Born and raised in Medellín, Colombia, Juan Esteban Aristizábal – better known to most of the world as JUANES, has become Latin Rock’s leading global ambassador. Hailed by TIME as “one of the 100 Most-Influential People in the World,” and The New York Times as “Latin America’s hottest singer-songwriter… a soulful poet with electric guitar,” Juanes has built a distinctive sound that fuses his love of rock & pop music with smartly crafted, multi-layered songwriting and a deep reverence for the traditional folk and other indigenous rhythms of Colombia and Latin America. With seven multi-platinum studio albums, a critically-praised MTV Unplugged release, and Disney soundtrack work to his credit, Juanes has sold millions of albums around the world, notched ELEVEN #1 Billboard singles, holds multiple records for Latin rock chart duration, and has been recognized with numerous awards, including a staggering TWENTY-SIX combined GRAMMY & Latin Grammy Awards. Juanes also won one Latin Grammy this year.
Frequently recognized as one of Latin music’s leading social media voices (with an online following of over 25 million fans), Juanes has also made several groundbreaking TV and special event appearances – such as the first Spanish Language Grammy performance in a decade, the first Spanish language performances on The Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, The Tonight Show Featuring Jimmy Fallon, The Late Show With Stephen Colbert, and The TODAY Show Plaza concert series. Juanes has also represented the Latin Music community with performances at the World Cup, the Vatican’s “Festival of Families” event with Pope Francis, a bilingual educational performance on Sesame Street, primetime TV Tribute concerts to John Lennon & Frank Sinatra, and multiple appearances at The Kennedy Center Honors, Musicares Person of the Year tribute, and The Nobel Peace Prize Concert.
The Colombian superstar is also a dedicated global activist, with wide ranging charitable work for his own Mi Sangre Foundation (spotlighted in a special Billboard Philanthropy issue) and as a co-founder of the “Paz sin Fronteras” (Peace Without Borders) organization- which utilizes music to unite populaces regardless of political or geographic divides and advocates that all people are entitled to the basic human right of peace.
The past year has seen Juanes continue to break new ground for Latin Music with the release of the genre’s first full visual concept album – Mis Planes Son Amarte, a new 12-song collection and accompanying live-action film that details an astronaut’s search for true love across time and space. The album’s first advance single, “Fuego” quickly vaulted to #1 on charts in 17 countries, including Billboard’s “Latin Airplay” chart, notching Juanes’ 11th #1 Single in the United States. The positive reception for the album followed suit, debuting at #1 on the Billboard Latin Album chart, and likewise atop iTunes charts in numerous countries. Upon release, Mis Planes Son Amarte was praised by NBC News as “A STUNNING Visual Album.. that forges connections between modern man and our ancestral traditions” and received a rare “FIVE-STAR” review from Rolling Stone – declaring it: JUANES’ most ambitious album of his career… 12 songs close to Bruce Springsteen and David Bowie in the way Juanes grounds his practiced, commercial appeal in a more intimate resonance of plain truths … [MPSA] is Juanes showing how it is possible to touch the stars with your feet firmly on the ground.” Juanes’ musical peers recently continued the special recognition for Mis Planes Son Amarte, with five additional Latin Grammy nominations– making him the most-nominated solo artist in Latin Grammy history, and a Best Latin Pop Grammy nomination.
This spring saw Juanes launch an extensive U.S. leg of his critically-praised Amarte tour.
“The biggest and most important Latin music artist in the world in the early 21st century… Juanes remains unwavering in his commitment to artistic growth and constant reinvention… Mis Planes Son Amarte [is] trippy, elastic, and utterly engaging, with a wonderful narrative… Mis Planes Son Amarte not only breaks ground on every aesthetic frontier, but results in the finest outing in Juanes‘ career to date. ” – All Music