Artists and insiders discuss what led up to 's Latin-pop explosion, and what the success of "Despacito" and other songs means for music going forward. Within a year, Ocean had a global smash and a record deal with Warner Music Group. This rapid ascent was just one impressive example of viral successes for Latin pop in a year full of them. On YouTube, six of the top 10 most-viewed music videos globally were made by Latin artists — as opposed to just one in — as were 45 of the Top The U. According to artists and executives at both streaming platforms and major labels, several factors conspired to make the year of Spanish-language pop.
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“El Amante” – Nicky Jam
Daddy Yankee collaborated with Snoop Dogg on "Gangsta Zone" back in 2005.
It was an urban, urban, urban year for Latin music, with some form of reggaeton dominating almost all the Latin charts. They weren't alone. The result is a list that roughly splits into three categories: reggaeton-based songs the majority , regional Mexican songs, which largely defy the whims of trends, and Romeo Santos , who is in a genre-defying league of his own with his unique brand of bachata. But overwhelmingly, that underlying reggaeton beat has become the new pop, a trend that has been long in the making and that shows no sign of abating, despite multiple calls for a change of scenery. A change of scenery will eventually take place, as is always the case with music and trends. Meantime, however, there's nothing wrong with celebrating the power and popularity of a genre that's flexible, appealing, and has revitalized Latin music and opened the doors to new collaborations, new faces and new experimentation like never before. It's ironic that the year in Latin charts very closely mirrors the year in charts. That was also the year when, for the first time ever, an urban music producer production duo LunnyTunes , topped the Hot Latin Songs Producers chart.
Top Latin Songs
Reggaeton first surfaced in Panama in the s and quickly took on a vibrant life of its own. As the genre found footholds in Colombia, Puerto Rico, and the United States, it also welcomed new talents and sounds. In the years to follow, the reggae-dancehall fusion solidified as a prevailing cultural movement with its own language, symbols, and artistic identity. In , Spotify recognized this rapidly growing movement and created the Baila Reggaeton playlist. Now, seven years later, the playlist has skyrocketed—much like the genre itself—and has now reached 10 million followers. Two reggaeton artists Daddy Yankee and J Balvin have even become the number-one-streamed artist on Spotify globally following the release of their hits on the playlist. But these milestones are only the tip of the reggaeton iceberg. The top 10 songs streamed on the playlist from January 1, , to now encompass many of the artists who make up the sounds of the genre.
The influence of the United States looms large, with the Latin diaspora often filtering through the U. But the scales have balanced, and the cultural exchange between Anglo and Spanish-language music is bi-directional. What follows is a brief — and by no means all-encompassing — primer on some of the most important artists in urbano, broken up into three categories: The superstars at the top of the charts, the OGs who helped create and sustain the community, and the next wave of new artists and underground veterans set to break out in the coming months. J Balvin. You will almost certainly recognize him for his ever-changing colorful hair most notably, his rainbow leopard and zebra-print pattern cuts. Bad Bunny. Anuel AA. El General. Vico C. Daddy Yankee.