By Nelson Santana
September 24, 2019
Utopía! If there is one word that sums up Romeo Santos’ New York metropolitan concert, it certainly is “utopia.” More than 80,000 fans packed MetLife Stadium, helping Santos shatter U2’s record for musical guest attendance. In accomplishing the feat, Santos became the first Latinx person ever to headline MetLife Stadium.
During a press conference, Santos told NBC, “I want to be able to establish a precedent, not for me, for Romeo, but for the genre of bachata.”
“Utopia the Concert” lasted more than four hours. Named after Utopía, Santos’ fourth studio solo album, the concert included old-school songs and also Santos’ hits from his latest album. Songs in Utopía have dominated ESENDOM’s Top 25 for several weeks since its official release. Utopía pays homage to the most popular bachata artists of the 1990s including Luis Vargas, Raulín Rodríguez, Frank Reyes, Teodoro Reyes, Joe Veras, El Chaval, Zacarías Ferreira, Kiko Rodríguez, Elvis Martínez, and Monchy y Alexandra. Utopía also includes “Bellas,” the third song that Romeo recorded with his idol Antony Santos; although “Bellas” was first released in Antony Santos’ most recent album, La historia de mi vida: El final vol 1). Similar to those Frank Sinatra and “friends duet albums,” Santos gathered the biggest and most successful bachata artists of the decade of the nineties. In addition, Romeo recorded Utopía as a means to pay tribute to the bachata artists with whom he and Aventura grew up idolizing. Utopía also unites el Grupo Aventura in the song “Inmortal.”
“Utopia the Concert” included some stars from Romeo’s latest album: Raulín Rodríguez, Luis Vargas, Zacarías Ferreira, Elvis Martínez, Joe Veras, Frank Reyes, and Monchy and Alexandra. Of course, el Grupo Aventura also joined Santos, reuniting the iconic Bronx band, where Santos first emerged as a superstar.
Other superstars that joined Romeo included fellow Caribbean artists Cardi B, Ozuna, and Wisin y Yandel. Cardi B’s involvement in the concert is a feel-good story. Romeo was live on Instagram when he saw a message with Cardi and asked her if she was attending. The rest, as they say, is history.
As all previous solo Romeo Santos albums, Utopía reached the number one spot on the Billboard Top Latin Albums Chart and although it is no longer the top selling Latin album, it is still one of the most purchased albums in the United States and throughout Latin America.
Aventura’s frontman broke U2’s attendance record in the New Jersey NFL stadium. However, Romeo’s MetLife Stadium feat is nothing new, really. In 2010, Aventura sold-out three shows at Madison Square Garden and headlined a total of four. In contrast, at the same time Lady Gaga performed four tour dates at the 6,000-capacity Radio City Music Hall, a smaller venue. Madison Square Garden has capacity for a little more than 19,000. Four years later in 2014, Romeo made history as a solo artist when he sold-out Yankee Stadium for two consecutive nights. Yankee Stadium can accommodate 50,000 people.
Romeo Santos came to prominence as the lead singer of Aventura. Prior to the formation of Aventura, four teens, brothers Lenny (lead guitar) and Max Santos (bass guitar), and composer vocalists cousins Henry and Romeo Santos teamed up and formed the musical group Los Teenagers. Although they recorded some songs under this name, the group did not find success until getting a complete makeover including being rechristened with a new name: Aventura. Generation Next became the group’s first album under Aventura, ushering a new era of bachata with songs such as “Cuando volverás,” “No lo perdona Dios,” “Alexandra,” “El coro dominicano,” and “Un poeta enamorado,” among other hits. Three years later in 2002, Aventura released their first true megahit, “Obesisión,” launching the group into superstardom. Aventura’s second album, We Broke the Rules, garnered the group a legion of fans that remains loyal until this very day with hits such as “Amor de madre,” “9:15” and “Perdí el control.” Avenutra “broke up” amicably in 2010 after the release of their sixth studio album, The Last. At MetLife Stadium, Romeo’s career came full circle.
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