Carlos Vives Named Latin Recording Academy’s 2024 Person of the Year

Carlos Vives is set to receive the highest honor from the Latin Recording Academy.

Twenty-five years after leading the list of nominees for the first edition of the Latin Grammys, the 62-year-old Colombian singer, songwriter and actor has been named the 2024 Person of the Year.

Carlos VivesVives — winner of 18 Latin Grammy Awards, two Grammy Awards and a Billboard Latin Music Awards Hall of Fame inductee — “will be honored for his more than three-decade career as a multifaceted singer and composer, as well as for his continued commitment to environmental and social initiatives,” per the Latin Recording Academy.

“Carlos Vives is one of the most prolific and beloved artists of our time, whose commitment to Latin music and support for the new generations truly personifies the values of our Academy,” said Manuel Abud, CEO of The Latin Recording Academy. “We honor him as our Person of the Year for his vast contributions to our musical heritage and for his many philanthropic initiatives.”

“It’s still surprising to me,” Vives told Billboard Español this week in an exclusive interview. “It’s like a message that the Academy gives at the end, because 32 years ago I chose a path [that was unconventional]. To be successful, to be commercial, there was one way. This other path that’s cultural or has to do with your identity, that doesn’t work, [they would say].”

In Wednesday’s press release, he added: “I am honored and moved to have been chosen as the 2024 Latin Recording Academy Person of the Year. It is the reward for an authentic journey, for a wonderful team and, above all, it is the recognition of the musical spirits of our Latin American diversity. These spirits taught us to love and enrich our language, to take care of it and to respect it in order to exalt humanity with it.”

Born in Santa Marta, Colombia, Vives is one of the most respected artists in Spanish-language music and a pioneer of a new Latin American sound, redefining traditional Colombian vallenato by incorporating to it pop and rock sounds. With No. 1 hits on the Billboard charts such as “Volví a Nacer,” “Fruta Fresca” and “La Bicicleta” with Shakira, among others, has become an ambassador of Colombian and Latin American culture around the world.

His commitment to good causes transcends the musical realm. In 2015, he created the Tras La Perla initiative to promote the sustainable development of Santa Marta and its ecosystem. In addition, he created the Escuela de Música Río Grande to offer artistic experiences to children and young people, and founded the record label Gaira Música Local to promote new Colombian talent. He’s also been a strong advocate and generous supporter of the Latin Grammy Cultural Foundation since its inception, the Latin Recording Academy highlights, and sponsored its annual Prodigy Scholarship in 2018.

His latest album, Escalona: Nunca Se Había Grabado Así, earned him his 18th Latin Grammy when it was crowned best cumbia/vallenato album in 2023. This year he was also recognized with the ASCAP Founders Award from the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP).

Vives will be feted as Person of the Year at a special star-studded gala and tribute concert where an array of artist and friends will perform renditions of his renowned repertoire. Details of the event, to be presented in November during the 2024 Latin Grammy week in Miami, will be announced at a later date.

The Latin Recording Academy Person of the Year honors musicians and their artistic achievements in the Latin music industry as well as their humanitarian efforts.

Past honorees are Laura Pausini (2023), Marco Antonio Solís (2022), Rubén Blades (2021), Juanes (2019), Maná (2018), Alejandro Sanz (2017), Marc Anthony (2016), Roberto Carlos (2015), Joan Manuel Serrat (2014), Miguel Bosé (2013), Caetano Veloso (2012), Shakira (2011), Plácido Domingo (2010), Juan Gabriel (2009), Gloria Estefan (2008), Juan Luis Guerra (2007), Ricky Martin (2006), José José (2005), Carlos Santana (2004), Gilberto Gil (2003), Vicente Fernández (2002), Julio Iglesias (2001) and Emilio Estefan (2000).

Chayanne Releases New Tropical Single “Bailando Bachata”

Chayanne is in a bachata state of mind…

The 54-year-old Puerto Rican Latin pop singer and actor has returned to tropical music with “Bailando Bachata,” the third single from his highly-anticipated new album which debuts on Thursday, May 25 at 8:00 pm ET via Sony Music Latin.

ChayanneChayanne’s new single follows the previously released tracks:

reggaeton-pop single “Tú y Yo” and ballad “Te Amo y Punto.”

“I love the genre,” Chayanne told Billboard Español ahead of the bachata single’s premiere, noting that he has visited Santo Domingo countless times and that “anywhere in the world, when they play Caribbean music like salsa, merengue, bachata, one enjoys dancing to it very closely, so I am very excited.”

