Latin Music is Taking Over the Billboard Charts

This article is a collaborative effort, crafted and edited by a team of dedicated professionals.

Contributors: Andranick Tanguiane, Fred Lerdahl,


It’s official: Latin music is taking over the Billboard charts! In the past year, we’ve seen huge hits from artists like Luis Fonsi, J Balvin, and Ozuna, and it looks like the trend is here to stay. If you’re a fan of Latin music, then you’ll want to check out our latest blog post, which breaks down the top Latin songs of the moment.


Latin music is enjoying a moment in the spotlight, with several artists dominating the Billboard charts. In the last few years, we’ve seen a surge in popularity for Latin music, with artists like Luis Fonsi, J Balvin, and Ozuna crossing over into the mainstream.

This surge in popularity is reflected in the Billboard charts, where Latin music is now dominating. In the last month, seven of the top ten songs on the Hot 100 were by Latin artists, and three of those wereby Spanish-speaking artists. This is a unprecedented level of success for Latin music, and it shows no signs of slowing down.

With such a strong showing on the Billboard charts, it’s clear that Latin music is here to stay. If you’re not already familiar with these artists, now is the time to start listening!

History of Latin Music in the U.S.

Latin music has been present in the United States since the 19th century, when the first Cuban immigrants arrived in the country. However, it wasn’t until the 20th century that Latin music began to gain mainstream popularity. In the 1950s, Cuban singer Miguelito Valdés became the first Latin artist to achieve commercial success in the U.S. with his album “Babalú.” Since then, Latin music has continued to grow in popularity, with artists like Gloria Estefan, Ricky Martin, and Shakira achieving global stardom.

Pre-20th century

The music now known as Latin music had its beginnings in the fifteenth century, when the first hymns (villancicos) and secular songs (romances) of Spanish and Portuguese origin were brought to Mexico by settlers and missionaries. These early works were heavily influenced by the music of Spain and Portugal, as well as by that of indigenous peoples of the Americas. The first major wave of Latin American immigration to the United States occurred in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, when large numbers of Mexicans came to the Southwest in search of work. Mexican immigrants brought with them many different kinds of music, including mariachi, ranchera, conjunto, and Tejano.

20th century

Beginning in the early 20th century, Latin music in the United States began to take on its own character with the development of various regional styles such as Tejano, conjunto and norteño in Texas, mambo and cha-cha-cha in New York, and salsa in Puerto Rico. In addition, a number of important developments took place within the Latin music industry itself, including the rise of independent record labels and the popularity of live music venues.

Latin music began to achieve mainstream success in the United States during the 1950s, thanks in part to the establishment of radio stations that played only Latin music and to the increasing number ofLatin American immigrants who were moving to the country. Key figures during this period include bandleader Xavier Cugat, who popularized mambo music; singer Tito Puente, who helped make salsa a household word; and Desi Arnaz, whose hit TV show I Love Lucy introduced millions of Americans to Latin rhythms.

During the 1960s and 1970s, a number of important changes took place within the Latin music industry. The popularity of rock en español (Spanish-language rock music) increased, resulting in the rise of such artists as Santana and Gloria Estefan. In addition, disco began to make inroads into the Latin market with songs like “La Disco Tyqui” by Cuban singer/songwriter Miguel Matamoros.

The 1980s saw a renewed interest in traditional Latin musical styles such as mariachi and bolero. This was due in part to the popularity of movies like The Mambo Kings (1992) and The House of Bernarda Alba (1987), which helped increase public awareness of these genres. In addition, a number of young Hispanics were drawn to rap and hip-hop music during this decade, resulting in the rise of artists like Cypress Hill and Kid Frost.

The 1990s were a tremendously productive period for Latin music in the United States. By this time, salsa had become one of the most popular forms of dance music among Latinos and non-Latinos alike; meanwhile, pop en español was beginning to make significant headway on radio and television. Important figures during this time include Ricky Martin,whose album A Medio Vivir (1995) ushered in a new era of pop en español; Selena Quintanilla-Pérez,”Queen of Tejano Music”; Gloria Estefan,”Queen Of Miami Sound”; Marc Anthony,”Salsa King”; Jennifer Lopez,”Latina Pop Princess”.

21st century

The 21st century has seen a huge increase in the popularity of Latin music in the United States. In 2010, a record-breaking 12 songs by Latin artists topped the Billboard Hot 100 chart, more than any other year in history. Since then, Latin music has continued to grow in popularity, with many artists finding success on the Hot 100 and other charts.

One of the most successful Latin artists of the 21st century is Shakira. She is a Colombian singer, songwriter, and dancer who rose to fame in the early 2000s with her debut album, Laundry Service. Since then, she has released several more albums that have been hugely successful both in the U.S. and internationally. Shakira has won multiple Grammy Awards and is one of the best-selling Latin artists of all time.

Other popular Latin artists include Ricky Martin, Jennifer Lopez, and Pitbull. These artists have all found success with crossover hits that have appeal beyond just the Latin music market. AsLatin music continues to grow in popularity, it is likely that we will see even more crossover success stories in the years to come.

The Latin music explosion of the past few years

It’s been a few years since the Latin music explosion and it’s showing no signs of slowing down.In fact, it’s only getting bigger and bigger. The Billboard charts are proof of that. These days, it’s not uncommon to see a Latin song in the top 10. And it’s not just Latin music that’s doing well.

Reasons for the increase in popularity

Though it has been around for centuries, Latin music has seen a recent explosion in popularity, especially in the United States. There are a few reasons for this increased popularity.

For one, the Spanish-speaking population in the U.S. has been growing rapidly in recent years. According to the Pew Research Center, the Hispanic population in the U.S. grew by 58% between 2000 and 2017, and Hispanics are now the largest minority group in the country. As the Hispanic population has grown, so has the demand for Latin music.

In addition, Latin music is becoming more mainstream thanks to crossover hits from artists like Luis Fonsi, Daddy Yankee, and Justin Bieber. These artists have brought Latin music to a wider audience and helped make it more popular than ever before.

Finally, streaming services like Spotify and Apple Music have made it easier than ever to find and listen to Latin music. With just a few clicks, anyone can discover a new favorite Latin artist or song.

As Latin music continues to grow in popularity, it’s likely that we’ll see even more crossover hits and mainstream success stories in the years to come.

The rise of streaming services

It’s no secret that the Latin music explosion of the past few years can be attributed in large part to the rise of streaming services. According to a report from the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA), Latin music streaming revenues grew by an impressive 45% in 2017, thanks in part to the growing popularity of subscription-based services like Spotify and Apple Music.

But it’s not just streaming services that are responsible for the recent boom in Latin music sales. The RIAA report also notes that physical sales of Latin music grew by 8% in 2017, thanks in part to a strong showing from vinyl records. In fact, vinyl sales now account for nearly 20% of all physical Latin music sales, which is up from just 5% in 2016.

What’s driving this boom in Latin music sales? In addition to the growing popularity of streaming services, experts point to a number of factors, including an increase in tourism to Latin American countries, the success of crossover hits like Luis Fonsi’s “Despacito” and J Balvin’s “Mi Gente,” and a burgeoningLatinx population in the United States.


To conclude, Latin music is clearly taking over the Billboard charts. With so many different genres and subgenres of Latin music to choose from, there is something for everyone. Whether you’re a fan of reggaeton, salsa, bachata, or any other type of Latin music, you’re sure to find a song that you can’t get enough of. So make sure to check out the Billboard charts and see what’s hot in Latin music today.

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