Championing La Comunidad: CAA Finding Ways To Amplify Latin Artists’ Messages

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Creative Artists Agency’s Mac Clark (left) and Rudy Lopez Negrete work to give Latin clients opportunities to voice their messages through music and every medium possible. (Photos courtesy CAA)

Three Latin artists made it to the top five in Pollstar’s Mid-Year Top 100 Worldwide Tours chart, indicating where pop music is and where it’s going. Latin music is a consistently growing juggernaut that is taking center stage in various parts of the industry, from touring to sponsorships, and Creative Artists Agency is making sure the spotlight remains on acts who, for a long time, didn’t receive their flowers.

CAA has long worked with Latin artists like Enrique Iglesias, Ricky Martin, Alejandra Guzmán, Gloria Estefan and Mon Laferte on their roster, but the agency reaffirmed its commitment to its Latin clients and the community they serve with the launch of CAA Latino, an initiative announced last December that aims to give more opportunities to Hispanic clients and amplify their messages.

“When we take a step back and think about what we do, our goal is to represent people who have grand ambitions and huge dreams, and our goal is to help those dreams come true in a multitude of shapes and sizes,” CAA Agent Mac Clark tells Pollstar. “It’s also our responsibility to introduce them to the dreams that will come and then go and execute on those things, and that happens in TV, films, books and other mediums within our agency. We look at everything holistically, and it’s extremely important to us to represent these artists culturally but also the voices behind them.”

With social media and streaming, those voices are louder than ever, elevating the various genres within the Latin music umbrella to new heights and taking them to new markets. Now more than ever, companies are looking at Latin artists as spokespeople for their brand globally, not just for a specific region, and CAA is capitalizing on the popularity of the music to help their clients find other revenue streams outside of touring.

“I think corporate America has realized, especially in the last five years, if you don’t have a Hispanic strategy, you’re going to miss the boat on an incredibly lucrative and important part of this country,” says Rudy Lopez Negrete, an agent at CAA who oversees all Latin brand partnerships and is spearheading the company’s Latin initiative. “… Nowadays, we see artists be the face of these global campaigns from these brands. No longer are they just, ‘Oh let’s throw them on Telemundo or Univision.’ They’re on the Super Bowl, and that is a huge shift, which started a while ago.”

In the past, companies, even those that cater to Latin communities, would shell out money to non-Spanish-speaking celebrities. Corona, one of the most popular Mexican beer brands in the world, appointed rapper Snoop Dogg as an ambassador a few years ago but shifted to a new strategy in 2024 and signed Chilean-born actor Pedro Pascal and Latin superstar Peso Pluma, both CAA clients.

“They’re not going to have another American artist who is going to be it,” Negrete says. [Peso Pluma] is the strategy. They’ve doubled down on it. … I think the brands that get it put these artists at the forefront of their marketing campaigns because they know they’re going to have a return on investment. Simple as that.”

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CAA bolstered its Latin roster by signing Mexican star Peso Pluma in May. (Photo by Erika Goldring/WireImage)

On top of the spending power they possess, Latinos are also very loyal, Negrete says, and it showed with RBD’s massively successful reunion tour last year. The Mexican pop group, which was formed as a promotional vehicle for a popular telenovela in the 2000s, grossed more than $192 million, according to Pollstar Boxoffice, and those figures don’t include the shows they had in the tough Portuguese-speaking market of Brazil. Clark said Brazilian fans camped outside the stadium where RBD was playing for a week hoping to score tickets, and the reception from fans in the U.S. and Latin America  for that tour “was something really miraculous that happened.”

The same really could be said about the surging interest in the regional Mexican genre. Peso Pluma’s collaboration with Eslabon Armado on “Ella Baila Sola” became a global sensation and was named the best song of 2023 by Rolling Stone. Peso Pluma is the face of corridos tumbados (hip-hop-infused folk music), and CAA landed the singer from Jalisco back in May.

The effort that went into signing Peso Pluma is not only is a testament to the artist’s star power but also to CAA’s commitment to its Latino initiative. The agency pulled out all the stops by having its trio of leaders — Bryan Lourd (CEO and co-chairman of CAA), Richard Lovett (former president) and Kevin Huvane (partner and managing director) — meet with the poster boy of the current música Mexicana movement. CAA quickly showed their new client what was within grasp as he prepared for his Coachella set. The Mexican artist wanted to include Morgan Freeman’s iconic voice in his introduction video, and the agency pulled it off in a matter of days because the actor is a longtime client of CAA.

“It speaks to how important CAA’s cultural relationship to one another is,” Clark says. “The ability to create something like that for Peso … was really special. It was a fun thing that happened, but it was day one [of having him as a client]. That’s what it means for us to get behind our clients. He had never had an agent before. We had to educate him through that process of what that looked like, so it made it more special that he chose us.”

Going above and beyond for their clients will only help CAA draw more Latin artists, which is significant as the cultural landscape is changing not only in the entertainment industry but also demographically around the globe.

“The Hispanic community continues to grow everywhere, especially in this country,” Negrete says. “It’s going to be in smaller cities across the Midwest and the South because there are more Latin people that are either growing up as a first generation or joining families here, but the face of this country is changing, and we’re going to bring our culture and music with us. We’re going to evangelize the rest of this country to make sure they hear it.”