Puerto Rican rapper Daddy Yankee was among the honourees who were feted with special prizes at the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP) Latin Music Awards on Tuesday (18Mar14). The Gasolina hitmaker took home two awards during the ceremony at New York's Hammerstein Ballroom, nabbing Song of the Year for his track Limbo, as well as the Voice of Music Award, and he was visibly emotional when he stepped up to accept the prizes in front of his own personal music idols, salsa group Fania All-Stars, who were sitting in the audience.
He said, "It’s such an honour to be here. For me, everything began as a young guy in Santurce, Puerto Rico in the 90s. I still have that passion in my heart. La Fania, you’re my heroes. Thank you, and all my respect to you."
Fania All-Stars were also honoured at the Latin Music Awards - they were the recipients of the 2014 ASCAP Heritage trophy.
Fania founder and bandleader Johnny Pacheco accepted the prize, gushing over the many bandmates he's had the pleasure to play with over the past four decades.
He said, "I want to thank these boys for being with me so many years. These boys are playing in the same key they did 40 years ago. To me, this is the best salsa orchestra in existence."
Pacheco also took the stage with some of Fania's musicians, including pianist Larry Harlow, Ismael Miranda, Bobby Valentin, Roberto Roena and Ruben Blades, to perform a medley of hits.
Other winners at the ceremony included Andres Castro and Romeo Santos, who shared the Songwriter of the Year award.