Alejandro Sanz Leads Latin Grammy Nominations With 8 Nods, Rosalia Has 5

2:29 PM 9/24/2019

by Leila Cobo, Billboard

The awards show will air live Nov. 14 from Las Vegas’ MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas on Univision.

Alejandro Sanz and Rosalía
Alejandro Sanz and Rosalía
Juan Naharro Gimenez/Getty Images; David M. Benett/Getty Images

Alejandro Sanz, who has unwaveringly stayed the path of the singer/songwriter with gravitas, pathos and melodies, even in the face of urban trends and single releases, is the top artist nominee for the 20th annual Latin Grammy Awards.

Sanz is up for eight awards, including album of the year and best contemporary pop vocal album, for #Eldisco (#Thealbum). Ironically, Sanz gave it that name, he told Billboard earlier this year, "because it's almost an endangered species."

Aside from the album itself, two of its tracks -- "No Tengo Nada" and "Mi Persona Favorita" (featuring Camila Cabello) -- are competing against each other in the song and record of the year categories.

In terms of sheer number of nominations, Sanz's closest competition is fellow Spaniard Rosalía, up for five awards. Rosalía's groundbreaking flamenco set El Mal Querer will go head to head against Sanz, her countryman and advocate (Rosalía sang at Sanz's Person of the Year tribute in 2017) in the album of the year and best contemporary pop vocal album categories.

Rosalía also has three separate singles, only one of them from her album, competing in different categories: "Aute Couture," is up for record of the year; "Con Altura" with J Balvin, and featuring El Guincho, is up for best urban song; and "Pienso en tu Mirá" (from El Mal Querer) is up for best pop song. Surprisingly, none of Rosalía's stunning videos garnered nominations, but El Mal Querer is up for best engineered album and best recording package. El Guincho, Rosalía's co producer, is also up for five awards.

Rosalía is most certainly an outlier in terms of genre definitions and also in terms of nominations that skewed pop and alternative, with urban totally absent from the main categories (save for Rosalía's genre-bending fare). It almost felt as a rebuke against a global trend that has seen Latin urban music in all its forms gather record-breaking views on YouTube, streams on Spotify and Apple and positions on the Billboard charts.

Instead, artists like Bad Bunny (with two nominations), Ozuna and Daddy Yankee (with only one each), were found only in the urban categories. The most nods in the urban/reggaeton realm went to newcomer Sech, with three, including his multi-artist "Otro Trago," which competes in the best urban song category against Ozuna ("Baila Baila"), ChocQuibtown's "Pa Olvidarte"; Rosalía and J Balvin's "Con Altura"; and De La Ghetto's "Caliente" featuring J Balvin.

Following Rosalía, veterans Juan Luis Guerra, Fonseca and Andrés Calamaro are up for four awards each, as is percussionist and bandleader Tony Succar. All have nominations in the main categories, with Fonseca, Calamaro and Succar all vying for album of the year. Meanwhile, Guerra’s delightfully sexy "Kitipún," a slow bachata with jazz undertones, is up for song and record of the year.

Beyond the artists, sound engineer Jaycen Joshua is up for eight awards for his work mixing tracks and albums for a wide array of artists, including Juanes, Rosalía, Luis Fonsi and Sebastian Yatra. Mastering engineer David Kutch is up for six awards, as are producers Andres Torres, Mauricio Rengifo and Julio Reyes Copello, all up for producer of the year (with Torres and Rengifo competing as a team).

As for the urbanos, they were also absent from the producer of the year category. And in video of the year, the representation came in the form of social commentary from Brazil (via Criolo’s “Boca du Lobo,” a harrowing look at Brazil's societal crisis) and Spain (with rapper Nach’s “Los Zurdos Vienen Antes”).

As ever, the best new artist category is exciting. This year, it includes Argentine trap star Paulo Londra; Colombian rising star Greeicy; and Nella, a Venezuelan jazz singer from Berklee College of Music.

Nominations to The Latin Grammys were selected from approximately 15,500 submissions across 50 categories, of recordings released during the eligibility period (June 1, 2018 through May 31, 2019).

The Latin Grammys will air live Nov. 14 from Las Vegas’ MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas on Univision.

A partial list of nominees is below.

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  • Record of the Year

    WINNER "Mi Persona Favorita" — Alejandro Sanz & Camila Cabello
    "Parecen Viernes" — Marc Anthony
    "Verdades Afiladas" — Andrés Calamaro
    "Ahí Ahí" — Vicente García
    "Kitipun" — Juan Luis Guerra 4.40
    "Querer Mejor" — Juanes Featuring Alessia Cara
    "La Plata" — Juanes Featuring Lalo Ebratt
    "Aute Couture" — Rosalía
    "No Tengo Nada" — Alejandro Sanz
    "Cobarde" — Ximena Sariñana