“How lucky I am that I can see you when I wake up every day/ And when I travel I miss you/ I have your photograph in my wallet”, begins the romantic Spanish-language song, co-written by Chayanne, Yasmil Marrufo, Andy Clay Cruz Felipe and Mario Alberto Cáceres Pacheco. “We are like the glass and the wine/ We go together since the moment we saw each other,” says part of the chorus.

Just as romantic is the music video, directed by Katherine Díaz and produced by Guacamaya Films.

Set in the 1970s, the clip stars Venezuelan actress and model Veronica Schneider. Upon arriving home, she lies down to watch her favorite series — starring Chayanne, of course — when she notices that the artist can see her from the screen.

“When I’m on TV, beware, because I’m watching you!”, he warns Billboard Español with a laugh.

“Bailando Bachata” is not Chayanne’s first foray into bachata — he “flirted” with the genre almost a decade ago with his pop-fusion song “Bailando Dos Corazonas.”

The new song, he explains, “is something more faithful, more complete, which makes me very excited.”

The 3-minute track is part of his forthcoming eight-song album. When asked if he’ll include any regional Mexican music — a genre currently enjoying significant global success — Chayanne couldn’t contain himself and revealed eagerly: “Yes! That too!”

“I started flirting with a lot of rhythms without leaving the backbone of pop,” he said. “But yes, the Mexican regional, you guessed right. There is also a song of that genre and it is beautiful”.

As for the release of his highly anticipated new set — his first studio album since 2014’s En Todo Estaré, which reached No. 1 on Billboard‘s Top Latin Albums chart — he said that he finished recording and hopes to make an announcement very soon. “Right now we are mastering, so it’s a matter of setting a date,” he says.

Rosalía Partnering with Coca Coca for Limited-Edition Flavor

Rosalía is officially a (soda) pop queen…

The 30-year-old Spanish Grammy-winning singer/songwriter has a new collaboration dropping with Coca-Cola later this month.

RosaliaThe beverage giant and the multi-platinum selling singer teamed up for a limited-edition Coca-Cola Creations flavor as part of the Coke Move campaign.

Rosalía co-created the flavor, which serves up a unique twist on the classic taste, at the Coca-Cola headquarters in Georgia.

“I went to Atlanta, and tried a thousand flavors and chose aromas,” she told Billboard Español. “The whole process of getting to the flavor that you are looking for is a lot of fun.”

“I gave in to the flavors that awakened something in me,” she added. “The ones that made me close my eyes when I tasted them and that seemed more delicious to me. It reminds me a lot of coconut, my favorite fruit, and one that I have always eaten since I was little.”

The Coca-Cola collaboration includes an exclusive track, “Lie Like You Love Me,” which was released on January 27.

Meanwhile, the special-edition Coke cans and bottles channel Rosalía’s lively personality, with vibrant colors and doodles hand-drawn by the singer. Additionally, fans will be able to scan a QR code on the collectible Coca-Cola Move can or bottle to access the digital Coca-Cola Creations Hub featuring exclusive, behind-the-scenes content from the making of “LLYLM” and more.

“Transformation as a means of self-expression is powerful and resonant for today’s generation, and music is the universal language for transformation” said Oana Vlad, Senior Director, Global Strategy at The Coca-Cola Company. “Partnering with the inspirational and genre-defying Rosalía to bring to life our latest drop under Coca-Cola Creations has been a blast and has broken new ground for Coca-Cola Creations. We hope our collective fans will love this drink!”

Fans will also get a chance to bid on Rosalía memorabilia, including an autographed helmet, tour outfit, poster and other collectibles.

Proceeds from the auction will support the Antonio Gala Foundation, a non-profit based in Rosalía’s home country of Spain that provides residency scholarships to young creators.

The new Coca-Cola Move flavor, available in cans and bottles, will be released in the U.S and in Canada on February 20.

Coca-Cola previously collaborated with DJ Marshmello on a limited-edition flavor last year. Aside from the signature flavor and limited-edition drops, Coca-Cola offers Coke vanillaCoke cherry and cherry vanilla.

Rosalía has a lot in the works. Besides the beverage collab, she will take the stage at Coachella, which kicks off April 14-16. This year’s festival will be headlined by Frank Ocean, Bad Bunny and BLACKPINK. Other names on the bill include Charlie XCX, Gorillaz, Burna Boy, The Chemical Brothers, Blondie, Becky G, Metro Boomin, Latto, Björk, Kali Uchis, Porter Robinson, Glorilla, Jai Paul and Jackson Wang.

