It was a huge night for many Latin music artists during the Sept. 23 Billboard Latin Music Awards which aired on Telemundo. Puerto Rican rapper Bad Bunny (born Benito Antonio Martínez Ocasio) was the top winner of the night with 10 awards, including overall Artist of the Year. The recognition comes after the massive success of his album YHLQMDLG which won the Top Latin Album of the Year and Top Latin Albums Artist of the Year, Male. What makes it even more of an amazing win is that he won against his own El Ultimo Tour del Mundo and Las Que No Iban a Salir albums. The mega-successful track “Dákiti” with Jhay Cortez, won Hot Latin Song of the year; Hot Latin Song of the year, vocal event; and streaming song of the year.
“Thanks always to all the audience for all the support, for supporting the music we make, thanks to all those who worked on this anthem,” El Conejo Malo said after receiving the Hot Latin Song award. “Thank you for always being there for us. You are the ones who give us this award.” The event took place at Watsco Center in Coral Gables, Fla.
Meanwhile, Colombian singer Karol G swept many of the awards for female performers, including Hot Latin Songs artist of the year, Female, and Top Latin Albums Artist of the Year, Female for her recently released album KG0516. “Me siento bien sessiiiiiii, bien ricota y bien feliz !!!! 🖤🖤🖤 Los Amo pues !!!!!!!!!!!!!!” she shared on Instagram last night.
Maná, the legendary Mexican rock group originally formed in Guadalajara, Jalisco in 1986, received the Billboard Icon Award for their contributions to music over their 35-year career. They also performed a cover of the classic song “El Reloj Cucú” featuring a special performance from 12-year-old up-and-coming artist Mabel. “It’s been a while since we’ve been in front of an audience,” lead singer Fher Olvera said. “We’ve had a lot of fun and we’ve delivered songs that come from the heart.” They’ve sold more than 40 million albums worldwide and have more than 30 songs on Billboard’s Hot Latin Songs including the classic “Labios Compartidos”.
Industry veteran and Mexican singer Paquita la del Barrio was also honored last night, receiving Billboard’s Lifetime Achievement Award before performing her famous hits “Rata de dos patas” and “El Consejo” alongside fellow Mexican singer Ana Bárbara. In one of the most memorable moments of the night, Bad Bunny helped Paquita with the mic during her speech and she uttered her famous line, “Eres un inútil.”
Daddy Yankee, the “King of Reggaetón” himself, also made history with his Billboard Hall of Fame win, becoming the first-ever urban artist recipient honoring his twenty years in music.
Other notable wins included Artist of the Year, New for Puerto Rican rapper Myke Towers; Crossover of the Year for Black Eyed Peas; Hot Latin Songs Artist of the Year, Duo or Group for Banda MS de Sergio Lizárraga; Latin Airplay Song of the Year for Maluma & The Weeknd, “Hawái”; Latin Pop Artist of the Year, Solo for Shakira; Tropical Artist of the Year, Duo or Group for Aventura; and Tropical Albums of the Year for Prince Royce and his record Alter Ego.
Besides the awards, the red carpet also made a splash with Bad Bunny attending with his girlfriend Gabriela Berlingeri, Dominican rapper Tokischa showed up in a nude colored outfit with a matching headpiece, and Camila Cabello who showed up in a red mini dress. The 24-year-old Cuban-born singer made headlines after dedicating her performance of the hit, “Don’t Go Yet” from her upcoming album Familia to her homeland ending it with “patria y vida”, the phrase used by protesters.