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Alba ‘Albita’ Egan, Beloved Grand Dame of Latin Music PR, Dies at 69

todayJanuary 4, 2023

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Alba Egan, the genial public and talent relations executive who was instrumental in boosting the careers of Chayanne, Ricky Martin and Juan Gabriel, among many others, has died after a long struggle with kidney disease. Egan passed away at her Miami home on Sunday evening (Jan. 1).  She was 69.

A no-nonsense but cheerful woman, Egan — widely known as Albita — was easily identifiable by her signature bright red hair (which would later turn gray) as she helped some of Latin music’s biggest stars navigate the media. As one of the first women to head press and publicity divisions at major labels, Egan worked at BMG Latin, Sony Discos and EMI Latin in Miami, coordinating campaigns for artists ranging from Ricardo Montaner to Shakira. Egan, who was born in Cuba and immigrated to the U.S. as a child, at one point managed the career of beloved Mexican icon Gabriel, with whom she remained close until his death in 2016.

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Many of Latin music’s most prominent publicists credit Egan with having opened major doors for them in their profession.

“She was one of the most beloved people in the music industry,” says publicist Marlene Maseda, founder and COO of Fusion 4 Media. “She was a pioneer who, with her originality and creativity, climbed to the peak of her profession in every label she worked with […] As a professional, she was one of the few who always helped others and who was genuinely happy for others’ success.”

Egan’s Facebook page was flooded with homage posts and anecdotes from people from all walks of the industry.

“She was a mentor to me and it surprised me to see that she was a mentor to so many,” wrote Nevarez Communications founder Mayna Nevarez, whose client list includes Daddy Yankee, recalling that Egan would often call to give her pointers after seeing her clients in the media.

“You always had the perfect word of advice, and sometimes, the perfect word to calm one down. I take your advice very deeply with me,” wrote Nini Veras, who reps Nicky Jam, among others.

“Elegant,” “generous,” “respect” and “loyalty” are the words that recur again and again in the many posts on Egan’s page.

“You were an icon in the music industry loved and respected by many…You always had a way with words and were giving out constant encouragement and kind compliments to your friends,” wrote Angela Rodríguez, founder of AR Entertainment.

Egan’s last job in the industry was as a talent booker at TV network America TV, closing an extraordinary professional arc that began in the 1980s and that covered multiple generations of artists and executives.

“We met in this amazing music industry world at the end of the 1980s, and since then, we were colleagues and competition, but always friends,” wrote Alvaro Rizo, the former president of EMI Colombia. “You only ever spoke sweet words and generous comments, and always, that broad smile.”

Egan’s funeral arrangements will be announced in the coming days.

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todayJanuary 4, 2023

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