The Significance of Carla Morrison


I love Carla Morrison. I remember the first time I saw the video for Compartir (2010), it was refreshing and almost surprising to see someone who looked like me, a thicker girl with dark hair, singing her heart out in a music video. Maybe it is because she is Mexicana. American singers are forced by “industry standards” to be uber-thin with the faces painted like circus clowns. Carla, on the other hand, looks like an average 20-something girl. Over the years, she’s gotten more tattoos. Her clothes look like Forever 21 and she carries herself with the humility of the girl next door. She doesn’t play the innocent or the naive. Instead, she seems to remain the fun and loving girl from Tecate, Baja California, despite her rapid success to Mexican and American fame.

I saw her recently in Austin, Tejas. The crowd was small but loyal. At some moments, I had to leave the crowd because the lyrics to her songs are, at times, too real to handle.

No te quiero perder, 
que el amor se acabe y vuelvas a querer 
otro sabor a miel. 
No te quiero tener, 
porque tanto te amor, comienzo a conocer 
la intensidad de mi ser. 
Dentro de mí, 
semillas tengo de ti 
y sin ti 
pueden querer morir. 

  (Hasta La Piel, 2012)

Her songs are about love, but not the sappy ass pop songs you are used to. Her songs are presented through poetry to express a deeper understanding of loss and love. Words that get to the core. Feelings that go beyond the surface. Lyrics that are non-commercialized, but rather intellectually explaining such a powerful emotion. Plus, they are in Spanish. Enough said.

A trailer from a new documentary was just released yesterday. Encendí Mi Alma follows Carla Morrison and her career. The interviews seems to suggest what Carla’s musical legacy in history will be. The significance of her voice, the significance of the time in which she became successful.

“If this was 10 years ago, I don’t think Carla Morrison would have done as well as she’s done in a relative short period of time.” 

A Mexican born woman, with a body that has been untouched by plastic surgeons, and a genuinely talented musician who rises in America during a time where all of these characteristics are undervalued, dismissed and ignored. Yet, she plays her music and her fans buy it. She sustains herself, as do we.


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