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This story first appeared in the Nov. 29 issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine.
Shakira and Enrique Iglesias, veterans at 36 and 38, respectively, have paved the way for a pop explosion with a Spanish accent. Between them, they’ve sold 140 million albums, setting a precedent for other young Latino performers, some already huge stars, others on the rise.
CHRISTINA AGUILERA, 32
Back in a judge’s seat on the fifth season of NBC’s The Voice, the five-time Grammy winner, whose father is Ecuadorian, says she’d love to work on a second Spanish album, but it’s all about the right time and the right music.
JENCARLOS CANELA, 25
Born in Miami to Cuban parents, Canela is best known as a telenovela leading man. The second single on his upcoming album features Pitbull and KC and the Sunshine Band.
DIEGO GARCIA, 33
The Argentine-American singer-songwriter got his start as the frontman of Elefante and released his first solo album, Laura, in 2011. What he enjoys most is traveling and interacting with his fans: “Going to Latin America and performing feels like coming home.”
ENRIQUE IGLESIAS, 38
Iglesias is a multiplatinum artist in every market in the world. His single “Turn the Night Up,” released in July, is the second-highest chart debut of his career. “My Latino fans have been there since the beginning of my career back in Spain, and I will never forget that,” he says. No male artist has more dance/club No. 1 singles.
BRUNO MARS, 28
In just three years, the part-Puerto Rican singer has sold more than 10 million albums and 58 million singles worldwide. In January, his single “Locked Out of Heaven” was the first Spotify track to be streamed more than a million times in one week.
The half-Mexican R&B singer-songwriter signed his first music deal in 2007 and has climbed his way up the Billboard charts. His single “Beautiful,” co-written with Mariah Carey, is his third million-seller in the U.S.
CHRISTINA MILIAN, 32
Since signing her first record deal with Def Jam at 19, the actress-singer-songwriter joined the cast of Dancing With the Stars in September and is The Voice‘s social-media correspondent. “I’m proud to break boundaries and cross hurdles that inspire other young Latinas,” she says.
The Cuban-American rapper is a radio staple across genres, with millions of digital singles sold and numerous hit collaborations with the likes of Aguilera, Ne-Yo and Jennifer Lopez.
PRINCE ROYCE, 24
Just four years after hitting the scene, the Dominican-American singer-songwriter already boasts two platinum albums. His ability to fuse bachata with today’s R&B and pop sounds makes him a fan favorite.
Born Jaime Luis Gomez in Los Angeles’ Boyle Heights neighborhood, Taboo joined the Black Eyed Peas, one of the top-selling groups of all time, more than a decade ago. The group has sold an estimated 56 million albums worldwide.
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