Decades Later, Her Fans Prove Buika's Teacher Was Wrong

Host Michel Martin and editor Ammad Omar open up the listener inbox for backtalk. This week, there's a lot of love for Spanish singer Buika.

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MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

And now it's time for BackTalk. That's where we hear from you. Editor Ahmad Omar is back with us today. Ahmad, what's up?

AHMAD OMAR, BYLINE: Hey, Michel. Earlier this week, we talked to a panel of women about how they feel when guys whistle at them, or yell at them out on the street about how they look. That sort of thing.

MARTIN: Like, hey, hey. Like that?

OMAR: Yeah, I could see how that would get annoying, for sure.

MARTIN: Yeah.

OMAR: But Michel, after the conversation, we also heard from some guys. Julio Riddick (ph) from Alexandria, Virginia wrote in. He says, as a man, I am highly annoyed at the inappropriate catcalling that men employee on the street towards women. It makes it much harder for the good guys to approach women in a respectful way. After a woman has dealt with being disrespected so many times in a given day, they tend to reject any subsequent approach, even when that person might be trying to be respectful.

MARTIN: Have you found that experience in your experience, too, or does your charm just overwhelms all?

OMAR: Rather not say, but that's from Julio. That's his point of view.

MARTIN: Okay, what else, Ahmad?

OMAR: All right. We got a ton of letters after our music segment yesterday, Michel. Let's have a quick listen to remind folks what we heard.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "DON'T EXPLAIN")

MARTIN: Well, to everybody who may have missed the top of the conversation, that person is Buika. She's a Spanish singer from the island of Mallorca. When she was a little girl, her choir instructor told her she sounded like a dog and shouldn't be singing. Well, looks like the haters were wrong.

OMAR: Yeah, Michel. We just heard her cover of Billie Holiday's "Don't Explain." It's on her latest album "La Noche Mas Larga." Honoree Jeffers (ph) from Norman, Oklahoma tweeted us using the handle BlkLibraryGirl. She said, I love Buika. I first heard her on NPR Music a couple of years ago. I was moved so much, I wept in a good way.

MARTIN: Well, thanks, Honoree. And thanks for that, Ahmad.

OMAR: Thank you.

MARTIN: And remember, at Tell Me More, the conversation never ends. To tell us more, you can visit us online at NPR.org/TellMeMore. Please remember to leave us your name. We're on Twitter. Just look for Tell Me More NPR. Up next, we'll head to the barbershop. The guys will talk about how Lebron James and the Heat tied up the NBA finals, and who can resist hearing what Kanye West is up to. That's ahead on TELL ME MORE from NPR News. I'm Michel Martin.

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