Grammy 2016 Latin Nominees Largely Reflect 2015 Latin Grammy Wins & Noms

Alejandro Sanz
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Alejandro Sanz at the 2015 Latin Grammy Awards on Nov. 19, 2015 in Las Vegas.

After claiming Latin Grammy wins just last month, Natalia LaFourcade, Juan Luis Guerra, Alejandro Sanz, Ruben Blades and Alex Cuba, among many other artists, are returning for what could be an encore at the 2016 Grammy Awards.

The Grammy nominations in the Latin field took a big page out of the November Latin Grammys, with most of the nominees entering the competition with either a recently won Latin Grammy in hand, or a recent nomination.

The parallels are most striking in the best Latin pop album and best tropical album categories, where every single one of the five nominees was either a Latin Grammy winner or nominee last month.

In the best Latin pop album, three of the nominees -- Pablo Alborán’s exquisite Terral, Alejandro Sanz’s Sirope and Ricky Martin’s A quien quiera escuchar -- were Latin Grammy nominees in the best contemporary pop vocal album category, which Sanz won. Another contender, Alex Cuba, won best singer/songwriter album for Healer, while Julieta Venegas was a nominee for record and song of the year.

In the best tropical Latin album category, three of the nominees -- José Alberto El Canario, Ruben Blades with Roberto Delgado & his Orchestra and Juan Luis Guerra-were Latin Grammy winners. The other two -- Victor Manuelle and Guaco -- were nominees.

2015 Latin Grammy Winners

Even the whacky mélange of a category best Latin rock, urban or alternative album was largely déjà vu. LaFourcade, the big Latin Grammy winner, is there, as is best new artist winner Monsieur Periné and critical darling and Latin Grammy nominees Bomba Estéreo. Rounding off the group are two big surprises: little-known Nicaraguan dance band La cuneta son machin, and extremely well-known Pitbull, for Dale.

The one category that bears little resemblance to its Latin Grammy counterparts is the best regional Mexican music album, where one Latin Grammy winner -- Banda el Recodo de Don Cruz Lizárrag -- will battle against four non Latin Grammy nominees. They include two well known names and previous Grammy winners in Los Tigres del Norte (with Realidades) and Mariachi Los Camperos de Nati Cano. Also competing are norteño band La Maquinaria Norteña, up for their first Grammy, and Los Cojolites, a 20-year-old Mexican folk group with a niche following that is beloved by the Grammys; this is their second nomination.

Are the parallels between the two Grammy awards to be expected? We hope this will not always be the case. The fact that there are two Grammy awards available for Latin music should open doors, not close them. And yet, it’s impossible to imagine that the selection here wasn’t widely influenced by Latin Grammy results.

By representing music from every Spanish-speaking country as opposed to just U.S. releases (as is the case with the Grammys), the Latin Grammys has traditionally considered and represented a broader spectrum of Latin music.

Categories will sometimes bleed into each other of course. But by being more U.S. centric, the Grammys much better represented what was happening in this particular marketplace. That is not the case in this instance.  

Grammy Latin Field Nominees
Best Latin Pop Album
      Pablo Alborán
      [Warner Music Latina]

      Alex Cuba
      [Caracol Records]

A Quien Quiera Escuchar  (Deluxe Edition)
      Ricky Martin
      [Sony Music Latin]

      Alejandro Sanz
      [Universal Music Latino]

Algo Sucede
      Julieta Venegas
      [Sony Music Latin]

Best Latin Rock, Urban or Alternative Album
      Bomba  Estereo
      [Sony Music Latin]

      La Cuneta Son Machín
      [Round Whirled Records]

Hasta La Raíz
      Natalia Lafourcade
      [Sony Music Latin]

Caja De Música
      Monsieur Periné
      [Sony Music Entertainment]

      [Mr. 305 / Sony Music Latin]

Best Regional Mexican Music Album (Including Tejano)
Mi Vicio Mas Grande
      Banda El Recodo De Don Cruz Lizarraga

Ya Dime Adiós
      La Maquinaria Norteña

      Los Cojolites
      [Round Whirled Records]

Realidades - Deluxe Edition
      Los Tigres Del Norte

Tradición, Arte Y Pasión
      Mariachi Los Camperos De Nati Cano
      [Smithsonian Folkways Recordings]

Field 12 - Latin
Category 44 - Best Tropical Latin Album
(For albums containing at least 51 percent playing time of new tropical Latin recordings.)

Tributo A Los Compadres: No Quiero Llanto
      José Alberto "El Canario" & Septeto Santiaguero
      [Los Canarios Music]

• Son De Panamá
      Rubén Blades With Roberto Delgado & Orchestra
      [Ruben Blades Productions]

Presente Continuo
      [Latin Pulse / Sony Music Latin]

Todo Tiene Su Hora
      Juan Luis Guerra 4.40
      [Universal Music Latino/Capital Latin]

Que Suenen Los Tambores
      Victor Manuelle
      [Kiyavi / Sony Music Latin]