The 49-year-old ranchero singer revealed his diagnosis while accepting the Icon Award at the 2021 Latin American Music Awards on Thursday. After a video montage celebrating his decades-long career and achievements, he virtually joined the telecast and expressed his sadness over having to miss the award show.
"I really wanted to be there with you and pay tribute to my dear friend Joan Sebastian and perform my new single," he began. "But as we have learned in this complicated moment for humanity, sometimes our wishes can't be fulfilled. As many of you might know, I tested positive for COVID. I am doing well, asymptomatic, strong and in good spirits."
He then took a moment to remind and encourage people to get vaccinated and stressed that it's the only way we will get through these hard times. Fernández also thanked his team, his fans and supporters. He dedicated his Icon Award to all the immigrants and families who have been separated at the borders.
👏🏽 Una carrera inigualable la de ‘El Potrillo’, reconocido hoy con el Premio Ícono en la sexta edición de los #LatinAMAs.
Fernández, who has played a major part in bringing both rancheras and mariachi music to listeners all over the world and preserving the Mexican culture through his work, was described by the Latin AMAs as "an artist who interprets our life in his songs, forms an important part of Latin America’s history, and is considered a musical hero."
The award comes the same week that he announced his 19-date tour, Hecho en México, which kicks off on Sept.10 at the Grand Sierra Theatre in Reno, Nevada.
Last year, Fernández released Hecho en México (Made in Mexico), which debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard Top Latin Albums chart, making him the first artist to achieve this milestone in four different decades -- the '90s, '00s, '10s and '20s. Ahead of the release of his album, ET spoke with him about returning to his roots and producing a 100 percent ranchera and mariachi record after years of dabbling in the pop genre.
"I'm happy to be able to return to my origins," he exclusively told ET. "I had given myself a chance and time to experiment, and the public gave me the opportunity of being able to explore the pop genre. I created pop music for a long time and I really wanted to return to the ranchera genre. It had been, like, 15 years or more, and I think it was the right time to be able to do this. Plus, I felt I owed it to my audience, my fans, and to myself and Mexico. Also, my dad, two years ago, retired from making Mexican music, and I had to continue the legacy."