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Music / Álex Ubago

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Alejandro Martínez de Ubago Rodríguez (January 29, 1981), best known as Álex Ubago, is a Spanish singer-songwriter. He is considered a staple of the Hispanic pop scene of the 2000s, standing out not only due to his long-lived career compared to other artists and bands of the period, but also for his well carved niche in Spanish pop culture.

Teaching himself to sing during his teenage years, Ubago debuted in the professional field with a song he wrote for his then girlfriend. His works eventually reached the manager of legendary pop band La Oreja de Van Gogh, who gave him a chance, and Ubago soon was the big next newcomer with his album "¿Qué pides tú?" in 2001. His success was instant, both in Spain and only in Latin America, cramming an Ondas Award and an endless-looking list of platinum discs that only increased with his next works. His next work, Fantasía o realidad, would cement his place in Spain and Latin America, reaching and surpassing the gold disc and getting nominated as Best Pop Artist and Best Male Artist in the Latin MTV Awards.

The New '10s was the era in which Ubago finally started losing momentum, although he diversified into a side project, a band named Álex, Jorge y Lena formed along with Jorge Villamizar and Lena Burke and produced in México, which became a similar sensation in Latin America. He notably slowed down shortly before Mentiras sinceras, his last album to date.

Ubago's style is intensely heartfelt, based on his very personal voice and his knack for portraying nostalgia, melancholy and lost love in his lyrics, which has earned him the amusing distinction of being considered the not only the most romantic, but also the saddest singer in Spanish history. He is popularly considered to be a depressive kind of artist, which over the years brought out a line of ruthless memes entertaining that his music style can induce clinical depression and suicide if listened to too much. Ubago has consistently denied this, describing himself as a funny guy who simples gets more inspired by sad love stories.


  • 2001: ¿Qué pides tú?
  • 2003: Fantasía o realidad
  • 2006: Aviones de cristal
  • 2009: Calle ilusión
  • 2010: Álex, Jorge y Lena
  • 2012: Mentiras sinceras
  • 2017: Canciones impuntuales

His work contains examples of:

  • Break Up Song: "Amarrado a ti" and "Nada que dar" have a listener somberly reaching the limit of his tolerance towards a love that turned out to be not as innocent as she looked.
  • Earth Song: Although starting as a Love Nostalgia Song instead, "La estación" turns into a pacifist and ecologist theme this throughout its lyrics, commiserating our poor world, mistreated by contamination and evil.
  • The Eeyore: Ubago has this reputation as an artist, and presumably as a person, although he claims otherwise, explaining it's just that sad songs and feelings inspire him more.
  • Grief Song: According to "La estación", there is nothing worse than watching all of your dreams fleeing away.
  • I Want My Beloved to Be Happy: Several songs, but especially "Aunque no te pueda ver", which strongly implies the girl the singer is comforting to be his unrequited love.
  • Location Song: Many of them, such as "Amsterdam", "La estación", "Calle Ilusión", "Ciudad desierta", have a place motif, either metaphorical or literal.
  • Love Nostalgia Song: This and Grief Song could be considered Ubago's specialty, both personally self-admitted and popularly stereotyped. "Viajar contigo" was a particularly advertised one back at its day, but even those which doesn't address this topic directly have it as a hue.
  • Morality Ballad: "La estación" unexpectedly combines a Love Nostalgia Song and an Earth Song.
  • Ode to Family: "Somos familia" describes the singer's feelings upon finding the person he can form a family with.
  • Pep-Talk Song: "No te rindas" assumes the listener needs some encouragement.
  • The Power of Family: "Somos familia" goes about this, stating how the family he forms with significant other gives him strength.
  • Revenge Ballad: "Nada que dar" is a cheeky, unusually energetic song (unusually for Ubago, that is) about how he finally managed to be free from her control and live on.
  • Self-Empowerment Anthem: "No te rindas" encourages the listener to fly even if others cut his wings off.
  • Tall, Dark, and Handsome: His music videos often emphasize this side of him.
  • Train Song: "La estación" and "Viajar contigo" both referring to trains as the course of love, eventually leading nowhere, and the station as an equally fruitless place to waiting, where one can be trapped forever.
  • Undying Loyalty: The aptly "Nunca dejé de creer" finishes the refrain stating that he never stopped believing in her love.
  • "When I'm Gone" Song: A lot of his songs have a timeless feel, as if the singer was dead, between life and death, or trapped in a metaphorical limbo. You could reasonably assume the singer has Unfinished Business.
  • You Are Not Alone: "Aunque no te pueda ver", perhaps the most famous of this kind of song in the Spanish 2000s, has the singer comforting a heartbroken female friend and promising to be always there for her.