Anitta is unapologetically herself on ‘Versions of Me’

On April 12, Anitta — the Brazilian singer currently making a name for herself around the world — dropped her studio album “Versions of Me.” Born in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Anitta experienced a sudden rise to the top when her song “Envolver” made history as the first solo song by a Latin artist to peak at the top spot of the global Spotify chart after going viral on Tik Tok.

15 songs make up this experimental project. True to the album’s title, the collection showcases the different sides of the superstar as she introduces herself to the world. Highly anticipated songs, such as “Versions of Me” accompany previously released songs, such as “Boys Don’t Cry.”

Anitta’s preceding studio album released in 2019, “Kisses,” earned her a respectable amount of mainstream success, from a Latin Grammy nomination for Best Urban Music Album to posting up at No. 4 on Billboard’s Latin Pop Albums chart.

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Anitta kicks off this new set with a bang. The sexy perreo anthem, “Envolver,” exploded on TikTok with over 1 million duets. The highest-charting all-Spanish language solo track by a female in Billboard’s Hot 100 history features the Brazilian princess singing completely in Spanish, which many people incorrectly believe to be the singer’s first language. Even if you fail miserably while attempting to do the Tik Tok challenge, this hit will force you to your feet and make you move your hips.

No. 2 on the list is “Gata” featuring Chencho Corleone, ex member of legendary Puerto Rican reggaeton duo Plan B. The track samples Plan B’s timeless “Guatauba” and transforms it into the new single lady anthem. Using the classic reggaeton bassline, this upbeat song is irresistible and will no doubt be on repeat at your favorite club’s next Latin night.

“Boys Don’t Cry” sends a message to those boys that are “out of touch…when the girls don’t need your love,” Anitta said. This catchy tune shows listeners another side of the singer. True to her album title, there are multiple versions of the artist. This particular track demonstrates the mark of the pop rock band, Panic! At the Disco has left her. Mixing the retro, alternative sound with an electro funk vibe makes the song a perfect recipe for jumping around your room.

“Girl From Rio” is fused with samples from “The Girl from Ipanema” by Astrud Gilberto to transport listeners to the streets of Brazil where Anitta started her musical career. The mashup of trap beats while paying tribute to the 1962 Record of the Year gives a taste of Anitta singing in her native tongue, Portuguese and English. Despite experimenting with different genres and three different languages on this trilingual project, Anitta stays true to her roots and it’s no secret that she is proud to be a girl from Rio.

“Que Rabão” is the ultimate shoutout to Brazil. The track puts Brazilian funk or “baile funk,” the genre of music mainly heard at parties in Rio de Janeiro, on display. Powerful Brazilian artists, such as producer Papatinho, singer-MC Kevin and the late, legendary Mr. Catra make appearances alongside American rapper, YG.

Overall, the album is refreshing. It’s very rare that a female artist is allowed to be completely herself, but Anitta doesn’t have any time for the BS. That’s why people love her. “Versions of Me” exudes a free, feminine and uncensored energy just in time for the summer.

This past weekend, Anitta made history as the first female Brazilian solo artist to perform some of the tracks from “Version of Me” at Coachella. The trailblazer brought “favelas,” houses in Brazilian slums, to the Californian desert for her set. Her first out of three outfits was made of vibrant yellows, blues and greens, reminiscent of the Brazilian flag.

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Sharing the stage with her fellow colleagues, such as Snoop Dogg and Saweetie, Anitta showed spectators how Brazilians party. I started researching flights to Brazil just from watching her Coachella set back on YouTube. Fans are eager to see what she’ll bring to the stage for the music festival’s second weekend.

Anitta’s career has taken a turn for the better in the blink of an eye. From collaborating with Latin artists like J Balvin in 2017, to becoming one of the world’s largest Latin pop artists herself, this is just the beginning for Anitta. As she continues to establish herself in Latin America, while breaking into the American music industry, the Brazilian icon will be one to watch.