  • Song of the Year

    WINNER "Calma" — Pedro Capó, Gabriel Edgar González Pérez & George Noriega, songwriters (Pedro Capó)
    "Desconstrução" — Tiago Iorc, songwriter (Tiago Iorc)
    "El País" — Rubén Blades, songwriter (Rubén Blades)
    "Kitipun" — Juan Luis Guerra, songwriter (Juan Luis Guerra 4.40)
    "Mi Persona Favorita" — Camila Cabello & Alejandro Sanz, songwriters (Alejandro Sanz & Camila Cabello)
    "No Tengo Nada" — Alejandro Sanz, songwriter (Alejandro Sanz)
    "Quédate" — Kany García & Tommy Torres, songwriters (Kany García & Tommy Torres)
    "Querer Mejor" — Rafael Arcaute, Alessia Cara, Camilo Echeverry, Juanes, Mauricio Montaner, Ricardo Montaner & Tainy, songwriters (Juanes Featuring Alessia Cara)
    "Un Año" — Mauricio Rengifo, Andrés Torres & Sebastián Yatra, songwriters (Sebastián Yatra Featuring Reik)
    "Ven" — Fonseca, songwriter (Fonseca)

  • Best Pop Song

    WINNER "Mi Persona Favorita" — Camila Cabello & Alejandro Sanz, songwriters (Alejandro Sanz & Camila Cabello)
    "Bailar" — Leonel García, songwriter (Leonel García)
    "Buena Para Nada" — Paula Arenas, Luigi Castillo & Santiago Castillo, songwriters (Paula Arenas)
    "Pienso En Tu Mirá" — Antón Álvarez Alfaro, El Guincho & Rosalía, songwriters (Rosalía)
    "Ven" — Fonseca, songwriter (Fonseca)

  • Best Urban Fusion/Performance

    WINNER "Calma (Remix)" — Pedro Capó & Farruko
    "Tenemos Que Hablar" — Bad Bunny
    "Pa' Olvidarte (Remix)" — ChocQuibtown, Zion & Lennox, Farruko Featuring Manuel Turizo
    "Con Calma" — Daddy Yankee Featuring Snow
    "Otro Trago" — Sech Featuring Darell


  • Best Urban Music Album

    WINNER X 100Pre — Bad Bunny
    Kisses — Anitta
    Mi Movimiento — De La Ghetto
    19 — Feid
    Sueños — Sech


  • Best Urban Song

    WINNER "Con Altura" — J Balvin, Mariachi Budda, Frank Dukes, El Guincho, Alejandro Ramirez & Rosalía, songwriters (Rosalía & J Balvin Featuring El Guincho)
    "Baila Baila Baila" — Ozuna & Vicente Saavedra, songwriters (Ozuna)
    "Caliente" — J Balvin, René Cano, De La Ghetto & Alejandro Ramirez, songwriters (De La Ghetto Featuring J Balvin)
    "Otro Trago" — Kevyn Mauricio Cruz, Kevin Mauricio Jimenez Londoño, Bryan Lezcano Chaverra, Josh Mendez, Sech & Jorge Valdes, songwriters (Sech Featuring Darell)
    "Pa' Olvidarte" — René Cano, ChocQuibtown, Kevyn Cruz Moreno, Juan Diego Medina Vélez, Andrés David Restrepo, Mateo Tejada Giraldo, Andrés Uribe Marín, Juan Vargas & Doumbia Yohann, songwriters (ChocQuibTown)


  • Best Alternative Music Album

    WINNER Norma — Mon Laferte​
    Latinoamericana — Alex Anwandter
    Discutible — Babasónicos
    Bach — Bandalos Chinos
    Prender Un Fuego — Marilina Bertoldi

  • Best Traditional Tropical Album

    WINNER Andrés Cepeda Big Band (En Vivo) — Andrés Cepeda
    Vereda Tropical — Olga Cerpa y Mestisay
    Lo Nuestro — Yelsy Heredia
    A Journey Through Cuban Music — Aymée Nuviola
    La Llave Del Son — Septeto Acarey​

  • Best Singer-Songwriter Album

    WINNER Contra El Viento — Kany García
    Acústica — Albita
    Amor Presente — Leonel García
    Algo Ritmos — Kevin Johansen
    Intuición — Gian Marco


  • Best Ranchero/Mariachi Album

    WINNER Ahora — Christian Nodal
    Mi Persona Preferida — El Bebeto
    Sigue La Dinastía... — Alex Fernández
    Más Romántico Que Nunca — Vicente Fernández
    Indestructible — Flor De Toloache

  • Best Norteño Album

    WINNER Percepción — Intocable
    Por Más — Bronco
    Las Canciones De La Abuela — Buyuchek
    Mitad Y Mitad — Calibre 50
    Amo — La Maquinaria Norteña


  • Best Long Form Music Video

    WINNER "Lo Que Fui Es Lo Que Soy" — Alejandro Sanz
    "Anatomía De Un Éxodo" — Mastodonte
    "Piazzolla, Los Años Del Tiburón" — Astor Piazzolla
    "Hotel De Los Encuentros" — Draco Rosa
    "Déjame Quererte" — Carlos Vives​