Patience is a rare virtue in the music business. But Mexican pop trio Camila has benefited from taking things slowly not once, but twice. In May 2006, the group released its debut album, “Todo Cambio,” and watched it do next to nothing at first. It took a year for the release to enter Billboard’s Top Latin Albums chart and then climb steadily to
the top five, eventually selling nearly 400,000 U.S. copies, according to Nielsen SoundScan. But instead of quickly capitalizing on that success and rushing out a sophomore disc, Camila took its time, and on February 9 its follow-up, “Dejarte de Amar,” will be released in the United States and throughout Latin America on Sony Latin. The release is one of Sony’s biggest priorities for the year. Thanks to its stake in entertainment/management company Westwood Entertainment, Sony effectively manages Camila and has a share in all its revenue streams, including touring.
Camila comprises lead singer/composer/keyboardist Mario Domm, vocalist Samo and guitarist Pablo Hurtado. The group’s sound, a blend of R&B-tinged vocals and a Latin pop sensibility, has found a following among a younger audience that favors boy bands as well as with adult listeners who enjoy the group’s well-crafted, often complex melodies. If “Todo Cambio” was challenging at first listen for an audience that simply wasn’t used to this kind of sound from a Latin pop group, the follow-up is lusher and more heavily arranged. It took Camila this long to produce a second album in large part because the group simply got busier with promotional appearances and shows as its success expanded. Still, it was clearly time for a follow-up, and “Dejarte” initially was slated for release in December 2009. But the members began to feel pressured, and Domm asked for more time. Sony granted the request and instead released the first single, “Mientes,” in mid-November. The track rose on the Latin American charts, reaching No. 3 in Mexico,
according to Westwood co-founder Jorge Juarez. Stateside, the track entered Billboard’s Hot Latin Songs chart at No. 45 in December and is No. 21 on the latest edition of the chart.
Those who purchase the CD single will find three versions on the disc, including a karaoke version that fans can record a video to and upload to Camila’s Web site to compete for a meet-and-greet with the act. “We have a lot of visual material documenting Camila from the past several years, and we’ve exploited all of it on the Internet to very strong reaction,” Juarez says. Camila’s online popularity is the basis of a partnership with Toyota that will feature several online video clips where Camila touts Toyota and which will be posted on Camila’s YouTube channel. Camila is also beginning a relationship with Converse in Mexico (the group is wearing Converse shoes and getting a sponsorship fee) and is continuing its successful partnership with Verizon Wireless, which previously offered its customers exclusive mobile content in connection with the group’s first U.S. headlining tour in 2008.
Among other initiatives, Verizon will support the release of “Dejarte de Amar” with a private showcase for radio contest winners in Los Angeles during the last week of February. Camila is supplying the mobile carrier with exclusive content for subscribers, including ringtones and behind-the-scenes footage, and Verizon will be a sponsor of the group’s tour, which is slated to kick off in late spring or early summer. Camila’s music is also being featured in the telenovela “Corazon Salvaje,” and talks are under way to have one of the album’s singles used as the theme of another upcoming Televisa soap. “I consider myself a very fortunate artist,” Domm says. “We’ve had total support from the label, and I feel that Sony’s commitment to us has a foundation, and I feel I’ve done my job. I think this model of making music and selling it is coming to an end, but we were able to squeeze in before the door shut, and now, I’m part of a new model.”