Alejandro Sanz has launched his first studio album in three years, "Paraíso Express" (Warner), in Madrid. It is released today (Nov. 10) in Latin America and the U.S., and will hit the markets in non-Spanish speaking countries in the first quarter of 2010.

Miami-based Sanz is still Spain's biggest-selling artist with 25 million worldwide sales, says Warner, 12 years after he set a record by moving more than 1 million physical units of his 1997 album "Más" in Spain in just one week.

In a recent Billboard magazine interview (Nov. 7), Sanz said "today, sales are not a reflection of success, [but] fortunately, ours is an industry that markets emotions, and this is an album that excites people."

So much so that as the presentation began, Warner Spain president Charlie Sánchez revealed that the album's first single "Looking For Paradise," recorded with Alicia Keys, is No. 1 on airplay charts in Spain, Mexico, Argentina, Chile, Colombia and Venezuela as well as being No. 1 on Billboard's Latin Pop Songs chart and Tropical Songs chart.

"Nowadays it's more important to use imagination and creativity in the process of selling music, and include your fans" through interactive online devices such as personal Web sites, says Sanz. "But that's mainly the industry job - my part is still making music and recording".

When asked about the rock elements of "Paraíso Expreso," Sanz says "people like Jimi Hendrix and Prince were our gurus years ago when symphonic rock was strong. The main element for me has always been flamenco, and this album is less Italian-sounding than my earlier albums."

Sánchez adds, "It's when an artist of this characteristic makes his eighth record sound so good, that you think 'wow, he's hot.'"

Sanz manager Rosa Lagarrigue of RLM confirmed at the presentation that the artist's 2010 world tour will start in Mexico in February, and pass through Spain in May.