San Juan – Puerto Rican record producer DJ Blass, a pioneer of reggaeton, is back in the studio after a two-year hiatus to deal with health problems.
The man born Vladimir Felix marked an important phase in the development of the musical genre, working with artists such as Don Omar and Daddy Yankee.
Now 32, Blass decided to return to the market to recover his position as one of the main reggaeton producers after having spent two years working on losing about 300 pounds (140 kilos).
Among his near-term plans, he is presently working on the new productions by De La Ghetto and the duo Jowell & Randy.
In an interview with Efe, Blass said that he gained 200 pounds in 10 years from eating junk food during long nights in his recording studio.
It was after ballooning to 410 pounds and developing sleep apnea, a potentially fatal condition, that he decided to step back from music and focus on his health.
His first professional opportunity arose in 2000 when veteran producer DJ Joe invited him to produce on the album "Los francotiradores," by Master Joe and OG Black.
The producer, who collaborated on the first album by Calle 13, admitted that the music of that socially conscious hip hop duo cannot be called reggaeton because it's "more alternative, it transcends genres and reaches different social classes."
Blass advised other rappers who "understand the dialect of other communities and cultures on the international level to be able to expand to other countries."