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Over the past few years, Latin music has become one of the biggest genres in the world, with fans from every corner of the earth tuning in regardless of any cultural or language barriers.

Premios Billboard de la Musica Latina 2020 - Season 2020

Source: Telemundo / Getty

While representation of the Latin community is important, there’s an obvious problem with most of the rising stars in the music industry: a lack of diversity.

In May 2022, the Project on Ethnicity and Race in Latin America (PERLA) at Princeton University estimated that about 130 million people in Latin America are of African descent. Still, the Latin entertainment industry doesn’t represent that.

One star who’s changing that narrative is Sech, a Panamanian singer who believes that promoting the Afro-Latino community will help bring visibility to their culture.

 “I’m happy and proud of my roots, the flavor,” he told People En Español in 2020. “We have an insane story that goes way back. We suffered if you know about the history, but the flavor and music remained.”

Throughout his meteoric rise in the years since, Sech has collaborated with some of the biggest artists in the world including Bad Bunny, DJ Khaled, Daddy Yankee, Rauw Alejandro, and more. At the end of 2021, the Panamanian crooner made the Top 50 most streamed artists globally at #44, right below Maluma, Jhay Cortez, and Farruko.

Last year, he released his third studio album, 42, which he labels a tribute to his Afro roots.

“It’s a tribute to Jackie Robinson, the first African American baseball player to play in Major League Baseball. He went through a lot and never quit,” Sech explained to Billboard upon the album’s release. “From there, they removed the number from baseball and they later gave it to Mariano Rivera, a Panamanian baseball player. It has a lot of value for me.”

While the Latin music scene still needs a lot more representation, a star like Sech rising to the top is a beautiful thing to see.

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