By Vanessa Quintero
This may be a bit belated, but please believe me when I say that you need to listen to Juan Wauters. Juan was born an Uruguay and moved to Queens, where he began his music career with his more popular band, The Beets. I had the pleasure of hearing Juan Wauters for the first time at the Mac DeMarco concert back in April, and I will not hesitate to say that I – albeit a huge fan of Mac – enjoyed Juan’s set much more and his songs have been stuck in my head ever since.
Juan set up his stage with unusual lighting – one strobe light in front of his microphone and another behind his flags – an American flag and a flag he made himself, which represented his first solo album, North American Poetry. While most of the crowd stood admiring, some members spent their time imitating his accent or mocking his broken English. Juan, however, was unfazed, and played one of the most intimate and endearing sets I’ve ever had the pleasure of seeing. His set wasn’t long, seeing as his songs are short and sweet themselves, with only one track on N.A.P. being over 3 minutes. He played his most known songs, such as “Ay Ay Ay,” “Water,” “Sanity or Not,” and
“Escucho Mucho.” By the time he left the stage, I found myself running to his merch table to buy some Juan gear to show how much I appreciated him.
His music is incredibly unique and separates him from other folk artists due to his storytelling, strong vocals, and strongly Latin America-influenced rhythms. Juan carries himself in such a way that feels like you’re watching your friend up there on stage, despite not quite having met them yet. If you’re a fan of folk and are looking for a new sound, do yourself a favor and give Juan a listen.