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|Birth name||María Concepción Balboa Buika|
|Also known as||Buika|
11 May 1972 |
Palma de Mallorca, Spain
María Concepción Balboa Buika (born May 11, 1972) known as Concha Buika and by the stage name Buika, is a Spanish singer. Her album Niña de Fuego was nominated for the 2008 Latin Grammy Award for Album of the Year and La Noche Más Larga was nominated for Best Latin Jazz Album at the 56th Annual Grammy Awards in 2014.
Concha Buika was born on May 11, 1972, in Palma de Mallorca in Spain. She is the daughter of Equatoguinean parents, the late writer Juan Balboa and Honorina Buika. She and her parents were political exiles of her parents' native Equitorial Guinea, and she was born in Palma Mallorca Spain. Buika currently lives in Miami, Florida, United States. She is openly bisexual.
Buika is a singer, poet, composer and music producer. Her music draws on a wide range of influences, from jazz and flamenco to pop, soul and African polyrhythm. She began her career as a drummer and bassist, turning to singing only because "in Spain nobody wanted a female drummer, and I got tired of hearing no, no, no." Buika then gained fame singing coplas in Madrid nightclubs in the late 1990s. She has been compared to Nina Simone, Chavela Vargas, Cesaria Evora, Billie Holiday, Edith Piaf, and Amy Winehouse.
In 2000, Buika released her first album Mestizuo (2000, Producciones Blau S.L.). This was followed by Buika (2005, DRO) and a trilogy produced by music producer Javier Limón: Mi Niña Lola (My Girl Lola - 2006, DRO), Niña de Fuego (Girl of Fire - 2008, Warner), which included her first book of poems, and El Ultimo Trago (The Last Sip - 2009, Warner), an anthology album featuring Chucho Valdés, Cuba’s standard-bearing pianist, and songs associated with Chavela Vargas, the Mexican ranchera singer.
Buika's largely self-produced seventh album, La Noche Mas Larga (Warner), recorded in New York City and Madrid, came out on June 4, 2013. The album contains five of her own compositions, including a collaboration with Pat Metheny on Buika's own composition "No Lo Se", as well as her take on such classic songs as "La Nave del Olvido", "Don't Explain", "Ne Me Quitte Pas" and "Siboney".
Buika's second book of poems, A Los Que Amaron a Mujeres Dificiles y Acabaron por Soltarse ("To those who loved difficult women and ended up letting go"), came out through Edaf (Madrid) in the fall of 2014. She continues to work on producing her first movie based on one of her poems, which is titled "From Solitude to Hell". Buika is also working on a novel, an opera and an exhibit featuring her photography and her son's artwork.
In the fall of 2015, her eighth album, Vivir Sin Miedo, was released, the first album containing her own compositions sung in English, Spanish and a mix of the two languages. Vivir Sin Miedo was recorded over four months in Miami, New York, London and Madrid, co-produced with producer Martin Terefe. The first track, also titled "Vivir Sin Miedo", was released through all digital channels on July 31, 2015. The album contains a number of collaborations, including with Me'shell Ndegeocello and Jason Mraz.
Buika has collaborated with musicians and singers in Spanish, Catalan, English, French and Portuguese, with artists such as Anoushka Shankar, Chick Corea, Niño Josele, Mariza, Bebo and Chucho Valdes, Luz Casal, Ivan "Melon" Lewis, "Dizzy" Daniel Moorehead, Jose Luis Perales, Seal, Armando Manzanero, Nelly Furtado, Charles Aznavour, and Javier Limon.
Buika has also collaborated on the soundtracks of several films. In 2011, director Pedro Almodóvar included two Buika songs--"Por el amor de amar" (For love's sake) and "Se me hizo facil" (I found it easy)--in his movie La piel que habito (The Skin I Live In). Buika also appeared onscreen for the movie.
Buika has performed all over the globe, including the United States, most of Europe, Australia, New Zealand, Turkey, Argentina and Mexico in the last 12 months alone. She has sometimes toured with a small ensemble, usually a guitarist, bassist and cajón player.
- Mestizüo, with Jacob Sureda (2000)
- Buika (2005)
- Mi Niña Lola (2006)
- Niña de Fuego (2008)
- El Último Trago, with Chucho Valdés (2009)
- En Mi Piel (2011) (Compilation)
- La Noche Más Larga (2013)
- Vivir Sin Miedo (2015)
- Para mí (2017)
Awards and nominations
Buika's albums have received the following awards:
- Disco de Oro - certified Gold for the album Mi niña Lola, presented by Joaquin Sabina.
- Best Spanish Song Album: Mi niña Lola (Premios de la Musica, 2007 ).
- Best Producer: Mi niña Lola, Javier Limon (Premios de la Musica, 2007 ).
- Germany Visual Critics Award 2007: Mi niña Lola
- Disco de Oro - certified gold for El Ultimo Trago (Colombia, 2010 ).
- Latin Grammy Awards 2010: Best Traditional Tropical Album for El Ultimo Trago.
Buika's albums and songs have received the following nominations:
- Latin Grammy Awards 2008: Album of the Year: Niña de Fuego (2008, Warner/Casa Limon ).
- Latin Grammy Awards 2010: Record of the Year: Se Me Hizo Facil.
- Latin Grammy Awards 2013: Record of the Year: La Nave del Olvido.
- Grammy Awards 2013: Best Latin Jazz Album: La Noche Mas Larga (2013, Warner Music Spain S.L.).
- Latin Grammy Awards 2016: Record of the Year: Si Volveré.
- Arcos, Betto (August 31, 2013). "Spanish Singer Buika Awakens From Her Long Night". NPR. Retrieved June 22, 2015.
- "La cantante española de origen africano Concha Buika: 'Soy bisexual, trifásica y tridimensional'", Informe21.com, August 22, 2009.
- Winkler, Alise, "Buika: The Voice Of Freedom", NPR Music, November 2, 2010.
- Rohter, Larry. "A Singer From Everywhere Arrives Here". The New York Times. Retrieved June 22, 2015.
- Gladstone, Valerie (April 25, 2010). "Buika, Genre-Busting Artist, Plays Berlin". The New York Times. Retrieved June 22, 2015.
- "Flamenco Sensation Buika Embraces Her Animal Voice". NPR. June 13, 2013. Retrieved June 22, 2015.
- Smallman, Etan (March 9, 2015). "Concha Buika: the outspoken queen of flamenco fusion". The Guardian. Retrieved June 22, 2015.
- Ratliff, Ben (October 18, 2009). "BUIKA Y CHUCHO". The New York Times. Retrieved June 22, 2015.
- Baró, Carlos Olivares, "La noche más larga de Buika", La Razón, June 29, 2013.
- Spencer, Neil, "Buika: La Noche Más Larga – review", The Observer, June 23, 2013.
- "Entrevista con Buika: 'Si he cambiado en algo es en que antes no confiaba en el mundo y ahora sí'". El Iberico. April 10, 2015. Retrieved June 22, 2015.
- Hildebrand, Lee (December 8, 2013). "Singer Buika draws upon a world of influences". SF Gate. Retrieved June 22, 2015.
- Álvarez, Marcela (June 18, 2015). "Buika: 'La música esthe como Dios, está en todas partes'". El Diario. Retrieved June 22, 2015.
- Gilbert, Andrew (February 20, 2015). "Genre-defying diva Buika's naked ambition". SF Gate.
- Stampone, David R. (April 8, 2014). "Smoky-voiced Buika brings 'a little bit of everything' to the Perelman". Philly.com. Retrieved June 22, 2015.
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