The Ricky Martin and Simon Cowell managed band credits "Despacito" for helping grow interest in their group -- and calls on more American artists to do the same.
The five-man group, whose fan base thrives mostly in Latin America and Europe, says it's the touch of American artists that's helping put Latin music on the U.S. map.
"Thanks to the remix that we did with Little Mix, it kind of opened the doors for us to be more known in the U.S. and other countries and Europe," group member Joel Pimentel told TooFab. "And thanks to 'Despacito,' people are listening to a lot more music in Spanish."
And it seems their remix with British girl group Little Mix has proven even more fruitful than maybe CNCO even anticipated. The group's original song, "Reggaetón Lento (Bailemos)," currently has 1.2 billion views on YouTube. And while CNCO is still billions of views short of "Despacito," their YouTube views are still towering over popular American artists including Taylor Swift ("Look What You Made Me Do" has 867 million views), Drake ("God's Plan" has 140 million views) and Camila Cabello ("Havana" has 543 million views).
"Thanks to American artists that are willing to collab and bring out that Latin culture, that Latin music -- we're just blessed to have that, to have people that are actually looking at us and saying, 'Hey, that's actually pretty dope. I wanna join you guys. I wanna show this to the world,'" group member Richard Camacho said.
The guys said they'd love to someday join musical forces with Chris Brown, Liam Payne, DJ Khaled, Drake and The Weeknd, but as of right now, their hearts are set on their fellow Latina, Señorita Cabello.
CNCO first got their start back in December 2015 after winning the first season of Univision's talent competition show, "La Banda." Ricky Martin -- who was one of the show's producers -- now manages and mentors CNCO, as does Simon Cowell. The boys say they could not be in better hands.
"We've learned a lot [from Ricky], but mostly about his humbleness," Richard said. "The way he keeps his ground is insane. After everything that he's been through throughout his whole career, he's still so grounded. We met him and we didn't expect him to be so welcoming and so human because people see those kind of artists with that kind of trajectory as something else. But that was the most important thing that he told us -- always keep our ground and remember where we come from and to love what we do and always have passion for what we're doing, and to rest. But just to see how hard he works inspires us every day. To have that mentor around us is a blessing."
"He always finds a way to communicate with us," Joel added. "Before shows, he FaceTimes us. Like we were just in Viña Del Mar, one of the biggest festivals in Latin America, and he called to congratulate us, giving us tips with what to do before we go on stage. But we're always in communication with Ricky.
CNCO is nominated for four iHeart Radio Music Awards, which are being held in Los Angeles this Sunday, and is gearing up to release their self-titled sophomore album on April 6.