Luis Vázquez Becomes Youngest Soloist to Top Billboard’s Tropical Airplay Chart with “Tu Fan”

He may not be old enough to drive, but Luis Vázquez is already making a splash in the music world…

The 15-year-old Puerto Rican singer has notched his first No. 1 on Billboard’s Tropical Airplay chart as “Tu Fan” rises 3-1 on the July 3-dated survey.

Luis Vázquez

At 15, Vázquez becomes the youngest soloist to arrive at the summit since the chart began in October 1994. He beats out previous record-holder Leslie Grace, who was 17 when “Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow” topped the chart in October 2012.

“I’m beyond happy that at the beginning of my career I already have a No. 1 on the Tropical Airplay chart,” Vázquez tells Billboard. “Thankful to God for helping me achieve this dream with my first song and to my family for all the support and love. Grateful also to the public who has supported the song from the beginning and to my second family, JAK Entertainment.”

“Tu Fan” tops the chart with 3.8 million in audience impressions earned in the week ending June 27, up 39%, according to MRC Data. The song is Vázquez’s first entry on any Billboard chart.

“We, at JAK Capitol, are extremely proud of Luis’ great achievement!“ Andy Martinez, CEO, JAK Entertainment tells Billboard. ‘We believe in his talent and our mission is to continue working hard so the tropical genre sees more young talent.”

As it lands atop the summit, “Tu Fan” joins a list of five other tracks that have topped the Tropical Airplay chart in 2021.

Song, Artist, Debut/ Peak Date
“De Vuelta Pa’ La Vuelta,” Daddy Yankee & Mark Anthony, Jan. 2
“Travesuras,” Nio García, Casper Mágico, Ozuna, Wisin & Yandel, Myke Towers, Flow La Movie, March 6
“Un Amor Eterno,” Marc Anthony, March 20
“Víctimas Las Dos,” Victor Manuelle & La India, May 29
“Si Supieras,” Prince Royce, June 5
“Tu Fan,” Luis Vázquez, July 3

“I’m super excited for this No. 1 because from the beginning this project sounded incredible and ambitious with a great artist who exceeded my expectations even at such a young age,” Juan Miguel, the song’s producer, tells Billboard. “I am sure that Luis will be a salsa icon and I will be very happy in the future to have been part of his history.”

Beyond its Latin Airplay coronation, “Tu Fan” also sees progress on the all-genre Latin Airplay chart, where the track advances 41-32.

“Tu Fan” is part of Vázquez’s debut studio album, Comienzos. The eight-track set, released February 12, debuted and peaked at No. 17 on the Tropical Albums chart.

Daddy Yankee Teams Up with Marc Anthony for Salsa Single “De Vuelta Pa’ La Vuelta”

Daddy Yankee is getting into the swing of it…

The 43-year-old Puerto Rican reggaetonero has joined voices with Daddy Yankee on the salsa single “De Vuelta Pa’ La Vuelta.”

Daddy Yankee x Marc Anthony

Anthony, known as the King of Salsa, cedes the opening spotlight to Daddy Yankee, whose voice is well-suited for a traditional salsa track.

The made-for-dancing insta-classic, which, in vintage Marc Anthony style, begins with a slow intro that then breaks into an uptempo dance beat, pairs two icons who unexpectedly meet each other halfway.

Sergio George produced the track, a fusion of two very different distinct voices with a deep respect for the genre that will no doubt give an infusion of energy to the tropical charts.

Amazon Music Launches Amazon Music LAT!N Hub, Featuring Exclusive Music, Videos & More From Artists Like Natanael Cano

Natanael Cano has found a new connection

Amazon Music is putting a big focus on Latin music with the launch of “Amazon Music LAT!N,” featuring the 19-year-old Mexican singer in a new editorial video series, Género101,

Natanael Cano

The Latin music brand features a broad umbrella that includes over 100 new and revamped playlists, an emerging artist program, merchandise, video and multiple catalog programs among many other initiatives.

