No, I’m not claiming credit for ‘discovering’ Chenoa, I’m talking about the intoxicating days in 2010 when I first came across Laura Corradini, known professionally as Chenoa. The story begins with the Wacky Races and there can be few people my age, outside North Korea, who didn’t grow up with the Wacky Races, but can you remember who took part?
Dick Dastardly, Mutley, Penelope Pitstop and the Ant Hill Mob are usually the first names that come to mind, but I decided to find them all and in doing so rediscovered a 2D world of cartoon heroes and villains.
Amongst the names and faces like Foghorn Leghorn, Wile E Coyote and Tom and Jerry was Tweety, the bald nemesis of Sylvester the Cat. An image search of all these animated nutcases produced one modern day curiosity: a Tweety promotion somewhere in the world fronted by a bob-haired woman with a smile so wide it almost burst out the sides of my laptop.
Various bits and pieces on display had one name in common. Chenoa. The search headed in a different direction, the website, the Youtube videos and finally the music. The music!
I thought I knew a bit about European singers. People like Lara Fabian and Laura Pausini had been in my music collection for some time, so how had I missed Chenoa?
Coming from a musical family, Laura Corradini moved from Argentina at an early age and soon followed her mother on stage. By the time she appeared on Operacion Triunfo in 2001 Chenoa’s career was already off the ground, performing solo and with a jazz band. But it was OT that introduced her to a big Spanish audience and a lot of attention.
I fell in front of this musical tidal wave during the release of Chenoa’s Desafiando la Gravidad album, and the song Duele. It wasn’t long before I was familiar with all the albums (five at that time) and in Nada es Igual one of the finest collections of power pop songs ever recorded; one of those rare albums with no weak links or filler tracks.
I’ve spent weeks analysing why the song Rutinas is so good. When I was recording my own collection of songs I aspired to write music like that. (The unfinished collection ultimately became known as Turia, such was the growing fascination with Spanish culture and a love-hate relationship with Valencia football club!)
Now, having been hung upside down from a ceiling, interviewed by ants (El Hormiguero), sung alongside a muppet-like witch, shocked by Lucas Castanon (La Gran Noche de Terapia) and recorded an exquisite collection of jazz standards (the dvd live recording Mis Canciones Favoritas) Chenoa is on her sixth studio album and still tweaking her sound to appeal to a broader international market.
Chenoa is a hard working singer, always on tour, always performing live, doing what she does best. Entertaining through music and sheer mesmerising personality. And her fanbase reflects her dedication. The Chenoistas are legion.
You should become one. Join us. Revel in the magical world of Chenoa.