Uruguayan Musician Rubén Rada Receives Master of Latin Music Award

Uruguayan musician Rubén Rada was presented with Berklee’s Master of Latin Music Award at an event hosted by the college's Latin Music Studies.

September 29, 2015

Uruguayan musician Rubén Rada received Berklee’s Master of Latin Music Award at a recent event at the Red Room at Cafe 939. Berklee’s Latin Music Studies presented the award during the college’s Latin Music and Culture Celebration 2015. Rada, who performed with students and faculty at the event, was recognized for his lifetime commitment to Afro-Latin music and his contributions to advancing the music and culture of Uruguay.

Singer-songwriter Rada has been a cross-genre pioneer for decades, fusing musical genres like candombe, jazz, funk, soul, and pop. He has combined popular sounds from all over the world with his native musical culture and African heritage. Rada is a visionary who has been a key element in the birth of a new Afro-Brazilian pop and rock idiom alongside Gilberto Gil and Caetano Veloso.

His compositional brilliance has caught the ears of world-respected artists like Paul McCartney and Brazilian singer Milton Nascimento. Some of Rada’s biggest moments on stage have been performing with stars like Sting, UB40, Ray Barretto, Flora Purim, and Hermeto Pascoal, showcasing his wide vocal range for more than 100,000 fans.

Of his many collaborations and albums, Montevideo (1996) seized the attention of the world music scene, reaching platinum sales in Uruguay. The album was later released in Argentina, Japan, France, Italy, Sweden, Germany, and the United States. In 2011, Rada received the Latin Recording Academy’s Lifetime Achievement Award.

In 2013, Berklee launched its Master Musician Awards, a new effort to celebrate the work of musicians through a series of specialized awards. The Master of Latin Music Award honors musicians who exemplify the practices and values of Berklee Latino and Berklee Latin Music Studies, which explores Latin, Brazilian, Caribbean, Afro-Cuban, and other styles to develop an understanding of both the performance aspects of Latin music and the history and cultures from which it was born and continues to thrive. Other recipients include Magos Herrera and Armando Manzanero.

For more information about the awards, visit berklee.edu/awards/music-masters-awards.