The Latin Recording Academy Honors Rubén Blades As Person Of The Year

Honoree Rubén Blades (C) accepts the Person of the Year award from CEO of the Latin Recording Academy Manuel Abud (L) and Joaquín Sabina (R) onstage during The Latin Recording Academy’s 2021 Person of the Year Gala honoring Ruben Blades at Michelob ULTRA Arena on November 17, 2021 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Rodrigo Varela/Getty Images for The Latin Recording Academy)

It’s Latin Grammys week y ayer The Latin Recording Academy® celebrated its 2021 Latin Recording Academy Person of the Year Gala honoring Panameño salsa artist Rubén Blades.

The event included a rendition of Blades’ renowned repertoire featuring past and current Latin GRAMMY Awards® nominees including Ángela Aguilar, Christina Aguilera, María Becerra, Eduardo Cabra, Andrés Calamaro, Sofia Carson, Oscar D’León, Farruko, , Lasso,Beatriz Luengo, Marc Anthony, Rafa Pabón, René Pérez, Milly Quezada, Rozalén, Joaquín Sabina, María Toledo,Diego Torres, Vicentico, Carlos Vives and Yotuel.

An eight-time Latin GRAMMY® and nine-time GRAMMY®-winner, singer-songwriter, producer, musician, actor and activist, Rubén Blades was honored for his continued commitment to fighting for social justice around the world by supporting initiatives that raise awareness towards political oppression, hunger, poverty, and more.

Through his music, with songs such as “Prohibido Olvidar,” “Buscando América” and “Desapariciones,” he has been a champion for positive, meaningful change in Latin communities and beyond.

The sold-out, star-studded gala and tribute concert was held at the Michelob Ultra Arena at Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas featured guest appearances via video segments by Michael Bublé,  Juan Luis Guerra,, Gilberto Santa Rosa, Alejandro Sanz, Roberto Delgado& Orquesta accompanied the performers onstage throughout the night. The concert ended with a standing ovation after a stellar rendition of “Pedro Navaja” performed by Blades himself.


The net proceeds from the 2021 Latin Recording Academy Person of the Year Gala will go toward the charitable work of the Latin GRAMMY Cultural Foundation®, whose mission is to further international awareness and appreciation of the significant contributions of Latin music and its makers to the world’s culture. The Foundation provides college scholarships, educational programs and grants for the research and preservation of its rich musical legacy and heritage, and to date has donated more than $6.5 million with the support of Latin Recording Academy members, artists, corporate sponsors and other generous donors. 

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