Alex Gallardo, VP A&R, Sony Music Latin: We searched for two things: artists Carlos would feel comfortable with and songs. We put together a presentation, and when we played a track, he'd ask for his iPod X -- he has a bunch loaded with songs. For example, there's a Cesaria Evora song he loves. When we suggested Gloria Estefan, he said, "I have the song." Each song had its story.
Clive Davis, chief creative officer, Sony Music Entertainment: We considered a concert in Rio de Janeiro. And when the conversation turned to Mexico, returning to Carlos' roots, we determined that it would be a studio album in conjunction with a meaningful live date.
Billboard 2014 Year in Music: See All of Our Coverage Here!
Fernando Cabral, senior VP marketing for Latin America/Iberia, Sony: Right off the bat, we discussed the partners, and that's how we got support from Mexico's tourism board and HBO [which aired the special].
Tom Corson, president/COO, RCA: It was the first time we've done something so consciously [between the Latin and mainstream companies]. When I got the Juanes track, I thought, "This is going to be huge."
Santana Debuts At No. 1 On Top Latin Albums Chart
Santana: The guests recorded in the studio with me. We were cooking at the same stove at the same time, together.
2014's No. 1's: J Balvin & Farruko | Idina Menzel & the 'Frozen' Soundtrack | Tove Lo, Kiesza, & Nick Jonas | Taylor Swift | Barbra Streisand | Weird Al Yankovic | Ed Sheeran & Charli XCX | Nicki Minaj | 'Guardians of the Galaxy' Soundtrack | Enrique Iglesias | Kacey Musgraves | Santana | Sam Smith | Iggy Azalea | Jason Derulo | Meghan Trainor, Nico & Vinz
This article first appeared in the Dec. 20 issue of Billboard.