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Uruguay’s Jorge Drexler eclipses Bad Bunny at Latin Grammys

By AFP - Nov 24,2022 - Last updated at Nov 24,2022

Uruguayan musician Jorge Drexler poses with the award for Record of the Year and multiple others during the 23rd Annual Latin Grammy awards at the Mandalay Bay’s Michelob Ultra Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada, on November 17 (AFP photo by Ronda Churchill)

LAS VEGAS/NEW YORK — Uruguay’s top musical export Jorge Drexler overshadowed megastar Bad Bunny’s hype at the Latin Grammys, scoring seven trophies including Best Record during the gala that saw Spain’s Rosalia take home the coveted top album award.

The Puerto Rican reggaeton phenom Bad Bunny had been tipped as the favourite coming in with 10 nominations, though he was unable to attend the 23rd edition of the awards held in Las Vegas as he continues his massively popular world tour.

The 28-year-old — currently the highest-grossing and most streamed artist on the planet following the release of his album “Un Verano Sin Ti” — did nab five trophies but fell short of the night’s most prestigious prizes.

“Are you sure?” asked a surprised Drexler as he took the stage to accept the award for Song of the Year for “Tocarte”, a track that also featured Spanish rapper C. Tangana.

Along with Bad Bunny — whose smash “Titi Me Pregunto” ultimately scored two awards in the “urban” categories — the 58-year-old was up against stacked competition including Rosalia, who won four awards including for her critically acclaimed album “Motomami”, and Colombia’s Karol G. 

In his speech Drexler acknowledged the massive reach of Latin urban music including reggaeton, dedicating the award “to everyone who does urban music in Spanish because you’ve taken our music to places it was never in before”.

Drexler was the big winner but in some respects it was Cuban Angela Alvarez who stole the show: at 95 years old the singer scored a gramophone for Best New Artist.

“It’s never too late,” said Alvarez, bringing the auditorium to tears in accepting the award that she shared in a tie with the Mexican artist Silvana Estrada.

“I want to dedicate this award to God, and to my beloved Cuba, which I will never forget. And to those who have yet to make their dreams come true, know that although life is hard, there’s always a way out and with faith and love everything can be achieved,” Alvarez said. 

“With faith and love you can make it, I promise you.”


Anitta, Bad Bunny head to Grammys


Rosalia was visibly surprised in accepting the night’s top award for her genre-fusing masterpiece “Motomami”, telling the cheering crowd that it was “the album I had to fight the hardest to make.”

“But I put it out there and that has given me the most joy.”

Colombian crooner Sebastian Yatra — who made a splash last year with the Oscar-nominated song “Dos Oruguitas” from the film “Encanto” — notched two awards in the pop categories including Best Pop Song for “Tacones Rojos”, which he performed during the gala with John Legend.

Brazil’s Anitta left the show empty-handed — she was up for two awards for her booty-grinding reggaeton hit “Envolver” — but delivered a show-stopping performance of that hit and a twerk-heavy mashup of Brazilian dance tracks.

The 29-year-old is among the contenders for Best New Artist at February’s Grammys to be held in Los Angeles.

Bad Bunny’s work will also feature at the forthcoming Grammy gala, with “Un Verano Sin Ti” in the running for Album of the Year.

It’s the first time an all-Spanish album has a chance at that coveted award, and the Puerto Rican reggaeton megastar’s first time landing a solo nomination in the major Grammy categories.

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