Q MAGAZINE – Just over a week ago, Costa Rican singer-songwriter Debi Nova filled Ticos with pride by being part of the main gala of the 2021 Grammy Awards for the best of world music.
The national artist not only looked beautiful in her stroll on the red carpet, but she was one of the special guests at the event, in which she competed for a gramophone in the category for best ‘Latin urban pop album’.
After the gala, from the nerves to compete against artists such as Ricky Martin, Kany García, Camilo, and Bad Bunny, Debi spoke of her experience at the ceremony and the challenges of having competed for the Grammy.
Wath the video here.
Although in the end the trophy went to Bad Bunny for his album YHLQMDLG, Debi’s career received great support from the industry, this means greater international exposure and more support for her talent.
From her home in Los Angeles, Debi spoke with La Nacion’s Viva about all that her time at the Grammys meant.
How has she been these days after lowering the adrenaline of the Grammys?
Very happy, the truth is that it has been an experience of great emotion, of great adrenaline. The truth is what I thought after the ceremony was: “OK, what are we going to do now?” and I got to work, I’m focused on the new music. We are thinking in April to enter the studio and record new music to see how it goes.
What is your review of your participation in the Grammys?
It was all so fast, actually. First, because of the issue of the pandemic, since I received the nomination I knew it was going to be different because I had already had a different experience with the Latin Grammy. What was known is that it was going to be a virtual presence, that I was going to be connected to a computer.
I was in Costa Rica, I did not plan to travel to Los Angeles, but 10 days before the Grammys we received an email saying that my category was going to be part of the televised gala and this is the first time in the history of the Grammys that this has happened.
That was great news not only for me and for all Latinos, but it also gave me the option to attend the gala. But it was like wow, what do we do? I decided to go to Los Angeles and resolve there because of course, I was going to be there with my head held high representing my country. It was wonderful, obviously very different from what one expects because everything was very measured, but the fact of being there, walking that red carpet, doing that press and sitting in those chairs waiting for my category was incredible.
Let’s go in order. Let’s talk about that dress you chose and what it represents.
In a world without a pandemic, in a normal world, I would have loved to bring a Costa Rican or Latin designer, that was my intention, I tried to search (for one) in the short time but it was impossible. I made the decision to go to Los Angeles quickly because of the quarantine issue, so what I did was contact a stylist in Los Angeles with whom I have been working for 10 years. In such a short time I handed him an inspiration sheet with cutouts, I wanted to use something with very bright colors because it was the Latin category in an Anglo event.
I wanted to wear something red or fuchsia, like very Latin and tropical. The stylist looked for several options for me and on the Wednesday before the show, we had the costume fitting. I fell in love with that dress even though the stylist was nervous and she wondered if it wasn’t a lot of train. I told her that I wanted a lot of train. I fell in love with that dress since I saw it.
Did you talk to Bad Bunny at the gala? We saw the photo of him with him on Instagram …
It was very brief, it was after he won the award. I congratulated him and told him how much I admire him and to keep going putting Latinos up high and we took the photo, it was very brief.
What is the importance for your career of having received the nomination and being at the ceremony?
Personally having been there is like a high point in my career because of what the Grammys mean in the industry. I grew up watching the ceremony on television year after year, as a child I said that one day I would be there, and fulfilling that dream is very crazy. The nice thing about the Grammys is that it is the members of the industry who vote for the jobs and, again, what makes one job better than the other?
I have not had the commercial success that the other nominees have had, but being there is something that I appreciate very much and that I know, and I hope, not only opens doors for me but also puts Central American music on the map, because we are very few of us who have been able to get there and there is a lot of talent.
What comes next?
I think that each album is its own world, in this case, I have the desire to return to Costa Rica for a bit, in the metaphorical sense. This year I had to spend the greatest amount of time back in Costa Rica since I left in 1998, so it has been very nice to reconnect with the country. In fact, we had a meeting with my producer, who will be the same as the 3:33 album, and we decided to do it in Costa Rica.
We went to Puerto Viejo, set up a recording studio, recorded and wrote there. I don’t know where this album is going to take me, but the goal is to continue being curious about what is most important in art, that one feels curious and eager to continue doing it.
In Costa Rica there was a lot of support during the award ceremony, people felt they were accompanying her. What has the support of the Costa Rican public meant in your career?
That’s all, it’s the best, I appreciate it so much. I really feel so proud to be from Costa Rica because even though we are a tiny country, these are the signs that we have a lot of strength. I saw it in the comments on the networks, that gives one strength, the union, the passion for the national. Hopefully, that passion is not only for what comes out but also a passion for what we create among ourselves because that is what is going to make us take off.
Costa Rica is my family, it is my home and I am dying to do another concert like the one we did last year, hopefully soon I can do another show there.