The Latin Grammy green carpet was canceled, but there was plenty of action behind the scenes. We were inside the Mandalay Bay Center (Nov. 21) with a front row to the stars, the music and all the things that did not make the live broadcast.
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Draco Rosa, who won for album of the year, said that after beating cancer he feels that this part of his life is very special because he’s alive and able to be with family. “So many things have happened … to be able to connect with the audience has been magical.”
Sibling duo Jesse & Joy are working on their first English-language album. But for the Mexican brother and sister it’s not a leap as their father is American and they’re fully bilingual. The set, says Jesse, will include a song dedicated to daughter Hanna. But before that English album sees the light, the sibling act are set to release a Spanish-language album next year.
The rain shut down the green carpet but fans lined outside were complaining so vociferously that some artists took the time to brave the elements to greet them. Among them was Carlos Vives who had to change out of his wet clothes backstage. Another artist who took the time to greet fans was Yandel, one half of the former Wisin y Yandel. The problem? Many fans yelled “Wisin, Wisin!” “I’m used to it,” says Yandel with a laugh. “They call him Yandel all the time as well.”
Best urban song prize went to Argentinean duo Illya Kuryaki and the Valderramas for “Ula Ula,” a song that was chosen as the theme of a Target commercial this summer. The duo, who hadn’t recorded for several years, did an impromptu rendition of the song backstage at the media room and said they were jazzed that Oprah gave them a shout out on Twitter.
Spanish-American actress/singer Charo (yes that Charo!) came backstage to talk about her new projects and career. She entered the media not once, but twice. Armed with her quick wit and charm, the entertainer won over the room.
Natalie Cole, who was nominated for album of the year for her “Natalie Cole en Español” said she’s the first Anglo American to be nominated for a Spanish-language set. The singer said she was thrilled to sing in Spanish like her father Nat King Cole—who inspired his daughter as a child when he would play her music in Spanish.
Colombian singer Carlos Vives said he was glad to be back in the spotlight after not recording music for nearly a decade. “There were many sentimental doubts,” Vives said, adding that if he won tonight he would have to thank many people including the people of Colombia and those who came before him. “It’s an important time for Colombian’s in music.”
Italian diva Laura Pausini will kick off her world tour in December. For the first time, she says, she’ll be accompanied by a 25-piece band. The tour design will be courtesy of Giorgio Armani, who also designed Pausini wardrobe, including the white tux she wore Thursday night.
Robi Rosa is a self-described fashionista who loves beautiful clothes. Backstage he wore a Jill Sanders blazer. “But I also love Alexander McQueen and Vivian Westwood.” As for his Grammy for album of the year, he dedicated it, after recovering from cancer, “to the privilege of being alive.”
Colombia’s Andres Cepeda won the Latin Grammy for best traditional vocal pop album. But Cepeda wasn’t at the ceremony because the day he was traveling from his native country he lost his passport while at the airport. Cepeda was not allowed to board the plane.