Regional Mexican music superstar Alejandro Fernández beamed into the Latin Grammy Awards Thursday via virtual performance from Guadalajara. Rising Mexican acts Christian Nodal and band Calibre 50 joined the singer.
Fernández and Calibre 50 first performed a rousing rendition of their hit “Decepciones” backed by a full mariachi band. The camera then panned away to Nodal, who was on his own modest stage to sing the stinging cut “AYAYAY!” The 21-year-old singer then joined the elder statesman Fernández for their duet “Más No Puedo” before capping off their proudly Mexican performance with the hearty grito: “Viva México!”
When the nominations for this year’s Latin Grammys were announced, the regional Mexican music community took umbrage with the genre being shut out of all the major categories. On social media, executives in the genre spread the post ¿Y El Regional Mexicano No Cuenta? (“And Regional Mexican does not count?”) to raise awareness of the oversight.
During the pre-show, Fernández and Nodal lost the award for Best Regional Mexican song to Mexican singer-songwriter and Latin Grammy favorite Natalia Lafourcade. Fernández’s Hecho En México is competing with Nodal’s Ayayay! for Best Ranchero/Mariachi Album.
Calibre 50 lost the award for Best Norteño Album to genre legends Los Tigres del Norte and their album Los Tigres del Norte at Folsom Prison. The band paid tribute to Johnny Cash with their Spanish version of “Folsom Prison Blues.”
This year, Fernández backed president-elect Joe Biden’s campaign with Puerto Rican superstar Bad Bunny, lending his song “Decepciones” to a campaign ad that highlighted Donald Trump’s anti-immigrant speeches.