes from Simply Ballroom in Duluth's Craft District.
This week's World Music Artist Spotlight is Jorge Drexler.
Jorge Drexler is a Uruguayan musician who, as the son of two doctors, initially followed in his parents’ footsteps, becoming a doctor himself. Music was an important part of his life since childhood, and he released two albums while still practicing medicine. Eventually Drexler came to realize that he loved music more than medicine; after moving from his home country to Spain in 1995, he began to focus on making music.
In 2005 Drexler became the first Uruguayan to win an Academy Award when his song “Al Otro Lado del Rio” from the movie The Motorcycle Diaries won the Oscar for best original song. (Ironically, he wasn't allowed to perform his own song on the broadcast because he wasn’t deemed famous enough, and actor Antonio Banderas did the honors.)
The Madrid-based musician has released 14 studio albums, given a popular Spanish-language TED talk, performed an NPR Tiny Desk concert, and won 13 Latin Grammys. 6 of them were for his most recent album, 2022’s Tinta y Tiempo. Drexler struggled to create in the solitude of pandemic lockdowns. Ultimately he chose to write the record not about the pandemic itself, but about the feeling of re-connecting, projecting into the future to when he could return to experiences he was missing while in isolation. The former doctor finds ways to connect science and poetry in his songs, which on this album is reflected in lyrics that cover big ideas like the origins of love.
We’re highlighting three songs from Drexler’s career:
“Tocarte” from his 2022 release Tinta y Tiempo
“Telefonía” from his 2017 release Salvavidas de Hielo, an album inspired by a trip Drexler took to Mexico
“Al Otro Lado del Río,” his Academy Award-winning song from the soundtrack to The Motorcyle Diaries
Jorge Drexler will appear on Austin City Limits on PBS North on Saturday, November 4th at 10pm.