About Billboard Awards
The musical extravaganza, which this year airs live April 23 from the BankUnited Center in Miami, celebrates the longest running and most prestigious awards in the Latin music realm.
While other awards shows are based on “nominations” or votes from allegad experts, the Billboard Awards honor the most popular recordings, songs and performers in the genre, according to actual sales and radio data published weekly on Billboard Magazine. Billboard does not “nominate” artists. Instead, this year’s “finalists” and eventual winners are determined by their performance on the Billboard charts during a one-year period from the issue dated February 9, 2008 through this year\'s January 31 issue.
The Billboard Latin music awards are given out in 54 categories, that recognize not only the work and art of musicians, composers and producers, but also the work done by the industry as a whole.
The Billboard Latin Music Awards are the only in the industry that recognize labels and publishers for their work in each genre of Latin music. It’s one more example of Billboard’s commitment to the music industry.
During thier 20 years of existence, the Billboard Latin Music Awards have evolved with the industry. 2008, for example, marked the first time an award was given in the “Latin Ringmaster of the Year” category. This year, awards will be given in to the Latin Digital Download Artist of the Year and the Latin Digital Download Song of the Year in recognition of digital and mobile sales.
Aside from giving awards based on the charts, Billboard also gives special discretionary awards decided upon by its editorial council. These incllude the Lifetime Achievement Award for artistic trajectory and outstanding achievements in the musical realm, the Hall of Fame Award for contributions to Latin music, and the Spirit of Hope Award for humanitarian work.
The Spirit of Hope Award was created over 10 years ago honoring the memory of slain Tejano singer Selena. The award honors artists for altruistic work. Past winners inlcude Ricky Martin, Maná, Ricardo Montaner and Shakira. This year’s honoree is Daddy Yankee for his work with his Corazón Guerrero Foundation, which helps rehabilitate youths who have been in prison and also works toward improving the livelihood of underprivileged children in different countries.
The Lifetime Achievement award recognizes a career of excellence. Past winners include Vicente Fernández, Celia Cruz, José Feliciano and Miguel Bosé. This year’s recipient will be icon Carlos Santana, recognizing an extraordinary artistic career that has succeeded in expanding the knowledge of Latin music worldwide, summed to a lifetime of altruistic work.
In addition, Billboard will posthumously honor media pioneer Pablo Raul Alarcón, the founder of the SBS radio network, with the Hall of Fame Award for his contributions to the promotion and exposure of Latin music.
The Billboard Latin Music awards will air live April 23 on the Telemando network and will feature performances by the top artists of the year. The awards will be seen live in the United States and will also be shown in over 50 countries around the world.