The world knows it and the Latin Grammys confirmed it: “Despacito” is a global musical giant and the track was rewarded multiple times at the 18th edition of the awards show on Thursday night (Oct. 16).
Upbeat and catchy, Luis Fonsi's “Despacito” has transcended language, borders and cultures since its release early this year. The song took top Latin Grammys including best song of the year, best record of the year, best urban album fusion/performance and best short form video.
“Viva Puerto Rico,” said Fonsi during one of his turns on stage at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas. “This award is for everyone and especially for those not necessarily recognized during these awards such as the engineers.”
One notable upset was “Residente” not taking album of the year, which instead went to Rubén Blades for Salsa Big Band.
“I feel bad when one person wins,” Blades said during his emotional acceptance speech, as he dedicated the win to his native Panama. "You don’t want people to lose.”
Backstage, some members of the press repeatedly asked Fonsi about the possibility that he and Daddy Yankee had a beef because Yankee did not attend the awards show to perform with him. But he quickly put a stop to those rumors. “There’s no problem,” said Fonsi, alluding to other rumors surrounding another "Despacito" collaborator, Justin Bieber. "They are my brothers and without them I would not have accomplished this.”
Best new artist winner Vicente Garcia, who hails from the Dominican Republic, was thrilled to have taken prizes for best tropical song and best singer/songwriter for the album A La Mar. “I was really not expecting this,” Garcia said during his time in the media center. “I was just happy with the nominations.”
They perform as Calle 13, but Visitante and Residente each won individual awards during the pre-telecast for best urban album and producer of the year, respectively. (Residente also later won for best urban song, “Somos Anormales”)
“It’s a very special day,” Visitante said as he received his award. “I want to thank all those maestros who have taught us lessons and told us their stories. This has been an incredible year.”