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Emmanuel Gazmey Santiago, known professionally as Anuel AA, is a Puerto Rican-Colombian rapper and singer, a pioneer of the Latin trap movement. He won the 2019 Billboard Latin Music Award for New Artist of the Year.

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Early Life

Anuel AA was born in Carolina, Puerto Rico, and was friends with rapper Tempo. Gazmey studied at the Catholic school Colegio María Auxiliadora in Carolina. Gazmey showed great interest in music since his early teen years and in 2009 secured a record deal with Maybach Music Group.


Anuel released his first song "Demonia" in 2011. This was followed with several collaborations with Jory Boy, Magazeen, De La Ghetto, Arcángel and Ozuna.

Anuel rose to prominence following the hit "Esclava" alongside Bryant Myers, Almighty and Anonimus. His first single hit "Sola" was very well received and was followed by a remix featuring Daddy Yankee, Wisin, Farruko, and Zion & Lennox.

Gazmey's music theme relates to issues such as street life, violence, sex, and drugs. One of his most popular catchphrases in his songs is "Real Hasta la Muerte" or "Real Until Death". After being released from prison on July 17, 2018, Gazmey released his first full-length album titled Real Hasta la Muerte which contained 12 songs and landed at number one on the Billboard Top Latin Albums chart in less than 24 hours.

In August 2018, he released a song with the New York rapper 6ix9ine called "Bebe". In 2019, he was on his Real Hasta la Muerte, fourteen-city tour.

In September 2019, Meek Mill track with Anuel AA and Fabolous "Uptown Vibes" made it to the soundtrack of basketball video game NBA 2K20.


Gazmey was arrested and held in the Metropolitan Detention Center, Guaynabo on April 3, 2016 with three companions when police found three pistols including one stolen, nine magazines, and 152 bullets. He signed a plea deal for 30 months in federal prison for gun possession charges.

Following his arrest, the #FreeAnuel movement became viral among his fans as he continued to release tracks from prison. Being able to record his voice over the phone, Anuel AA mostly participated in collaborations with other artists such as Nicky Jam, Cosculluela, Bad Bunny and J Balvin.

While incarcerated, Gazmey spent 90 days in solitary confinement following an incident with another inmate.

During his trial, Gazmey stated that the lyrics in his music did not represent his true character. The presiding judge Aida Delgado-Colon said she had never heard any of his songs.

On March 2018, Gazmey was released from federal prison into a state prison in Miami. During this time, he told Billboard that while imprisoned, he kept listening to the radio and what was happening in the streets, to draw inspiration for his songwriting.

In April 2018, Anuel AA was featured along with Future and Bad Bunny on the single "Thinkin" by Spiff TV.


On September 15, 2018, Anuel AA released a diss track aimed at fellow rapper Cosculluela. The track was widely criticized due to its profanity and remarks about homosexuality and HIV patients. Due to the public backlash, Gazmey's concert at the Coliseo de Puerto Rico venue scheduled for October 12 of that year was canceled by his production staff and main producer Paco López. Gazmey later issued an apology for the song.

In early April 2019, Anuel AA and Ivy Queen engaged in an argument on Instagram after Anuel AA questioned how Ivy Queen could be still considered the "Queen of Reggaeton." Anuel argued she hadn't had a hit song in more than 7 years, and further questioned if Karol G should be considered another "Queen of Reggaeton." Followers on Instagram speculated about why he made the comments. Ivy Queen responded with comments about where she came from and how she was a pioneer, paving the way for other women to follow.

Personal Life

Anuel AA has a son named Pablo. He currently sustains a relationship with Colombian singer, Karol G.


  1. Real Hasta La Muerte (2018)

Awards and Nominations

Year Award Category Work Result
2019 Billboard Latin Music Awards New Artist of the Year Himself Won
Heat Latin Music Awards Won
Billboard Music Awards Top Latin Artist Nominated
Top Latin Album Real Hasta la Muerte Nominated


  1.  Leight, Elias; Leight, Elias (7 November 2017). "Inside Latin Trap, the Viral Sound Too Hot for American Radio".
  2. ^ Leight, Elias; Leight, Elias (12 September 2018). "How Puerto Rican Producer Tainy Became an Architect of Modern Reggaeton". Retrieved 11 June 2019.
  3. ^
  4. ^ "Anuel AA: El cantante de trap salió de la cárcel tras cumplir 30 meses de condena"[Anuel AA: The trap singer was released from prison after serving 30 months of sentence] (in Spanish). El Heraldo. 15 May 2018. Retrieved 29 December 2018.
  5. ^ Pacheco, Istra (2017-06-19). "Anuel AA sentenciado a 30 meses de cárcel" [Anuel AA sentenced to 30 months in prison]. Primera Hora (Puerto Rico) (in Spanish). Retrieved 2018-09-11.
  6. ^ Herrera, Isabelia (2018-07-18). "Anuel AA Opens Up About His Time in Prison in First Interviews After His Release"Remezcla. Retrieved 2018-09-11.
  7. ^ Centeno, Tony (2018-04-09). "Spiff TV Shares 'Thinkin' Feat. Future, Bad Bunny, Anuel AA"Vibe. Retrieved 2018-09-11.
  8. Jump up to:a b Fernandez, Suzette (13 September 2018). "Anuel AA Apologizes For Offensive Song Directed at Cosculluela: Watch". Retrieved 29 December 2018.
  9. ^ Herrera, Isabelia (April 8, 2019). "Ivy Queen Responds After Anuel AA Questions Her Title as the Queen of Reggaeton"Remezcla. Retrieved 6 June 2019.
  10. ^ Fernandez, Suzette (2019-04-09). "Anuel AA se enfrenta a Ivy Queen tras nombrar reina del reggaetón a Karol G" [Anuel AA faces Ivy Queen after naming reggaeton queen Karol G] (in Spanish). Retrieved 2019-04-21.
  11. ^ "Ivy Queen Responds After Anuel AA Questions Her Title as the Queen of Reggaeton"Remezcla. 8 April 2019.
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