In a year when Billboard’s Latin charts were dominated by uptempo dance music and a slew of younger names, veteran hitmaker Don Omar and newcomer Prince Royce tied as the biggest winners at last night’s 2012 Billboard Latin Music Awards, earning eight honors each. Other finalists inlcuded Shakira, Gilberto Santa Rosa, Pitbull, Maná, Michel Teló, Jenni Rivera, Romeo Santos, Ricky Martin, Juanes, Marc Anthony, Wisin & Yandel, Camila, ALejandra Guzmán & Chino y Nacho.
The awards show aired live April 26 on Telemundo from the BankUnited Center in Miami, featuring performances by Don Omar and Prince Royce, as well as Pitbull, Juanes and Brazilian artist Michel Teló, the lattermost singing his No. 1 hit “Ai Se Eu Te Pego” on U.S. TV for the first time.
If Prince Royce’s awards haul pointed to an album’s success, then Don Omar’s wins were due to specific songs, with the Lucenzo collaboration “Danza Kuduro” (Machete/Universal Music Latin Entertainment [UMLE]) and lambada reboot “Taboo” scoring many of the song honors.
Thanks to sales and airplay of his self-titled debut album, urban bachata star Prince Royce was named artist of the year, which considers an artist’s combined rankings on Billboard’s sales, radio and digital songs charts. After winning the new Latin artist honor in 2011, Prince Royce was able to sustain that momentum in 2012, with his work on indie label Top Stop also winning accolades as album of the year, in addition to digital album, tropical album and tropical albums artist, solo.