The Latin Recording Academy® to honor Erasmo Carlos, Dyango, Andy Montañez, José María Napoleón, Chucho Valdés, Wilfrido Vargas, and Yuri with the Lifetime Achievement Award

August 29, 2018 -- 7:00 am PDT

The Latin Recording Academy® to honor  Erasmo Carlos, Dyango, Andy Montañez, José María Napoleón, Chucho Valdés, Wilfrido Vargas, and Yuri with the Lifetime Achievement Award

Horacio Malvicino and Tomás Muñoz to Receive the Trustees Award

MIAMI (August 29, 2018) – The Latin Recording Academy® announced today that Erasmo Carlos, Dyango, Andy Montañez, José María Napoleón, Chucho Valdés, Wilfrido Vargas, and Yuri will receive this year’s Lifetime Achievement Award. Additionally, Horacio Malvicino and Tomás Muñoz will receive the Trustees Award. The honorees will be celebrated during a private ceremony to be held at the Four Seasons Hotel in Las Vegas on Nov. 13th as part of the 19th Annual Latin GRAMMY® Week.

"We are proud to pay tribute to this remarkable group of talented artists and music professionals with this year's Lifetime Achievement and Trustees Awards," said Gabriel Abaroa Jr., Latin Recording Academy President/CEO. "Our 2018 class has made outstanding contributions benefitting Ibero-American music, providing innovation and a unique vision in favor of all music lovers."

The Lifetime Achievement Award is presented to performers who have made unprecedented contributions of outstanding artistic significance to Latin music. The Trustees Award is voted on by The Latin Recording Academy's Board of Trustees and given to individuals who have made significant contributions, other than in performance, to music during their careers.


2018 Lifetime Achievement Award Honorees:

Erasmo Carlos

There are two sides to the wondrous musical biography of Erasmo Carlos.  First, his songwriting partnership with pop-star Roberto Carlos, which helped define the emotional scope and nostalgic textures of Latin American balladry in the ’70s. Second, there’s his brilliant solo career, which includes some of the most unpredictable and evocative albums in the history of Brazilian music. The singer-songwriter gained notoriety in the late ’60s as part of the youth oriented jovem guarda movement. His 2009 album Rock 'N' Roll received a Latin GRAMMY® nomination, and in 2014, he won a Latin GRAMMY for Best Brazilian Rock Album (Gigante Gentil). Combining commercial success with relentless artistic independence, Erasmo Carlos continues to surprise and delight with each new project he embarks on.


It is no coincidence that Dyango (José Gómez Romero) is known as "La Voz del Amor" ("The Voice of Love"). Beginning with the release of his self-titled debut album Lejos de los Ojos in 1969, the Spanish singer has continued to evolve as a performer of romantic songs, leaving his indelible stamp on both the balada genre and tango. His innate talent for adding passion and honesty to every song he performs was first recognized in Latin America and later in the United States, after he traveled to Argentina and starred in the 1970's film El Mundo Es De Los Jóvenes (The World Belongs to the Young), recording an album of the same name. In 1975, his gorgeous recording of the tango "Nostalgia," with a subtle balada arrangement as well as "Por Volverte a Ver", Corazón Mágico" and "Por ese Hombre" confirmed Dyango as a key performer in Latin pop. And although his large-scale tours have reduced, he continues recording and performing live.

Andy Montañez

Puerto Rican salsa has nurtured many legendary singers. Even among such tough competition, Andy Montañez stands as one of the most soulful and creative vocalists in the Afro-Caribbean genre. He was 20 years old when he joined El Gran Combo, the quintessential salsa orchestra until 1981, when he decided to devote himself to a solo career. His newly gained independence allowed him to blossom as a songwriter and delve into the emerging style of salsa romántica. Marked by superlative production values and velvety arrangements, solo hits such as "Casi Te Envidio," "Payaso," "Me Gusta," and "La Última Copa" established him as one of the most successful salsa singers of the ’80s. In 2006, he received a Latin GRAMMY for Best Traditional Tropical Album. Always willing to explore new directions, Montañez recently experimented with salsatón, fusing his tropical soundscapes with the urban vibe of reggaetón.   

José María Napoleón 

Marked by delicately layered arrangements and gorgeous melodies, the work of singer-songwriter José María Napoleón, known as "El Poeta de la Canción" ("The Song's Poet"), overflows with tenderness and poignant observations about romantic love and the meaning of life. Napoleón was one of the key protagonists of the hugely influential balada movement of the ’70s, in his native Mexico, he was only 20 years old when he recorded his first album, known as El Grillo. Napoleón—who has also acted in Mexican telenovelas—continued releasing albums, penning such emotionally charged hits as "Pajarillo," "Hombre," "Eres," "Leña Verde," "30 Años," and "Celos." In 2015, the album Vive found the singer revisiting the brightest pages of his songbook in the shape of duets with stars such as Manoella Torres, Mon Laferte, Yuri, and many others.

