Thalia Releases New Música Mexicana Album “A Mucha Honra”

Throughout her illustrious career, Thalia has proudly represented Mexican culture through her music, iconic looks, and unforgettable performances. With música Mexicana going global, the Mexican pop icon is tapping into the sounds of her roots through her new album “A Mucha Honra,” where she pays homage to the music of her country while embracing the new wave of corridos.

“This album is called ‘A Mucha Honra’ because, as a Mexican, it makes me so excited to sing this music,” she tells PS. “It’s in my DNA. I feel like with everything happening now with our music on a global level, it’s made us so proud. This is a celebration of our music and Mexican culture.”

Thalia’s career spans five decades since she entered the scene in the ’80s as a member of the Mexican children’s group Timbiriche. In the ’90s, she launched her solo career, which took her worldwide, transforming her into a global artist. Among the many genres she’s explored as a top Latina pop star, Mexican rhythms like mariachi and ranchera have always been present in her biggest hits like the empowering “Piel Morena” or the sultry “Amor a la Mexicana.” Thalia credits her longevity to always changing with the times.

“Follow your pulse,” she says. “Follow your intuition, which will soon guide you in learning different things about yourself. Sing different styles of music. Embrace things that will help you refresh your style and help you grow, change, and evolve. You have to dare yourself to take chances. I believe that’s always been a principle of my career.”

“A Mucha Honra” isn’t Thalia’s first rodeo in the música Mexicana realm. In addition to her aforementioned hits, she also released a banda music album in 2001. “Thalia Con Banda: Grandes Éxitos” included her classics like “Arrasando,” “Entre el Mar y una Estrella,” and “María la del Barrio,” the theme song to one of her famous telenovelas, which was rerecorded in the banda style. Thalia shakes off the criticisms of people who overlook her past in the música Mexicana genre.

“In my music, I’ve always sung with Mexican arrangements in different albums throughout my career,” she says. “It’s something that’s always been constant within my discography. I have a wonderful fan base. My Thali-familia are incredible for remembering things that we’ve done together. That’s beautiful because they have a strong connection with me. This isn’t something that I’m doing out of nowhere. I’ve always done it.”

What is different about Thalia’s latest exploration of música Mexicana is that she’s taking on contemporary sounds. What has helped the genre go global is the rise of corridos tumbados, or the trap-infused take on the traditional Mexican corrido and sierreño. Corridos tumbados were first popularized in 2019 by Mexican singer Natanael Cano and his LA-based label Rancho Humilde. More Gen Z artists like his labelmates Junior H and Fuerza Regida and Mexican superstar Peso Pluma have pushed corridos tumbados to the top of the charts. Sierreño has also made waves thanks to the success of the Mexican American group Eslabon Armado. For “A Mucha Honra,” Thalia tapped Rancho Humilde founder Jimmy Humilde and Edgar Rodríguez, who has produced hits for this new generation of artists. She seamlessly blends sierreño and pop in the heartbreaking ballad “Bebé, Perdón.”

“[Edgar] has the Yellow Room [recording studio] where all the música Mexicana stars have recorded,” she says. “This album was created at the center of the Mexican movement that’s taking over. It has that strong and intense essence of that movement and captures what Jimmy and Edgar do best. The songs and arrangements are spectacular.”

Men largely dominate the música Mexicana scene. Though there have been patronas in the past, like the late Selena Quintanilla and Jenni Rivera, young women are still trying to break through in this latest movement. Thalia uses her platform to highlight those women in the genre, like Estilo Sin Limite’s Dania Valenzuela and Ángela Aguilar, the daughter of música Mexicana icon Pepe Aguilar. Thalia and Valenzuela tell their exes to get lost in the kiss-off corrido “Choro,” and Aguilar later joins her for the tequila-kissed love song “Troca.”

“I love to be able to bring girl power to música Mexicana,” she says. “It’s beautiful to plant this seed and open that door so that more women can exist in this genre.”

Música Mexicana also has a history of excluding the LGBTQ+ community, who make up a large part of Thalia’s fan base. When I tell her that queer fans are ready to put on their cowboy boots and sombreros to enjoy this album, she says with a laugh, “I love that!” She adds, “The message in my music has always been about love. It’s about unity. That’s what I’ve always wanted to share. It’s a celebration of life. If I can unite hearts through my music, that is the most beautiful gift to me as a singer and artist.”

Thalia has continued to thrive over the years, thanks to her willingness to embrace different genres. She blended reggaeton and pop in the global hits “No Me Acuerdo” with Natti Natasha and “Desde Esa Noche” featuring Maluma, both of which have over a billion views on YouTube. She also looks to the past for inspiration, such as with her last album, “Thalia’s Mixtape,” where she revisited rock en español with the legends of that era. Now Thalia is adding corridos and sierreño to her música Mexicana palette.

A surprise that all Thalia fans will love on “A Mucha Honra” is her new version of “Amor a la Mexicana.” She rerecorded the 1997 hit with a fiery corrido arrangement. Like throughout most of the album, Thalia digs deep to show off a more husky and soulful side to her voice. Nearly 30 years later, she still knows how to fiercely serve up love — Mexican style.

“What more I could do to round out this full-circle moment was sing a song that’s a part of my stamp on music,” she says. “It’s what I’ve always been singing for — Mexico. It’s logical. When I finished recording that new version, I said, ‘Wow! That’s really me now.'”

Lucas Villa is a Mexican American music journalist who covers pop and Latin music. Over 11 years, he has interviewed pop queens and Latin music superstars for places like PS, Allure, Elle, Rolling Stone, Billboard, MTV News, Paper, W Magazine, Vibe, and LGBTQ Nation.

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