Perla Batalla

Perla Batalla is a Grammy-nominated vocalist, composer and arranger who first gained international attention as a backup singer for Leonard Cohen before embarking on a solo career at the latter’s encouragement.

Of Mexican ancestry, Batalla was born in Los Angeles. Her father was a mariachi musician and owned a popular Spanish language record store. Her mother is from South America.

Batalla released her debut CD, Perla Batalla, on the Warner/Discovery label to great critical success.

Like many original artists, Batalla opted to go independent early on, releasing her second album, “Mestiza” (meaning of mixed blood) on her own Mechuda Music label. “Heaven and Earth” followed, completing the Mestiza song-cycle. Both CDs were co-written with David Batteau. They offer a vision of a vibrant culture still nourished and inhabited by mysticism, imagery, magic and myth. Amazon named Mestiza Best Independent Release of the year.

Batalla’s concert film appearances in Hal Wilner’s Cohen tribute, “I’m Your Man”, and featured a cast that included Rufus Wainwright, Nick Cave, Beth Orton, Antony, and Teddy and Linda Thompson. The Spanish film Acordes con Leonard Cohen had Perla sharing the stage in Barcelona with Jackson Browne and John Cale. Batalla has worked on the other side of the camera as well, arranging and musical directing comedic vocal scenes for Will Ferrell’s “Stepbrothers”. Ms. Batalla has also been brought in as a hired gun by the studios as vocal coach/miracle worker for a various actors, including Jeremy Piven of HBO’s Entourage.

Batalla’s mission of honoring her roots and exposing young audiences to the beauty of music and the Spanish language is ongoing in her outreach endeavors throughout some of the under-served communities in the US. She received the United Nations Earth Charter Award for extraordinary devotion to social and economic justice. She is also the recipient of Border Book Festivals’, Premio Fronterizo Award for healing work in the world.


Perla Batalla (1993)
Mestiza (1999)
Heaven and Earth (2000)
Discoteca Batalla (2002)
Gracias a la Vida (2004)
Bird On The Wire: The Songs Of Leonard Cohen (2007)
Love is Everything (2014)

Selected Appearances

World Festival of Sacred Music – the Americas, Los Angeles (2000)
Selected Artists: World Festival of Sacred Music – Los Angeles (2002)
The Napa Valley Opera House – Napa, CA (2003)
Univ of Hawaii, Manoa, HI (2003)
Prospect Park – Brooklyn, NY (2003)
Philadelphia Museum of Art (2003)
The Getty Center – L.A., CA (2003)
The Knitting Factory – NYC (2004)
Joe’s Pub – NYC (2004)
Satalla – NYC (2004)
The Brighton Dome – Brighton England (2004)
The Kennedy Center – Washington, D.C. (2004)
UCLA, Royce Hall – Los Angeles (2004)
Riverside Municipal Auditorium – (w/Los Lobos) (2004)
Big Top Chautauqua – Bayfield Wisconsin (2004)
The Hothouse – Chicago, Illinois (2004)
The Sydney Opera House – Sydney Australia (2006)
L.A. County Museum of Art (2006)
Leonard Cohen: I’m Your Man OST (2006)
The Broad Stage – Santa Monica, CA (2017)

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