Chucho Valdés

It is impossible to ponder the current state of Latin jazz without considering the multifaceted talent of virtuoso pianist, bandleader, and composer Chucho Valdés. Both in his work with supergroup Irakere and as an eclectic and prolific solo artist, Valdés reinvented the lexicon of jazz, blending it with rock, classical music, and Afro-Cuban roots music. Chucho Valdés' Irakere featured some of the island’s most talented musicians including Paquito D’Rivera on saxophone, Arturo Sandoval on trumpet, and featured a dazzling mix of rock, Afro-Cuban roots music and jazz. In 1998, Valdés launched an ambitious solo career that has included outstanding performances, a moving duet album with his father Bebo Valdés (Juntos Para Siempre), crackling quartet sessions, and the appearance of a new band, The Afro-Cuban Messengers. In 2000, Chucho Valdes and his father participated in Calle 54, a documentary film about Latin jazz musicians. He has received three Latin GRAMMYs™ and six GRAMMY awards.

Wilfrido Vargas

There is a limited handful of bandleaders who managed to elevate the infectious merengue, the quintessential dance and music style from the Dominican Republic into a worldwide craze. Wilfrido Vargas is one of them, memorable and powerful hit singles such as "El Africano," "El Jardinero," "A Mover La Colita," "El Baile Del Perrito," and "Abusadora" trace a prodigious discography spanning the development of merengue. In the early ’70s, he founded the orchestra Wilfrido Vargas & Sus Beduinos, however the ’80s was a time of extraordinary growth for Vargas, as the salsa explosion of the ’70s was replaced with new styles and genres in the Latin mainstream that included merengue. Besides having participated in movies and a reality show, Vargas continues actively touring and recording to this day.


There are a few cases where the world can witness the birth, growth and rise to stardom of an artist, this would be the case of "La Güera" (The Blonde), one of the most commercially successful artists in the history of Latin pop. Mexican songstress Yuri has placed her remarkable vocal range at the service of a variety of styles—from torrid balladry and Christian music to tropical stylings, folk, and rootsy rancheras. Yuri gained fame across Latin America in 1980, acting in movies and soap operas and with the release of one of her most successful albums Esperanzas, which included the hit track of the same name. In the mid-eighties she peaked, participating in the Viña del Mar Festival and the radio hit "¿Qué Te Pasa?" from the Aire album firmly established her musical career and made her an international pop icon. During the height of her fame, she released expertly produced singles such as "Yo Te Amo, Te Amo," "Tiempos Mejores," "El Apagón", and "Karma Kamaleón," a Spanish version of the catchy Culture Club smash. "La Güera" is more active than ever.


2018 Trustees Award Honorees: 

Horacio Malvicino

Horacio Malvicino has been a successful label executive, notable administrator in his native Argentina, a legendary jazz and tango guitarist, composer, and arranger, as well as a key collaborator of tango master Astor Piazzolla. Malvicino also formed his own combo—the Horacio Malvicino Jazz Quintet—and sold more than two million records playing light versions of tango and Latin music under his artistic moniker, Alain Debray. Malvicino’s career extended beyond performing, working as an artistic director for local and international labels, and scoring more than 90 films, theater, and television productions. A musician’s musician, he has served actively as president of the Argentine Association of Performers’ Rights since 2014.

Tomás Muñoz

A trendsetting record label executive blessed with an unerring instinct for developing future pop stars, Tomás Muñoz is arguably one of Spain’s greatest music champions. When he moved to Mexico, he was offered a post as director of the Gamma record label. Muñoz quickly developed an appetite for discovering young music artists who were largely ignored by the music industry. In 1969, he was named managing director of CBS Records in Spain. He supported the careers of Julio Iglesias, Raphael, and Joaquín Sabina, effectively changing the way Spanish music was perceived and consumed throughout the world.

In 1980, he moved to Brazil, where he revolutionized the way to promote the music of artists like Simone, Roberto Carlos y Djavan. He managed the promotion of Michael Jackson, Supertramp, and the Police in South America. Muñoz’s major-label career concluded on a high note with his New York appointment as vice president of A&R for Sony Music Latin America, working with Roberto Carlos, Chayanne, and Ricky Martin, among others. Tomás' work in Spain and Brazil contributed decisively to the formation of a whole generation of executives in the music industry. After publishing his autobiography, Muñoz remained active in the music industry, having also mentored a younger generation of label executives.   

Latin GRAMMY Week will culminate with the 19th Annual Latin GRAMMY Awards, which will be broadcast live from the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas on Nov. 15, from 8–11 p.m. ET/PT (7 p.m. Central) on Univision.

For more information and the latest news, please visit the official Latin Recording Academy® website at: (#LatinGRAMMY).


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The Latin Recording Academy is an international, membership-based organization comprised of Spanish- and Portuguese-speaking recording artists, musicians, songwriters, producers and other creative and technical recording professionals. The organization is dedicated to improving the quality of life and cultural condition for Latin music and its makers. In addition to producing the Latin GRAMMY Awards to honor excellence in the recorded arts and sciences, The Latin Recording Academy provides educational and outreach programs for the Latin music community either directly or through its Latin GRAMMY Cultural Foundation®.



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