Cash Money Records has officially announced the creation of a Latin music division with the launch of emerging artist Luis Armando, Billboard can reveal today (Nov. 18).
Cash Money was founded by brothers Bryan “Birdman” Williams and Ronald “Slim” Williams in 1992. The new Latin division is a joint venture with Taste Music Group and major label support from Republic Records.
“Urban Latin music is taking a similar course as we saw with Hip Hop during the 80s and 90s as it grew, evolved and fought to be accepted in the mainstream,” Slim tells Billboard.
“It’s not just reggaeton anymore, it’s now evolving its subgenres (such as Latin Trap) and making them popular culture. At Cash Money, we saw all that from the start in Hip Hop and we’re excited to adapt our lessons in helping develop Latin talent that also stands grounded in the Hip Hop world from day 1. With the guidance of various long-time Latin music experts such as Carlos Rivas, who is Cash Money’s Latin A&R, as well as our counterpart at Republic we’re excited to venture into this new space as a label.”
As one of Hip-Hop’s reputable record labels, Cash Money has been home to some of the industry’s biggest names including Drake, Lil’ Wayne, and Nicki Minaj. Now, the label thinks it can transfer its know-how to the Latin market.
“Slim and Baby have the ability to spot talent like no other, they’ve proven that for many years,” Vernon Brown, Cash Money’s long-time attorney, and business manager, tells Billboard. “There’s a big confidence and commitment behind anything they touch. I think the ability to now bring Latin artists and see the merge is only going to be a positive result for any artist.”
The Puerto Rican-born and Ohio-raised Luis Armando is the label’s first-ever recording Latin artist, making his debut with “Chica Mala” in collaboration with reggaeton veteran Ñengo Flow.
“We want our artists to be consistent, talented, and ready to work,” Slim says. “Someone who has that passion and drive and a vision of how great they want to be. If they’ve got that attitude, we’ll give it a shot. We believe in the new talents. Luis Armando is our first, but we’re excited to discover and help develop more talent as we move forward.”
The melodic urban fusions with tropical rhythms heard in “Chica Mala” puts Armando’s fresh musical proposal in the forefront. Watch the video below.