As we enter the month of July, we looked to our Latin charts and our iPod lists to find our very top picks for Latin summer songs. And while this is definitely a season for dance, we found plenty of romance as well.
Read on for the Latin Notas staff picks of 10 Latin songs of the summer to include on your playlist, in no particular order.
“Vivir Mi Vida,” Marc Anthony
Anthony’s return to salsa is not your typical salsa track, but more a “baila baila,” feel-good track. “Vivir Mi Vida” is a celebration of life and an ode to happiness and optimism. As an industry observer put it, “it’s the kind of song people want to sing in stadiums.” The good vibes worked. Marc Anthony premiered “Vivir Mi Vida” at the Billboard Latin Music Awards in April, and the track subsequently premiered on Univision stations nationwide. It has topped Billboard’s Hot Latin Songs chart for eight consecutive weeks.
"Te Gusta,” Grupo Treo featuring Elijah King
Tropical rhythm? Check. Electronic dance beat? Check. Reggaeton? Check. Bilingual lyrics? Check. Pop melody? Check. Senseless sing along chorus (“Na Na Na Na Na Na”)? Check. Works for Zumba classes? Check. Video with girls in bikinis? Check. Venezuela’s Grupo Treo have put just about every element for a summer hit into one track, and it works. A hands-in-the-air success.
“Limbo,” Daddy Yankee
Yankee penned this track specifically for the Zumba fitness program, and although it peaked on the chart at the beginning of the year, it shows no sign of abating. “Limbo” spent a total of 15 weeks at No. 1 on Billboard’s Hot Latin Songs chart, and today, it remains on the chart’s top five. In the meantime, the Puerto Rican star also released “Summertime” (not a cover of the original). On the contrary, at press time, “Limbo” was still one of the five top Latin songs in the country, thanks to an infectious dance beat and worldwide recognition and, not to be scoffed at, over 114 million views on YouTube.
“Allí Estaré (I’ll Be There),” Arthur Hanlon, feat. Karlos Rosé
Several 1950s and ‘60s tracks have been converted to bachata, but Hanlon’s take on “Ill Be There” is a departure. Born and raised in Detroit, Hanlon brings his Motown piano to bachata, and with the help of pop/dance arrangements, and the production of David Cabrera (Ricky Martin), this version of “I’ll Be There” works in most any summer setting, from club to beach to romantic night. Add Karlos Rosé’s sweet vocals and you get a Michael Jackson resemblance with distinct personality. Both Hanlon and Rosé have topped Billboard’s tropical airplay charts before with memorable dance tracks. This week, “I’ll Be There” enters the Top 10 and seems on its way to become an encore performance for both artists.
“Sin Tí,” Chino y Nacho
The Venezuelan duo is known for their blend of almost innocent romance with danceable beats. “Sin Ti” is a love song, set to a lilting merengue beat. Its lyrics are sweet and effective, its beat irresistible. If summer songs are meant to be as romantic as they are danceable, then this is the right combination. “Sin Ti,” currently sitting at No. 21 on the Hot Latin songs chart, is climbing.