Before the Puerto Rican musician now known as Lunay even began uploading his music to SoundCloud under the moniker “Jefnier” (his given name is Jefnier Osorio Moreno), he was posting his teenage freestyle raps on Facebook. Now, at 20, he’s already worked with industry heavyweights like Ozuna, Bad Bunny and Daddy Yankee—whom Lunay first met as a fan long ago. For W’s annual music issue, we spoke to the rising star about his musical family, his relationship to social media, and working with his idol.
At only 20 years old, you’ve already had a whirlwind career, since the release of your debut album, Épico, in 2019. Did you always want to be a musician? I read that you were a star athlete when you were young.
Yeah, I was really into soccer, and I also played volleyball. But at the same time, I was missing something. I would sing in front of my friends, showing off to them, and they would always encourage me, being like, “Papi, you really have to do this; you have to go into the studio.” And that’s how it all happened, gracias a Dios.
Are there any other artists or musicians in your family?
My dad and my brother were both drummers. I definitely followed in their footsteps and then just went my own way, creating everything that I wanted.
In 2014, you entered a freestyle competition where Daddy Yankee was the judge. Five years later, he appeared on the remix of your song “Soltera.”
I have a photo from that competition. I saw that he was hosting a contest, and you won a meet and greet with him. Like the dreamer kid that I was, I decided to do it, and I won, and I met him. And since then, the relationship that I’ve been able to create with him has been giant. Recently, I showed him the picture, and I said, “I told you, Yankee, that we were going to record together!”
Who’s your biggest inspiration?
Daddy Yankee. Thanks to him, I discovered what the world of reggaeton was, what the world of urbano was, and from there I started listening to other artists. I’m inspired by Bad Bunny, who’s also from Puerto Rico. I admire him, and I know lots of other musicians admire him as well—same with Anuel AA, Ozuna, and everyone who is involved with this genre. We keep learning from each other every day.
What’s your relationship with social media?
I’m always on there reading, tweeting, posting things, so people know that we’re always working. Right now, I’ve been away from it a little bit, because I’ve been working on new music and new projects, but I would never leave it completely.
Do you read the comments?
I read all the comments! Sometimes I wake up and look at DMs. I respond to a few if I feel like I need to respond. Fans are like friends; they play such an important role in your career. They decide if you are up, if you are down, so you always have to maintain a good relationship with them, because they’re like your band. They’re in your corner.