Ednita Nazario

La Diva

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There are too many Ednita Nazario compilations to count, as practically every year since her career took flight in the mid-'80s sees the release of a new one. While these compilations grow increasingly scattershot in their attempt to avoid redundancy, it's nice to have a reasonably compiled, fairly well-rounded collection like La Diva on the market. A lot of the songs compiled on La Diva have shown up one compilation or another, make no mistake about that, yet here on La Diva they're sequenced more or less chronologically and span much of her career, from the late '70s to the late 2000s. La Diva opens with a trio of gems from the early to mid-'80s that were key in establishing the Puerto Rican vocalist as a rising star on the international Latin pop scene: "A Que No le Cuentas" from the album Ednita (1982), "La Prohibida" from Al Rojo Vivo (1983), and "Tú Sin Mí" from Tú Sin Mí (1986). Of course, Nazario's recording career had begun way back in 1973 when she was a teenager, and while none of her earliest hits such as "Te Quiero y No Me Importa" are found here, the disco-fashioned title track of her sixth album, Retrato de Mujer (1979), is something of a token inclusion, and a welcome one at that. It separates the trio of '80s singles that open La Diva from the trio of '90s singles that follow: "Lo Que son las Cosas" from Lo Que son las Cosas (1991), "Un Corazón Hecho Pedazos" from Metamorfosis (1992), and "Como Antes" from Pasiones (1994). The remaining nine tracks of La Diva are culled from her new-millennium output, thereby tilting the compilation's balance heavily toward the 21st rather than the 20th century. While all the selections compiled on La Diva are reasonable up to this point, about half of this 2000s material is questionable, in particular a pair of tracks from her unplugged album Acoustico, Vol. 1 (2002) and another pair from the in-concert album Apasionada Live (2006). Given the dozen-and-a-half singles that Nazario released during the 2000s, there were surely better selections passed over for this live material. This minor quibble aside, there's a lot to like about La Diva, far and away one of the best Nazario compilations still in print.

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