Take a look at the music scene in 2017, and it was dominated by one song. “Despacito” has been streamed five billion times, has three billion views on YouTube and is the first Spanish-speaking song to go number one since “Macarena.” And, Bieber, Fonsi and Yankee aren’t the only people to take advantage as Little Mix and Camila Cabello have both released tracks to acclaim. Considering Little Mix is a band consisting of British women, it’s safe to say there is a market for Latin music in English-speaking countries.
But, what’s behind the current trend?
The next time you find yourself in a bar in Puerto Rico, just keep an eye on your limbs. Arms and legs that you control will start to tap uncontrollably without any hesitation. Upon further inspection, you’ll come to notice that local music is playing in the background and your body is moving to the beat. One thing the current cluster of Spanish-infused songs has in common is a genuine beat which invokes memories of far-flung beaches. Just listen to “Havana” by Cabello and than try and say the horns don’t hit the nail on the head. As it turns out, Ed Sheeran isn’t the only one with a skill for composing.
New, Emerging Markets
Take out the terms “Bieber” and “Little Mix” and you’ve got real Latinos and Latinas. Yankee and Fonsi are Puerto Rican, while former Fifth Harmony singer Cabello is Cuban. Yes, they are American too in many respects, but they have a deep pull to their countries of birth. And, they aren’t the only examples as the likes of J-Lo and Shakira are money-spinners too. As globalization hits, these brands are bound to appeal to a wider market. Aside from the Westerners who are being introduced to the music, there’s a mix of regulars who can’t get enough. Together, it’s a powerful combo.
In the past, exposure may have been regulated through Radio and TV. MTV was a massive hit in the early 200s and now it’s power is dwindling. The reason is the rise of mobile devices. People don’t listen to music on the radio on television anymore; they listen to Spotify. A company such as HelloWorld can use this to an artist’s advantage and raise awareness of their brand in a matter of minutes. And, it isn’t only phones that play a part because iPads and tablets are also involved. With an internet connection, people can access any genre from anywhere on the planet.
There’s a viral video on YouTube which backs up this theory. A girl is walking and hears “Despacito” come on. Without missing a beat, she breaks into dance in the middle of the street. Obviously, views of the short clip skyrocketed and Bieber benefited as a result. He couldn’t fail when 20 million people flocked to the video. Memes, vines etc. are impacting tastes and they come through social media platforms.
What do you think? Is Latin music here to stay ?