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"El Niágara en Bicicleta" Single by Juan Luis Guerra y 4-40 from the album Ni Es Lo Mismo Ni Es Igual Released May 1999 Format Airplay Genre Merengue Length 4:25 Label KAREN Writer(s) Juan Luis Guerra Producer Juan Luis Guerra Juan Luis Guerra y 4-40 singles chronology "Palomita Blanca" (1999) "El Niagara en Bicicleta" (1999) "La Hormiguita" (1999) "El Niágara en Bicicleta" (English: Niagara Falls by Bicycle, literally Niagara Falls on a Bicycle) is a song written and performed by Dominican singer-songwriter Juan Luis Guerra and his backup vocal group, 4-40. The track was released as the third single released from his eighth studio album, Ni Es Lo Mismo Ni Es Igual which Guerra produced by himself.[1] The single became a success on the Top Latin Songs and Latin Tropical Airplay chart where it peaked #2.[2] Contents 1 Song Information 2 Music video 3 Chart performance 3.1 Charts 4 Reception 5 References // Song Information The phrase "[pasar] el Niágara en bicicleta" (English: to ride a bicycle across Niagara Falls) is a Cuban idiom used to describe overcoming a difficult situation.[3] In the song, Guerra uses the term to describe the near impossibility of obtaining medical treatment in a third world country. He has been known to compose political songs that reflect on the current situation in his country.[4] In writing the song, Guerra stated that he was inspired by "a pressing problem with public health services in my country.[5] The song was based on the experience on a hospital trip he took for his high bilirubin and criticized the lack of equipment that was either broken or unavailable.[6] Music video The music video was directed by Venezuelan-American JC Barros and was filmed in Santo Domingo and Miami, Florida over two days.[7] As with the song, the music video takes place in a hospital after a person had an accident on a bicycle. Due to a lack of supplies however, the person is asked to wait for his turn in a long line of people.[8] Chart performance "El Niágara en Bicicleta" debuted at #39 where it climbed to #5 on the week of May 8, 1999.[9] The song then peaked #2 on the Top Latin Songs on the week of May 29, 1999 for which was being held off by Ricky Martin's song Livin' La Vida Loca.[10] Charts Chart (1999) Peak position US Billboard Top Latin Songs [11] 2 US Billboard Latin Pop Airplay [11] 4 US Billboard Latin Tropical Airplay [11] 2 Reception On the review of the album, Evan Gutierrez described "El Niágara en Bicicleta" as "irresistibly singable".[12] David Wilson of Wilson & Alroy's called the song "an interesting merengue-rap".[13] On an editorial review of the album, Fernando Gonzalez of Amazon.com called the song the highlight of disc describing it as "Guerra at his very best".[14] In 2000, the song received a Latin Grammy Award for "Best Tropical Song" as well as a Latin Grammy Award nomination for "Song of the Year".[15][16] The song also received a Latin Billboard Music Award for "Tropical/Salsa Track of the Year".[17] References ^ "Ni Es Lo Mismo Ni Es Igual - Credits". Allmusic. http://www.allmusic.com/cg/amg.dll?p=amg&sql=10:anfwxqrjldse~T2. Retrieved August 18, 2010.  ^ "Juan Luis Guerra — Charts & Awards — Billboard Singles". Allmusic. Rovi Corporation. http://www.allmusic.com/cg/amg.dll?p=amg&sql=11:wnfrxqq5ldde~T51. Retrieved 2010-09-13.  ^ Ortega, Josefina. "CUBANOS EN EL NIÁGARA". .lajiribilla. http://www.lajiribilla.cubaweb.cu/2003/n118_08/memoria.html. Retrieved September 14, 2010.  ^ Levin, Jordan (June 21, 2002). "Guerra's Music Mirrors Dominican Republic". The Miami Herald. http://www.colby.edu/~bknelson/SLC/ojala/jlg.html. Retrieved August 9, 2010.  ^ Juárez, Celeste. "Juan Luis Guerra". in. http://in-lan.com/juan-luis-guerra-2?lang=en. Retrieved September 14, 2010.  ^ Small, Mark. "Juan Luis Guerra: Tropical Music Superstar". Berklee College of Music. http://www.berklee.edu/bt/171/coverstory.html. Retrieved September 14, 2010.  ^ Rivera, Miguel. "Juan Luis Guerra pide al pueblo que se apegue a Dios para detener la violencia" (in Spanish). Guavaberry.net. http://www.guavaberry.net/articulos_y_entrevistas/religiosos/2000/guerrasiglo.html. Retrieved September 14, 2010.  ^ Guerra, Juan Luis (actor, singer) (in Spanish). El Niágara en Bicicleta by Juan Luis Guerra Music Video on Yahoo! Music. [Music video]. Yahoo! Music. http://new.music.yahoo.com/Juan-Luis-Guerra/videos/view/El-Niagara-En-Bicicleta--2142390. Retrieved August 30, 2010.  ^ "El Niágara en Bicicleta — Week of December 5, 1998". Billboard. May 8, 1999. http://www.billboard.com/#/charts/latin-songs?chartDate=1999-05-08. Retrieved September 13, 2010.  ^ "El Niágara en Bicicleta — Week of May 29, 1999". Billboard. May 29, 1999. http://www.billboard.com/artist/juan-luis-guerra-y-440/66634#/charts/latin-songs?chartDate=1999-05-29. Retrieved September 14, 2010.  ^ a b c "Ni Es Lo Mismo Ni Es Igual — Charts & Awards — Billboard Singles". Allmusic. Rovi Corporation. http://www.allmusic.com/cg/amg.dll?p=amg&sql=10:anfwxqrjldse~T31. Retrieved September 13, 2010.  ^ Gutierrez, Evan. "Ni Es Lo Mismo Ni Es Igual > Review". Allmusic. http://www.allmusic.com/cg/amg.dll?p=amg&sql=10:anfwxqrjldse~T1. Retrieved August 6, 2010.  ^ Wilson, David. "Wilson & Alroy's Record Reviews - Juan Luis Guerra". warr.org. http://www.warr.org/guerra.html#NELMNEI. Retrieved August 6, 2010.  ^ Gonzalez, Fernando. "Ni Es Lo Mismo Ni Es Igual - Editorial Reviews". Amazon.com. http://www.amazon.com/Ni-Es-Lo-Mismo-Igual/dp/B00000GBYS. Retrieved September 14, 2010.  ^ Bashman, David (September 14, 2000). "Santana, Luis Miguel, Maná Lead Latin Grammy Winners". MTV. http://www.mtv.com//news/articles/1431652/20000914/mana.jhtml. Retrieved August 17, 2010.  ^ Bresson, Nancy (July 7, 2000). "Latin Grammy Nominations Announced". NBC. http://www.nbcmontana.com/sh/entertainment/stories/entertainment-20000707-205448.html. Retrieved September 14, 2010.  ^ Lannert, John (April 29, 2000). "And The Award Goes To...". Billboard (Nielsen Business Media, Inc.): LM-62. http://books.google.com/books?id=EA8EAAAAMBAJ&lpg=RA1-PA16&dq=juan%20luis%20guerra%20ni%20es%20lo%20mismo%20intitle%3Abillboard&pg=RA1-PA18#v=onepage&q&f=false. Retrieved September 14, 2010.