ABOUT CANDELA RECORDS
Candela Records is the UK's first ever record label dedicated to Urban Latin Music. A partnership between Atlantic Records UK, music distributor ADA and Latino Life media and events, it aims to discover and develop UK-Latin talent and launch it onto the global stage.
A partnership between Atlantic Records UK (Warner Music Group) and LatinoLife media, music and events, Candela Records was established in July 2021 to focus on developing the sounds of Latin London, which fuse the city's unique urban beats with Latin Caribbean flavas, and on bringing this unique hybrid mixing reggaetón, grime, drill, dancehall, afrobeats, salsa, soul, funk and more, to the global stage.
In the words of Austin Daboh, EVP, Atlantic Records: “Candela is the first UK frontline label to partner with a UK based Latino label, dedicated to shining a spotlight on this incredibly vibrant music scene and to finding the Latino superstars of the future.”
Specifically the venture was an investment in three individuals, Jose Luis Seijas, Luciano Pinto and Amaranta Wright, leading references for London’s Latin community, who had long been nurturing young Latin talent, and who, according to Trenton Harrison-Lewis, SVP, ADA and WMUK, “have their fingers on the pulse of Latin culture in the UK...we think it’s incredibly important that we help serve what we believe is an under-served community in the UK. Together we will find incredible new talent that will shine on the global stage.”
RECORD BREAKING RELEASES
The team at Candela Records immediately set about developing a roster of artists, beginning with Venezuelan-born Angelo Flow. In March 2023 "Hot Steppa" Angelo Flow's single featuring dancehall legend J Spades and Dutch producer Diztortion broke records by becoming the most streamed UK-produced Latino song ever, clocking over 266k views in YouTube in 4 days. The song also became the first homegrown Latino song playlisted on rotation on UK radio (Kiss Fresh).
In addition to Angelo Flow, Candela also signedand Alvarez Funk an electrifying and high energy Cuban funk band, Tottenham-raised Ecuadorian rapper Guala and Chilean Tottenham artist, J Dogg.
CANDELA RECORDS TALENT DEVELOPMENT PROGRAMME
Mentoring and Outreach
In addition to our signed artists, many more are being nurtured within Candela’s development programme. A major part of Candela’s ambitions, is supporting the Latin music industry and its artists at a grassroots level.
LatinoLife has been mentoring young Latin creatives on an informal basis for 20 years, ever since we showcased the first UK Latin urban artists at our pioneering club nights, La Bomba at Ministry of Sound in 2005 - the UK's first reggaeton parties. With the support of the Arts Council, we have now launched a formal Mentoring Programme which supports 10 young artists every year, who have embarked on a career but need access, expertise and help to develop their work.
Our outreach work feeds into our mentoring scheme by delving even deeper into this underrepresented community, to find the seeds of future talent at school age. Our signe artists go into schools, give workshops and performances, igniting the spark in future generations.
We produce 4 'Incubator' events every year for musicians, DJs, dancers, promoters, venues, labels, distributors, media and all those with a professional interest in the creation, promotion and distribution of Latin Music in the UK. These will consist of panel discussions, networking sessions + live music showcases - a chance for everyone with a passion for Latin music to get together, rub shoulders, make and activate big plans!
The Candela Hub
Home to our mentoring scheme - our studio provides a home for young creatives interested in the creation/promotion of Latin music and/or pursuing a professional career in it. It also is the home of LatinoLife radio - the UK’s first bi-lingual 24 hour Latin radio, Including 8 hours live programming a day dedicated to Latin culture and music as seen through the UK-Latin lens and play Latin (inc. UK-produced) music currently ignored by mainstream, essential to advancing UK Latin music industry. Includes training of new generation of Latin radio professionals.
A LEGACY OF TALENT DEVELOPMENT
Candela Records is an extension of media and events group LatinoLife, the driving force of Latin culture in the UK. For 20 years, LatinoLife has been developing the Latin music industry, beginning with Europe's first ever Reggaetón Festival back in 2004, giving a platform to up-and-coming talent, followed by with 'La Bomba' nights ,in 2005.
Facing blanket disinterest from UK media, LatinoLife launched itself own, www.latinolife.co.uk now the UK’s longest-running and widest-reaching Latino lifestyle publication, as well as reggaeton.uk. In 2012 it founded The LUKAS, Europe's only Latin entertainment awards. It has run Latino Life in the Park since 2016 at Finsbury Park, which includes The Candela Stage.
In 2023 LatinoLife became the UK's first and only Latina-run National Portfolio Organisation, chosen to be part of the UK government's ‘most varied and ambitious’ portfolio of NPOs and receive regular Arts Council funding for the next 3 years. In being one of the 985 organisations selected to “drive growth in the UK’s world leading creative industries,” LatinoLife joins iconic institutions such as the Royal Shakespeare Company and The Royal Opera House recognised for artistic excellence and commitment to making the arts accessible to everyone.
THE CANDELA TEAM
As part of this new venture, Jose Luis Seijas oversees Candela Records operations, Luciano Pinto is Head of A&R and Amaranta Wright, LatinoLife magazine founder and editor, is Head of Communications.
Jose Luis Seijas
Having arrived in the UK from Venezuela at the age of 19, Caracas-born Jose Luis established himself as one of Europe's leading Latin DJs and events promoters during the last two decades and a central reference point for Britain's Latin community. Back in the early noughties, Jose Luis pioneered the urban Latin movement in Europe by launching its largest reggaetón club night, La Bomba, initially at the Ministry of Sound, then taking it Europe, including what would become the very first reggaetón residency in Pacha, Ibiza. As well as starting some of London's most innovative club nights, Jose Luis directed the UK's biggest Latin festivals, including Latin Splash, Carnaval del Pueblo and now LatinoLife in the Park. Rooted in a deep love and knowledge of Latin music, years of expertise and loyalty to his roots, Jose Luis always has his finger on the Latin pulse. Jose Luis is also a co-founder of LatinoLife and Candela Records.
Luciano Santana Pinto
Born in London to Chilean parents, Luciano Pinto was one of the founding members of Rumba FM, the UK's pioneering latino pirate station, where his team pioneered the future sound of reggaetón, reflecting the tastes of the new UK-Latin generation. He later positioned himself as manager of the ground-breaking and award- winning trap collective B.E.R.C.S., launching Luciano into the world of social media. His platform @latinoshaderoom is the UK's most popular latino themed social media channel and has positioned Luciano as one of the most influential young latinos in Britain.
Amaranta Wright is a journalist, author, magazine editor and social entrepreneur and co-founder of LatinoLife. Born in Buenos Aires, Amaranta Wright came to the UK from Argentina at the age of six. From attending her local Haringey comprehensive school, she received an unconditional offer from Oxford University to read Modern History, after which, craving for her birthplace, she returned to Argentina, to start her own column on a local newspaper. She went on to become news correspondent for The Sunday Telegraph, San Francisco Chronicle, The Scotsman, and The Toronto Globe and Mail. She was short-listed for The Jane Packenham Journalism award for her work.
Amaranta then worked for Levi Strauss in a job that took her across Latin America researching youth culture. She wrote about her experience in a critically acclaimed book 'Ripped and Torn: Levi's, Latin America and The Blue Jean Dream' published by Random House, which is now being made into a film. In 2007 Amaranta founded LatinoLife magazine – now the UK's leading latino lifestyle magazine in print (www.issuu.com/latinolife) and online www.latinolife.co.uk. She founded and co-produces the UK's biggest Latin Festival www.latinolifeinthepark.co.uk The LUKAS Awards www.thelukas.co.uk and LoLaMC, The London Latin Music Conference (www.lolamc.co.uk).