Reyna Tropical: 2024

Fabi Reyna of Reyna Tropical (photo by Gus Philippas for FUV)
by Kara Manning | 05/13/2024 | 12:00am

Fabi Reyna of Reyna Tropical (photo by Gus Philippas for FUV)

This  FUV Live session marks the premiere of FUV's new podcast, "FUV Live Sessions." We're elevating WFUV's live sessions and interviews with emerging and established artists via a podcast that you can find on Spotify, Apple Podcasts and Amazon Podcasts. New episodes drop every Monday.

With this year's release of Reyna Tropical's debut album, Malegría, Fabi Reyna has stepped into the light following the tragic passing of their musical partner and band co-founder Nectali "Sumohair" Diaz in 2022. Although Malegría is technically Fabi's solo project, Sumo is very present for Fabi on this album, as is their mother, their ancestors, and all of the people they have loved ... and that have loved them. Malegría is a beautiful, bittersweet, emotional passage between chapters in Reyna's life.

Fabi's identity as a guitarist looms large on this album, although they've learned to enjoy singing too; Fabi freely admits that the transition to the front of the stage, as vocalist, wasn't easy for them. As an observer, you'd never know of their initial hesitancy because as Reyna Tropical, Fabi is a charismatic presence. That dynamism extends into their activism too; Reyna is the founder of She Shreds Media (formerly She Shreds magazine), a platform that champions female and gender-nonconforming guitarists and bassists.

For this FUV Live session in Studio A, Fabi is joined by bandmate Antonia Estela Pérez to  an entire set that includes "Suavecito," "Cartagena," and "Conexión Ancestral." And yes, they got everyone dancing in the production studio.

[Recorded: 4/17/24; Engineered and mixed by Jim O'Hara with Erin Merriman and Zack Tomassi; produced by Meghan Offtermatt. Videographers: Nikki Estelami, Therese Burgo, Adithi Vimalanathan, Alena Godas, Olivia Iannaccone, and Lilja Cormack.]

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