This year, however, the three of them are going to dominate.
J Balvin earned the most nominations, coming in at 13 for the 2020 Latin Grammys, which includes two nominations for Album of the Year and two for Record of the Year, the Latin Academy announced on Tuesday. Bad Bunny and Ozuna trail right behind Balvin with nine and eight nominations, respectively.
For Balvin, he is looking at a chance to win his first Album of the Year prize thanks to his fifth solo album, Colores and his collaborative project with Bad Bunny, Oasis. Bad Bunny is on that same list for his sophomore release YHLQMDLG, going up against albums from Ricky Martin, Carlos Vives, Jesse & Joy, Kany García, Natalia Lafourcade, Camilo and Fito Paez.
Record of the Year is another category with 10 nominees, with contenders including many hip-hop-inspired Latin songs that have been dominating the Latin music charts throughout this past year. These tracks have earned hundreds of millions plays on streaming services, with some even reaching the billion-mark on YouTube, including Karol G and Nicki Minaj’s global hit “Tusa” and “China” by Anuel AA, Daddy Yankee, Karol G, Ozuna, J Balvin and Marco Masis. Other nominees in the category include J Balvin’s song “Rojo” and Bad Bunny’s “Vete.”
“Tusa” is the sole Latin trap nominee in the category, which is a big deal for Karol G, who didn’t receive a single nomination last year despite her success elsewhere. This year, the Colombian performer has four nominations, including two shared with Nicki Minaj. Her fiancé, Puerto Rican rapper-singer Anuel AA, is a first-time nominee this year, scoring a whopping seven nominations, which includes one for Best New Artist.
“Over the last year, we continued engaging in discussions with our members to improve the awards process and actively encouraged diverse Latin music creators to join and participate,” Latin Academy President and CEO Gabriel Abaroa Jr. said in a statement, going on to call this year’s nominees “a group that reflects the constant evolution of Latin music.”
This change in the nominations and the artists being honored comes ss a result of last year’s debacle. Social media exploded following last year’s ceremony as Latin artists posted images of the Grammy logo with a large red “X″ across it, with words on the image reading in Spanish: “Without reggaeton, there’s no Latin Grammys.”
To send a message, J Balvin skipped the live show and Bad Bunny, who won Best Urban Music Album during the telecast, told the audience: “With all due respect, reggaeton is part of the Latin culture.”
It looks like their message was received loud and clear.