That’s a wrap on Hispanic Heritage Month…BUT the celebration and continued uplifting of Latine communities must continue. Here are 10 party anthems, heartbreaking ballads and more from talented Latine artists (in no particular order) for your go-to Spotify playlist.
Artist: Liniker / Genre: Samba / Origin: Brazil
Liniker sings to a lover with a voice that swells and recedes with delicate softness and immense power. Her lyrics float along with the samba melody as she lovingly describes her wife. As a trans woman, she uses her platform to advocate for queer rights in Brazil: “I talk about love amidst all the violence we are subjected to.” I think this feel-good song is an excellent representation of Liniker’s important advocacy through her music platform.
Artist: Romeo Santos / Genre: Bachata / Origin*: Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico
The King of Bachata is back with his latest album, ‘Formula, Vol. 3.’ Number 13 on the album, “Sus Huellas,” is a remarkable representation of the album, with heart-wrenching lyrics where Santos demands his new partner help him rid his body of the traces of his past lover. The song is a testimony to excruciating heartbreak, with lyrics about how the only way for him to move on from the breakup is by tearing off his skin and burning his lips. The beat changes are immaculate, and when he sings “Ven arráncame estas penas,” you feel your heart skip a beat. As an avid Santos listener, and after having the album on repeat, I can say this is my new favorite song of his.
*Santos was born in the Bronx, New York City, to a Dominican father and a Puerto Rican mother. #NewYorRican
Sal y Perrea
Artist: Sech / Genre: Reggaetón / Origin: Panama
This song is an excellent addition to your going-out playlist! The title is a play on words where “sal” can mean salt or to go out. Either title translation works since Sech sings about a woman tired of being in a relationship; instead, she wants to go out and drink. I love this song because it’s a smooth perreo, so you can play it as a warm-up before really partying hard.
Artist: Maye / Genre: Pop / Origin: Venezuela
“Yours” transports the listener to a place where it’s just you and that special person. Every second you spend with them isn’t long enough; time slows when you look into their eyes. Perfection is being with them, being theirs, made for each other. I recommend this song to slow-dance with your s/o and have a main character moment.
Artist: El Alfa, Noriel & Trueno / Genre: Dembow / Origin: Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, Argentina
Each of these singers’ individual rapping demonstrates their distinctive flow, but the fluid beat expertly ties the sections together. The result is non-stop enjoyment. This is the perfect song to keep everyone out on the dance floor. You know how I said Sal y Perrea was a warm-up? Well, this song hypes you up for the night out. I recommend playing it on your way over to the party.
Don’t Talk About Me
Artist: Paloma Mami / Genre: Latin Trap / Origin: Chile
Paloma Mami’s elegant flow claps back at the haters. The smooth beat compliments her poetic lyrics about being unbothered by the hate she receives from those who say she’s “not Chilean enough.” I can testify that this song makes you feel like a baddie. So the next time you’re feeling down, press play on this song to get an instant mood boost!
Cumbia del Corazón
Artist: Los Ángeles Azules & Carlos Vives / Genre: Cumbia / Origin: Mexico, Colombia
Two music icons combine their musical talents to form the latest cumbia, which results in this energetic masterpiece! Get your dance partner out on the floor and get lost in each other’s rhythm, even after everyone has long left the floor. These two artists are some of my favorite cumbia singers, so I love that they collaborated to make this track!
Ande Con Quien Ande
Artist: Myke Towers & Jhay Cortez / Genre: Reggaetón / Origin: Puerto Rico
Towers and Cortez exude a seductive charm when singing about their sneaky links. The duo sings about a party girl who has it all. No matter who she’s with or where she’s at, one call, and he’s there – even if he has to drop “a la’ otra’ babie’.” Look no further for the latest song to add to your dancing playlist. When Towers sang, “Sé que le gusta la calle, janguear hasta tarde / Tiene a su corillo pa' quе la respalde,” I felt seen.
Artists: Yahritza Y Su Esencia & Ivan Cornejo / Genre: Regional Mexicano / Origin: Mexico
These teens, a sibling trio led by 15-year-old Yahritza and 17-year-old Cornejo, are revolutionizing the sound of Mexican music. This song has a bit of everything in it, from indie to corrido, and forms an entirely new sound. The combination of the gentle strumming with Yahritza and Cornejo’s sorrowful voices makes for a distinctive melancholy song. I love this song because it adds a unique sound to the regional mexicano genre.
Artist: Bad Bunny / Genre: Bomba, Ritmo Afrocaribeño Folclórico, EDM / Origin: Puerto Rico
It’s easy to get lost in the song’s catchy EDM chorus, but the true highlight of the piece lies in its overall message. Bad Bunny addresses pressing issues affecting Puerto Rico, like the continuous blackouts and gentrification. The music turns solemn, with Gabriela Berlingeri singing for the people gentrifying to leave. The song ends with a reminder that Puerto Rico belongs to Puerto Ricans: “This is my beach, this is my sun, this is my land, this is me.” Bad Bunny is a lyrical genius, and this song demonstrates his incredible sound and the power of using one's platform for change.
As you’re adding these songs to your playlist, remember showing pride and respect for Latine communities is a year-round commitment. To end on an inspirational note, here are some words from the great Benito Antonio Martínez Ocasio in El Apagón, “ahora todos quieren ser latino', no, ey / Pero les falta sazón.”