2024 Billboard Latin Women In Music: La India Receives Pioneer Award; Dedicates It To Queen Of Salsa Celia Cruz

With her tribute, La India reminded us all of Cruz's unmatched contributions to the genre, firmly establishing herself as a respected figure in Latin music history.

Updated on Jun 10, 2024  |  11:26 AM IST |  27.7K
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La India (Getty Images)

La India received the Billboard Latin Women in Music Pioneer Award at the 2024 ceremony held on Sunday, June 9, and she shone not only with a powerful performance that preceded her acceptance of the honor but also with a speech full of generosity and gratitude that touched millions of hearts.

Accompanied by a large orchestra made up mostly of women, and with producer Sergio George on the piano, the Princess of Salsa gave her all on the stage and reminded the world why her godmother, the Queen of Salsa, Celia Cruz, gave her the aforementioned nickname.

La India pays tribute to Celia Cruz and Gloria Estefan in her acceptance speech


In a white suit with sequins, La India serenaded the live crowd and the TV audience by singing the classic Ese Hombre and then performing Vivir lo Nuestro with Luis Figueroa. Moments later, she accepted the Pioneer Award from her friend, actress Maripily Rivera, and here's what she said on receiving the accolade.

“First of all, I want to thank God for creating us and music,” La India began, adding, “I want to thank Billboard for always being here by my side since I was very young.”

The Puerto Rican singer then went on to thank a series of key figures in her career including her manager, as well as music producer Sergio George, and Celia Cruz. About the latter, La India said, “I know that from heaven, she is proud of me. And I dedicate this to her and her Little Cotton Head, my godfather Pedro Knight."

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Regarding Gloria Estefan, who was also honored with the Legend Award the same evening, the Fuera Fuera singer expressed gratitude, thanking her for being an inspiration to all of us.

Other Honorees at the 2024 Billboard Women in Latin Music Awards


In its second edition, the Billboard Women in Latin Music Awards also honored Karol G as Woman of the Year, Ángela Aguilar with the Musical Dynasty Award, Camila Cabello with the Global Impact Award, Kany Garcia as Spirit of Change, and Kali Uchis as Rising Star.

The 2024 Billboard Women in Latin Music Awards aired on Telemundo, a Spanish-language terrestrial TV network on Sunday, June 9, at 9 p.m. ET. The ceremony is also available to stream on the Telemundo app and Peacock.

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