There were many very moving moments at the Latin Songwriters Hall of Fame 2016 La Musa Awards. But Draco Rosa's induction into the Hall of Fame on Thursday night was especially poignant, following a hard-won remission from cancer that now finds him finally touring again.
"I've always said music is meant to be felt, not understood," said Rosa, who received his award from friend Lenny Kravitz. "Nowadays, I'm dedicated to living. I don't have time for much else," added Rosa, who profusely thanked a slew of people, including his longtime wife and his longtime manager, Angelo Medina, who received the Desi Arnaz pioneer award that evening.
Rosa -- known for his very commercial fare (he co-wrote many of Ricky Martin's hits, including "Livin' La Vida Loca") as well as his very personal tunes -- then launched into melancholy sophistication, singing with his banjo and accompanied in an exquisite arrangement performed by musicians from the Miami Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Eduardo Marturet.
Having the orchestra as the house band gave an added touch of artistry to the award ceremony, which took place at the Fillmore in Miami Beach.
Other inductees of the evening included Los Temerarios -- the superstar romantic Mexican duo of brothers Adolfo and Gustavo Angel -- prolific songwriter Claudia Brant, Alejandro Jaen, Miguel Luna and Cheo Zorrilla.
Special awards were given to Yotuel, Julieta Venegas, Larry Harlow and Emily Estefan.
Jorge Mejia, president of Sony/ATV Music publishing for U.S. Latin and Latin America, received the Ralph S. Peer award for his work in publishing. Mejia played one of his own compositions at the piano, underscoring what friend and presenter Mario Domm meant when he said he signed with him because he relished being represented by another artist.
The evening opened with Jon Secada performing a rousing rendition of Benny More, who was named a posthumous inductee and whose work Secada is reprising in his new album.
Yotuel of the group Orishas received the conqueror award from Sony Music Latin America chairman Afo Verde, then performed with a slew of friends. Brant was serenaded by Kany Garcia, Leslie Grace and Luis Fonsi, who called her his "sister."
The evening -- peppered with other impressive performances -- ended with a multi-artist rendition of "Oye Como Va," honored as "towering song."