Using the tagline “La Musica que nos conecta” — a reference to the fact that Latinos come from many countries and cultures but are connected by music and language — the LAT!N hub, which includes music in Spanish and Portuguese, will live within Amazon at amazon.com/latinmusic.

It seeks to establish Amazon as a major player in Latin music streaming and content, as well as retail.

“The big differentiator [with other streaming services] is the ability to work cross functionally with the other Amazon verticals and services like Twitch and Prime Video,” explains Rocío Guerrero, who assumed the newly created position of global head of Latin music at Amazon in January.

“We can do things 360. It’s unparalleled and it will live within the Amazon.com ecosystem.”

Prior to Guerrero’s arrival, Amazon Music had been relatively perfunctory with its approach to Latin music, offering playlists and a big catalog but little else. Latin content was hardly ever marketed  The launch of LAT!N marks a major investment and commitment to the music.

“What they want is to expand with even more audiences and fans and engage them with Latin music,” Guerrero says. A major thrust is positioning Amazon as a destination that focuses not only on reggaetón and urban music, which dominate the major Latin playlists around the world, but on all genres of Latin music, aiming for Amazon’s “broader” — as Guerrero calls it — audience, including older listeners.

“For instance, genres like bachata, salsa and Regional Mexican are big in Amazon Music,” she says. “We have a spotlight now. And we can shine a light on all the genres of Latin music.”

Guerrero came to Amazon from Warner Music Latin, but previously spent years overseeing U.S. Latin content in Spotify. Since joining Amazon in late 2019 she has expanded the Latin music global team, hiring Ana Martinez as label relations and Cristina Martin to head marketing for Latin music global and retaining Amaya Mendizabal as senior music curator.

After planning for the first half of the year, the official LAT!N kickoff features an original, acoustic version of Maluma’s global hit “Hawái.” It will be followed by exclusive weekly releases of new renditions by Karol G, Christian Nodal and Romeo Santos during Hispanic Heritage Month, with more planned moving forward.

At the same time, a catalog program called “Raices” will kick off with a spotlight on Marc Anthony that includes a mini documentary shot in his home, and will highlight Latin catalog content on a monthly basis. Likewise, an emerging artist program, “Rompe,” which is similar to Amazon’s “Breakthrough” program in the U.K., will highlight a local emerging artist every month, beginning with Colombia’s Las Villa and Interscope artist Nobeat.

New content will go beyond music to include five new editorial video series, available in English and Spanish. The first, Género101, will highlight different sub-genres of Latin music, beginning with an episode on corridos tumbaos explained by Natanael Cano. An Alexa component is also in development that will allow listeners to ask their virtual assistant questions and get replies in different artists’ voices.

The core of LAT!N, of course, will continue to be playlists — now expanded to 100 — including Latin global hits playlist Platino (formerly titled Fuego Latino), new music playlist Hoy, and a Clásicos playlist that features classics for each genre. Says Guerrero: “We cannot commit to just one audience only.”

Marc Anthony’s “3.0” Becomes First-Ever Salsa Album to Earn RIAA’s Diamante Certification

Marc Anthony is shining bright like a diamond…

The 52-year-old Puerto Rican Grammy-winning singer/songwriter, the best-selling tropical salsa artist of all time, has earned a spot in the annals of music history with his 2013 album 3.0, which at the time was his first salsa album in a decade.

Marc Anthony

The album, which was considered a risky release at the time with tropical music beginning to fade in popularity due to the resurgence of reggaeton, has became the first salsa album ever to be certified “Diamante,” the RIAA’s highest certification for a Latin album, for shipments of over 600,000 copies in the U.S. alone.

Anthony announced the major accomplishment on his Instagram page, posting a slideshow of photos that feature him cozying up to the Diamond plaque and grinning from ear to ear.

“Wow 3.0 First Salsa album ever to reach Diamond Status,” Anthony wrote in his caption. “Thanks to my team and everyone that worked on the album y Gracias a mis fans por siempre apoyar mi música y hacer este uno de sus favoritos. God bless!”

This major milestone for the project is only its latest accomplishment.

