Juan Luis Guerra has signed an exclusive publishing agreement with Universal Music Publishing Group (UMPG), it was announced today by John EchevarrÃa, Executive Vice President of UMPG Latin America. The deal marks the first time the Dominican superstar assigns his catalog to a major music publisher for worldwide representation.
Guerra became a household name throughout Latin America after releasing his first album in 1984 with his band 4.40 (the band’s name is taken from the standard tuning pitch of the A note). By the 1990s he had helped propel the Bachata genre to a worldwide audience. The legendary singer, songwriter, arranger and producer has sold over 30 million albums during his thirty-year career.
“It’s an honor that Juan Luis has chosen UMPG as his new home. He’s an icon whose songs are an indelible part of the fabric of contemporary Latin music. In addition, his humanitarian work and dedication to others makes him an example for all of us,” said EchevarrÃa.
“It’s a privilege to become a part of Universal Music Publishing Group. From the moment I arrived I have received unconditional support and I feel part of the family,” said Juan Luis Guerra.
Guerra, who in 2009 received an honorary doctorate from his alma mater Berklee College of Music, skillfully infuses his music with elements ranging from R&B, folk, American rock, contemporaryclassical music and jazz, to traditional Dominican music, Afro-pop, soukousmusic and the Beatles. His lyrics reflect on social consciousness, historical perspective, romanticism and Christianity. He has won fifteen Latin GrammyÂ® awards, three GrammyÂ® Awards, and two Billboard LatinMusic Awards. In 2005, he received Billboard’s Spirit of Hope Award in recognition of his charitable work through the Juan Luis Guerra Foundation,which has helped build hospitals, churches and recreation centers in his native Dominican Republic. Among other awards he has received include BMI’s Songwriter of the Year (1995), BMI’s Icon Award (2006), and the Latin Recording Academy Person of the Year (2007).
Among the many popular artists Guerra has worked with are fellow UMPG writers RubÃ©n Blades, Alejandro Sanz and most recently Juanes, with whom he produced MTV Unplugged, which won Latin Grammy Award for Album of The Year. Guerra also won the Latin Grammy for Producer of the Year for the album.
Guerra is currently working on his highly anticipated twelfth studio album. On August 25 he released his new single, “Tus Besos” (Your Kisses),” which has reached No. 2 on the Billboard Latin Airplay Chart. The song is a traditional Bachata in the style of 4.40, mixed with rock and roll arrangements from the 1950s and 1960s. The album is scheduled for release later this year by Capitol Latin/Universal Music Latin Entertainment.