Sound: Salsa / tropical
Key Track: “Loco Pero Feliz”
Chart Success: In June 2014, reached No. 3 on Billboard’s Tropical Albums chart with Calle Linda.
Why We Should Care: Francisco "Pirulo" Rosado Rosario has revolutionized and revived the traditional salsa music of Puerto Rico, mixing street lyrics (Calle 13-style) with an old-school sensibility. The Puerto Rican native produced Tego Calderon's album El Abayarde Contra-ataca and has worked with different artists such as Giovanni Hidalgo, Anthony Carrillo, Pupi Santiago, Edgar Abraham and Puya. Pirulo's 2013 debut album Calle Linda (Pretty Street) showcased his skills as a singer, songwriter, producer and percussionist. A new album is due later this year.
Fun Fact: Not only sings salsa but also offers a variety of musical genres such as rumba, jazz and pop.
Sound: Neo-reggaeton/pop EDM
Key Track: “El No Te Da”
Chart Success: A top-five single in Spain, Dasoul’s “El No Te Da” could soon reverberate on the U.S. Latin charts.
Why We Should Care: The singer from the Canary Islands joins the ranks of J Balvin, Gente de Zona and other young artists behind an international movement that’s brought the tropical urban sound into the Latin pop mainstream. Dasoul has started his musical career with a string of songs designed for sharing: “El No Te Da” was the #1 Shazam track in Spain for three months running, has been played 13 million times on Spotify and more than 19 million times on YouTube. Not shy about promoting his music, Dasoul has so far performed more than 70 shows in 2015, and is planning appearances in Miami and other U.S. cities in the fall.
Fun Fact: Dasoul was an amateur boxer and served as a marine before setting his sights on a musical career.
Age: Melissa Robles (26), Pablo Preciado (27) and Roman Torres (28)
Sound: soulful, pop-folk ballads in the style of Jesse & Joy
Key Track: “La Misma Luna”
Chart Success: none yet
Why We Should Care: Named after the iconic French artist, Matisse brings a fresh and sunny outlook to Spanish-language pop. Hailing from Mexico, Preciado and Torres had already been writing heartfelt love songs for other artists including Alejandra Guzmán (“Mi Peor Error”) when they came across Robles’ ukulele-laced covers on YouTube. Since the release of their breakout single “La Misma Luna” in late 2014, the trio has collaborated with Noel Schajris (“Si Fuera Fácil”), opened forCamila, and penned/performed the theme song for a major telenovela (“La Malquerida” with Cristian Castro and Jesús Navarro of Reik). Matisse’s debut album arrives June 9 via Sony Music Mexico.
Fun Fact: Robles also has a fun blog where she shares fashion, beauty and lifestyle tips.
Victoria 'La Mala' Ortiz
Sound: banda with an urban swagger
Key Track: "Ni Como Amigos"
Chart Success: none yet
Why We Should Care: A relative newcomer to the male-dominated world of regional Mexican music, Victoria "La Mala" Ortiz is making a splash in banda with her impressive vocal range, street-savvy style and undeniable presence. The best way to describe her is, as she puts it, "if 2Pac and Selena had a child." The Mexico City native first started making waves in 2010 with her breakout single "Ahora Soy Mala." That same year, she earned a Newcomer of the Year nomination at Premios de la Radio. This summer, she's back with a new break-up anthem, "Ni Como Amigos." Ortiz says her nickname has a very important mission behind it: "There's no word in Spanish to describe a badass woman, so we're going to change 'la mala' from [meaning] bad to a badass, strong and independent woman who will fight for what she believes in."
Fun Fact: Ortiz has her own trademarked clothing line, MALA, with fun items like snapbacks and necklaces.