In 2013, 3.0 became the top-selling release of the year, according to Nielsen SoundScan. The hit single from the album, “Vivir Mi Vida,” also spent 18 weeks at No. 1 on the Hot Latin Songs chart, becoming the first tropical single in a decade to top the chart and the longest-running No. 1 tropical song in the history of the chart.

“It’s a huge honor for us at Sony Music Latin to work with Marc,” Sony Music Latin Iberia Chairman and CEO Afo Verde said as he presented Marc Anthony his RIAA Diamante plaque in a virtual ceremony. “He continues to break records time and time again and creates new ones all on his own. His music is forever. He’s proven that his recordings, from birth and even five, 10, 20 years later, are everlasting and will be sung by everyone for a lifetime.”

Anthony also talked about the milestone, revealing the confidence boost the success of the project gave him all those years ago.

“The arrival of this new achievement in this particular time is truly gratifying and inspiring for me,” Marc said. “3.0 was an album that I considered risky at the time of its release. The Latin music industry was beginning to shift and the main attention was going to other genres. The album was embraced by everyone in such a powerful way. That response gave a boost of reassurance in my career and my instincts as a music creator.”

With this accomplishment under his belt, Anthony is now working on new music.

Leila Cobo to Release New Book Offering Inside Look into the Latin Music Industry

Leila Cobo is doing some decoding…

The Colombian journalist/writer, a vice president at Billboard, will release a new book next year with Penguin Random House titled Decoding Latino: The Real Story of Latin Music.

Leila Cobo

The book will offer an insider’s view into the Latin music industry, tracking the stories behind 15 of the biggest hits of the past 50 years featuring some of the biggest names in music, including Emilioand Gloria EstefanEnrique IglesiasJ Balvinand Luis Fonsi, among others. 

“Bringing to life these stories and these songs is an honor and a pleasure,” said Cobo, who is also a classically trained pianist. “We’ve had so much fun reliving the making of these landmark songs.”

Decoding Latino will also explore areas such as the birth of Salsa, which was bred on the streets of Spanish Harlem, as well as Puerto Rican reggaetonand the bilingual chart-toppers making history. 

It will be published in English and Spanish, and will also be available as an audio book. 

Cobo, who has previously written four books in addition to co-writing the 2017 memoir Una Vida with recording artist Ednita Nazario, is Billboard‘s chief Latin music expert, writer and editor who has secured some of the magazine’s most iconic cover stories highlighting names like pop star Jennifer Lopez, urban king Ozuna and the recent cover story featuring Spain’s flamenco-inspired hip-hip artist Rosalía, who this month was celebrated at Billboard’s 14th annual Women in Music event for her contributions to female empowerment.

Previously, Cobo published two novels with Grand Central Publishing/Hatchette Book Group, which were translated to German, Italian and have won multiple awards. The Second Time We Met, Cobo’s 2012 novel, won the Latino Book Award for best popular fiction and was chosen as one of the top summer reads by MSN and Latina

Cobo’s biography on the late Jenni Rivera (Penguin Random House) stayed on the U.S. top 10 list of most-sold books in Spanish for more than 25 consecutive weeks. The book on the Diva of Banda music was named a top-read by several publications, including People en Español.

Levy to Star Opposite Jada Pinkett-Smith in “Salsa”

Sure, he competed on Dancing with the Stars… But this time William Levy will be dancing with a star.

The 32-year-old Cuban American actor and telenovela star has signed on to co-star opposite Jada Pinkett-Smith in Salsa, which the actress will also produce.

William Levy

Levy, the star of the popular telenovela Triunfo del Amor, will portray Pinkett-Smith’s salsa teacher in the film that tells the story of a woman at a turning point in her life. Through the dance of salsa she begins to get her life back on track.

Pinkett-Smith and Miguel Melendez will produce for Overbrook Entertainment, with production set to begin in the first quarter of 2014.

Levy recently wrapped two Lionsgate films: Addicted and Tyler Perry’s Single Moms Club. He’s currently shooting the remake of La Tormenta–called La Tempestad–for Univision.