Stories of success, failure and Bronx vernacular figured prominently in a candid Q&A with urban bachata superstars Aventura at the Billboard Latin Music Conference in San Juan, Puerto Rico, on Wednesday.

The quartet flew to the conference today after a concert in Venezuela, and return to that country tonight for another performance.

That jet-setting lifestyle was 14 years in the making. The group's modern urban take on the melancholy Dominican musical style of bachata was initially met with confusion and resistance from labels and even leader Anthony "Romeo" Santos' own family members, the singer/songwriter told a packed house at the Conrad San Juan Condado Plaza.

"They said it was bubblegum, not bachata," said Santos, flanked by his bandmates Lenny Santos, Henry Santos Jeter and Max "Mickey" Agende Santos. "There was a lot of criticism," he said. "We made four songs ... and we took them to a label. They told us, this won't work."

But after Aventura's song "Obsesion" went to No. 1 on Billboard's Euro charts, U.S. exposure continued to build, initially in the group's base of New York City.

The band expressed no desire to leave their indie label, Premium Latin, even after making it big. "When you have a winning formula, when you're successful, why fix it if [it's not] broken? We are their babies and we like that, we love that," said Romeo of the Sony-distributed label.

Major distribution, however, has opened up the band to markets all over the world, particularly in Latin America. "Before without Sony, Premium as an indie had more trouble making sure the albums hit everywhere at the same time. Now we're global in one shot," Henry Santos said.

Romeo estimated that 85% of his U.S. fans were bilingual. "I love playing in the United States because I can be just as I am. I talk to [the audience] as I talk at home," he said.

Turning to Max, Romeo complimented his bandmate's sunglasses and added, "So nasty!" -- a tagline heard in Aventura's music that is Bronx slang for "cool."

Romeo said he'd be more interested in duetting with Justin Timberlake and Usher on a bachata album rather than record in English. "I want them to enter my world," he said.