In the midst of a milestone year that saw him receive the Lifetime Achievement Award at the Billboard Latin Music Awards in April and celebrate five decades of recording in Spanish, Roberto Carlos will be honored as the 2015 Latin Recording Academy Person of the Year.
Carlos, the top-selling Brazilian and Latin American act of all time, will be honored the eve of the Latin Grammys at a star-studded tribute concert Wednesday, Nov. 18, at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center in Las Vegas. Proceeds from the gala will benefit the Latin Grammy Cultural Foundation.
Born in in the Southern municipality of Cachoeiro de Itapemirim to a watchmaker and a seamstress, Carlos began singing and taking music lessons at an early age. At 17, he moved to Rio de Janeiro and began singing nightly in clubs, devoting himself to the rock n’ roll of the day. By the early 1960s, signed to Columbia and aided by the TV show and musical movement Jovem Guarda (Young Guard), Carlos became a teen idol and began writing with his childhood friend and former bandmate Erasmo Carlos, still his main writing partner to this day. Instead of opting for bossa nova, the sophisticated Brazilian export for which his smooth, entreating voice is particularly well-suited for, they went for romantic pop, penning some of the most enduring compositions in the Latin American songbook. Translated to Spanish and married to the subtle beauty of Carlos’ voice, they became anthems for generations of listeners to this day.
Calos recently recorded his latest album — Roberto Carlos – Primera Fila — at London’s Abbey Road Studios. The set will be released later this year.
Previous recipients of the Recording Academy Person of the Year honor include Miguel Bosé, Plácido Domingo, Gloria Estefan, Vicente Fernández, Juan Luis Guerra, Carlos Santana, Joan Manuel Serrat, Shakira, Julio Iglesias and Caetano Veloso, among others.