Two days before Latin Grammys are set to drop its own short list, the Latin American Music Awards released its nominees for its top honors. Perhaps unsurprisingly, given the chart dominance of their output this year, urbano artists captured the most love. Ozuna and J Balvin came in at nine nominations apiece, with Nicky Jam netting eight, Daddy Yankee six, and Bad Bunny five.
The Artist of the Year category features 10 names from across the industry, from Shakira to the urban heavyweights to Sinaloense group Banda MS, giving music fans across the board a stake in the top category. But nowhere is this year’s urbano dominance more marked than in the competition for Album of the Year, which is dominated by the genre. Ranchero singer Christian Nodal was the sole outlier, and he faces competition in the category from Balvin, Nicky Jam, Ozuna, and Wisin.
The Album of the Year category does not include any female nominees, a trend echoed in the Latin AMA lists for Favorite Duo or Group, New Artist of the Year, Favorite Urban Artist, Favorite Pop Album, and all categories specifically honoring the tropical and regional genres. The male-centric trend was bucked by the categories for Song of the Year and Favorite Crossover Artist, whose nominees are Camila Cabello, Cardi B, and Demi Lovato — perhaps, laying down a challenge to the Latin music industry to be a better incubator for women performers.
Will these trends be echoed in a pair of days by the Latin Recording Academy (the group responsible for the Latin Grammy nominations)? Only time will tell who comes out on top this year.
The Latin American Music Awards 2018 air Thursday, October 25, 2018 on Telemundo.