Erika Ender: The First Latina Nominated for Song of the Year at the Grammys

Erika Ender’s name will be etched in music history…

When The Recording Academy unveiled this year’s official list of nominees, the 42-year-old Panamanian singer/songwriter became the first Latina up for song of the year in the history of the Grammys.

Erika Ender

Ender, who is celebrating her 25th anniversary as a performer this year, was preparing to perform alongside Roberto Carlos at an annual Christmas special in Rio de Janeiro, when she suddenly got a congratulatory tweet from the academy.

Born in Panama to a Brazilian mother and American father, Ender’s message to the world — should she take home the coveted gramophone for “Despacito” — is one of unity and perseverance.

“As I said in the Latin Grammys, it’s not about competing, it’s about sharing. We are several colleagues sharing as a dream team. Those who sing are obviously the face, but there are those of us who also write and produce, the people from behind who made it all possible — [it’s about] the importance of union through music.”

She continues: “Women are a minority, but any woman who is determined to achieve their dreams in an honest way, while persevering with their values ​​and talent — it’s what I have to exemplify at this time. [I have to] raise my voice and empower other women, because I am the only woman involved in what is happening right now.”

In the end, Ender would extend her gratitude to all who helped along the way to make “Despacito” what it is, “because the road is not done alone.”

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