Ludmilla Signs New Management Deal with WK Entertainment & Central Sonora

Ludmilla has a new management deal…

The 27-year-old Brazilian powerhouse singer-songwriter has signed with WK Entertainment and Central Sonora. The alliance arrives after she won a 2022 Latin Grammy for her album Numanice #2, and after making history as the first Afro-Latina artist to reach one billion streams on Spotify.

Ludmilla,“[This deal] is a very important step in my career,” Ludmilla tells Billboard Español. “WK Entertainment/Central Sonora, together with my company Sem Querer Produções, will add structure and they will assist in enhancing my musical work, which is my focus. I am very happy and excited about this partnership and I am sure it will yield many results.”

Together, the teams will work to further amplify Ludmilla’s global artistic development. Central to this growth is Central Sonora’s CEO Cesar Figueiredo, who is leading this new stage in the artist’s career. He’ll oversee all management functions of the project. Walter Kolm, who is the founder and CEO of WK Entertainment and WK Records, will also provide support while helping develop key relations for Ludmilla’s continued growth.

“Ludmilla reflects the true sonority that exists in Brazil today. She is ready to conquer the world by exploring our Brazilian culture,” Figueiredo said in a statement shared with Billboard Español. “Our alliance began a few years ago as a friendship and has since blossomed, giving us the opportunity to finally work together professionally. It is truly an honor for me as a manager to represent a highly regarded and iconic artist such as Ludmilla.”

“This is a phase in my career that is very diverse and different from anything I’ve ever done, a phase that accompanies my current state and the work I propose, which has 100 per cent my truth and [aligned with] my artistic vein,” the artist adds.

With her propulsive pop and funk formula, Ludmilla has become a force to be reckoned with in her native Brazil and beyond. And her ever-expanding fan base further testifies her rise to prominence — she currently has 28.8 million followers on Instagram and 10.5 million on Twitter. The singer-songwriter navigates stylistic configurations with ease, whether she’s soulfully singing an R&B ballad (“Quem é Você”), spitting some funky carioca bars (“Tic Tac”) or charming listeners with sweet samba songs (“Maldivas”). Her gritty trap features equally intrigue, like on “Tanto Faz.”

“I think of funk as an agent of change, especially in the lives of so many peripheral people who don’t have opportunities,” she says. “Funk embraces and elevates, it makes is claim our place in the world.”

Ludmilla is poised to drop her next singles “Sou Má,” featuring funk MCs Tasha and Tracie, as well as “Nasci Pra Vencer” on February 2. “The lyrics [to the latter trap song] tell my story, which is similar to the story of those who come from a place without [economic] gains, but with talent and hard work, we can reach places we never thought possible. It’s about me, but it’s also about others who I hope feel represented,” she says.

Last week, Billboard Español exclusively announced WK Record’s Brazilian operational expansion, which began quietly running last year. It will function to develop the careers of local talent with global appeal, while creating international opportunities for them.

“I am delighted to welcome Ludmilla to our family of artists and join her in this exciting new journey, in partnership with Central Sonora,” Kolm stated. “Our companies look forward to amplifying Ludmilla’s career around the world and to consolidate [her] position as one of Brazil’s top artists.”

Ludmilla is currently working on an eclectic album which, she mentions, will span genres like pop, R&B, funk, trap and more.

Tiago PZK Releases New Confessional Ballad “Bemaste”

Tiago PZK is making confessions..

The 21-year-old Argentine rapper and singer has released the confessional ballad “Bemaste” via Warner Music Latina and Grand Move Records.

Tiago PZKTiago PZK wears his heart on his sleeve on the track, which Billboard describes as “chilling.”

“Bemaste” reveals another side of trap star that feels extraordinarily intimate.

Its beautiful, stripped-down keys and lo-fi production set the stage for his honest lyricism as he candidly articulates what finding love and devotion can feel like, while navigating the all-consuming vortex of fame.

“I consider this song the first work of art of my career, conceptually and audio-visually, from the bottom of my heart,” Tiago PZK tells Billboard Español in an email. “I don’t have any expectations, because before I have one, I’m simply fulfilled to have created this song and what it means to me. Do not put barriers to love.”

The song will appear on his upcoming album Portales Deluxe.