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8 Reasons Prince Royce Rules Right Now

The 26-year-old bachata sensation is making a play to be the latest Latin crossover with his debut English album 'Double Vision'—but he's already winning in his own right

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An all-star cast came out for his debut English album

By all definitions, Prince Royce is a new artist on the pop scene. Which is why the lineup for his debut English album Double Vision is so impressive: Snoop DoggPitbullTygaKid Ink and Jennifer friggen Lopez. He also recorded but ultimately passed on a collaboration with Chris Brown. Dude's got A-list approval.

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Ariana hearts him

For the second North American leg of her Honeymoon Tour, Ariana Grande picked none other than Royce as the special guest opening act. 

Royce will not only get to show off his new pop songs on the humongous summer tour, but has promised to expose the Arianators in attendance to some of the bachata hits that made him a sensation in the Latin community too.

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His social stats are cray

Prince Royce boasts 32 million followers on Facebook, 4.34 million on Twitter and 2.2 million on Instagram. For those keeping score, that combined number means every post on his social media accounts creates more impressions than there are people in Canada. 

Just watch the power of his presence in the above Instagram video (which has earned 39,000 likes to date) where he meets a mob of screaming fans.

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His backstory is inspiring

Prince Royce (né Geoffrey Royce Rojas) was the second of four children raised by a taxicab-driver father and a hairdresser mother in a public housing project in an underprivileged neighborhood in the Bronx. Royce has spoken about his childhood, saying that when he'd visit his grandparents in the Dominican Republic, he'd bathe with buckets. "We understood that we were poor," he told Billboard earlier this year

At age 18, lil Geoff got a job selling cell phones and he saved up enough money to record his own bachata album, which helped him get signed by Sergio George, who is revered in the Latin music industry and has worked with everyone from Celia Cruz and Tito Nieves to Jennifer Lopez and Marc Anthony.

See how far the now-26-year-old has come with this reflective performance of his single "Soy el Mismo"—"I Am the Same," the title track to his third studio LP. The background's decorated with photos of Royce as child.

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He's 'The Voice' for kids

MIAMI, FL - MAY 02: (L-R) Prince Royce, Jorge Bernal, Paulina Rubio, Daisy Fuentes and Roberto Tapia attend a press conferenc
Gustavo Caballero/Getty Images

You know how only the most prolific artists get to be coaches on The Voice? Same goes for La Voz, the Spanish version of the singing competition that also got a children-only version with La Voz Kids. Royce was a coach for Seasons 1 and 2 of the series alongside Regional Mexican singer Robert Tapia and Mexican pop diva Paulina Rubio.

Even better: Young singer Amanda Mena, who was coached by the superstar, won Season 2 and snagged a contract with Universal Music Latin.

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He's helping promising young talent

In mid-2014, the singer launched his own record label, D'Leon, under Warner Latin Music. Royce personally asked Mexican teen singer Sofia Reyes to join as its first artist. The promising 19-year-old has dropped two very hot, bilingual singles on the label (2014's Wisin-featuring "Muevelo" and her summer single "Conmigo," above) and looks poised to follow in Royce's footsteps. 

"I have been very fortunate to have been able to break through and succeed in this tough industry," Royce said at the label's launch. "This is one of my ways of giving back."

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He has excellent taste in video games

Gamers play Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3Ds at the annual E3 video game extravaganza in Los Angeles, California on June 10
FREDERIC J. BROWN/AFP/Getty Images

Super Smash Bros. is his favorite. 'Nuff said.

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He's aware of the major challenges of his new album

Getty Images

Royce knows that for every successful crossover story, there's loads that don't catch the same break. And while his attempts might draw comparisons to Ricky Martin or Selena, their journeys to break into Top 40 land are totally separate.

"Ricky Martin went from Spanish pop to English pop; same rhythm, different language," he explained earlier this year. "For me, it's a different language and a different rhythm, which makes it twice the challenge."

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BRIDGETOWN, BARBADOS - DECEMBER 01:  Singer Rihanna and Prince Harry speak on stage at the 'Man Aware' event held by the Barb

Dec. 1: Rih & The Prince in Barbados

In Barbados Rihanna and Prince Harry raise HIV/AIDS awareness in hopes to fight HIV and AIDS stigma. Getting tested in front of cameras, the singer and the prince show us the importance and ease of the process. "It's so easy to get tested & know your status!” Rih tweeted afterwards. Today also marks the 50th Anniversary of Independence in Barbados.

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