All twelve songs on this album have been written and sung by Kuky, a young, attractive, easy-going woman with a soaring voice that draws you in, and is occasionally accompanied by her producers, the Akwid brothers Sergio and Francisco Gómez, on two songs of their first non-Akwid album.
This CD from Machete Music/Universal Music Group actually contains two additional versions of these songs that manage to pack R&B, international pop melodies, a sprinkling of hip-hop and even some mariachi fusions into a very personalized and alternative sound, bringing the grand total up to an immensely moving 14 cuts.
The first single, “Ya No” (“No more”), is both an eloquent and creative example of Kuky’s talent, who defiantly sings in a language that is clear, current and everyday about shutting the door on a relationship, “major lárgate ya… ya no quiero seguir viviendo así, esto no es para mí” (“You’d better just go… I don’t want to keep living this way anymore. This isn’t for me.”).
Besides bringing out her message, this musical arrangement by Akwid gives “Ya No” a context that every woman has experienced, one in which she says “No more” to the man who has promised to change and tries to, but never actually does.
Kuky, a Pisces born Lucero Rodriguez on February 23, is currently based in Northridge, California. She describes herself as “a dreamer with a big heart, for whom the most important thing is to try to find happiness in whatever she’s doing.” The greatest music teacher she has ever had in her life was her mother, who used to sing with Mariachis in rodeo shows and festivals: “She would bring me along to her shows, and that environment had a big influence on me.”
Her adopted name, “Kuky” was given to her in high school by her classmates who noticed her cheerful attitude that was “kind of clownish and sometimes sardonic.”
Strangely enough, back in her schooldays, the only thing that she sang was the national anthem and a couple of Christmas songs every now and then. But once she graduated, she made her way into music “little by little” by working in choirs at recording studios.
This is the area that she has been developing over the past five years, which is how she met the Gómez brothers who make up Akwid. The first thing they did was invite her to do some shows with them and ended up encouraging her to take the decisive leap to go solo, which is what she had “always” wanted to do.
Until then, she had never thought about singing or writing in Spanish. But once they gave her the music for a song for her to try out, Kuky threw herself into the task of writing the lyrics in the language of her ancestors. She admits with a smile that she kind of “half wanted and half didn’t want to do it.” The end result was so outstanding that she ended up composing all of the songs that were recorded for this album, her first career achievement.
As a result of their enthusiasm for and admiration of her, Akwid became Kuky’s star guest performers, and can be heard in two of her songs: “Bailar y Gozar” (Dance and Enjoy) and “Let Me See” in English.
But the Gómez brothers aren’t the only ones who have succumbed to her musical charms; as soon as the single “Ya No” was barely test released, several radio stations in various American markets picked it up, which is unusual for a new artist.
These radio stations know quite well that “Kuky”, the album and Kuky, the voice, are one in the same: the new artist on the block who’s got all the essential ingredients to be a star who was born to shine.