Latin Hitmaker, the Billboard podcast that interviews top Latin music executives, returns for a limited second season devoted to Latin female executives. The launch episode features Luana Pagani, president of management and promotion company Seitrack US, which is part of giant OCESA Seitrack.
Pagani – a dynamo with a recognizable laugh who was born in Spain to an Italian father and an Argentine mother–for years was the senior vp of global marketing, Latin, for Sony and a central figure in the development of superstars like Shakira, Ricky Martin and Chayanne, at the height of the first “Latin explosion” of the late 1990s and early 2000s.
Now, in her new role, she’s living a second Latin explosion, working with successful outliers like Los Angeles Azules, exciting pop acts like Mexican duo Ha*Ash and superstars like Alejandro Fernández.
The successful transition from major to indie –which is not easy to do and has proven a challenge for many in the industry—is due in part to what Pagani calls being a little obsessive.
“We’re a management and booking agency, so when we have a tour on, I personally look at the ticket count in every city, every day. I speak with the promoter, I oversee the marketing city by city, obviously check radio in every city and I read the Spotify, Amazon, Pandora analytics every single day,” she says.
The obsessiveness was born from her first jobs at Sony, where she was in charge of creating label copies, a tedious, but essential job.
“It was my first job so truth is, I learned the importance of the label copy –giving the proper credit to the proper person so they can collect– which is something few people understand,” she says.
A major highlight in her Sony days was working with a brand new, and revolutionary, Colombian artist called Shakira on her 1998 breakout album Dónde Están los Ladrones.
“We knew it was an important moment, and I clearly remember when she played the album for us the first time, and presented each song with an excitement that we all felt as well. We didn’t know it would be su huge, of course, but that’s what we worked towards.”
As far as her secret power and management style, her staff calls it the “Pagani, Passive Pressure.” “It’s, ‘I know it’s 11 pm and I don’t expect you to answer me now, but, it’s urgent!”
Check out the full interview here, or on most podcast streaming platforms: