The Year in Latin Music 2017: Hidden Gems From Around the World (Critic's Picks)

Charly Garcia

Charly Garcia performs in Zapopan, Mexico on May 28, 2010. 

In a year where Billboard’s Latin charts were dominated by urban beats, all things “Despacito,” and newcomers like Bad Bunny and Ozuna, there was also a bevy of Latin music from around the world that may have missed the charts in 2017 but made a critical impression. Those under-the-radar tunes hailed from the likes of Spain, Argentina, Chile, Puerto Rico, Peru, Uruguay and beyond.

Among those hidden gems: Rock tracks from Argentina's Charly García and Colombia’s Diamante Eléctrico that snarl with euphoria, Spanish pop-rock songs that are poetic narratives by Vetusta Morla and blends of electrolatin with flamenco sound by Demarco Flamenco. There’s also Peruvian pop-rock songs by Pepe Alva and Kanaku y El Tigre that masterfully dive into its roots, a taunting Chilean folk-pop song from Fernando Milagros and Dominican Alex Ferreira’s “Ven Que Te Quiero Ver” that bounces with Caribbean beats. Plus, there’s vintage-glam rock by garage-pop singer AJ Dávila, and the always playful Céu blends her Brazilian swag with synth-pop.

Here’s a look at 11 of our favorite Latin tunes from around the world: 

1. Charly García – “La Máquina de Ser Feliz” from Random (Argentina)


2. Kanaku y El Trigre – “Si Te Mueres Mañana” from Quema Quema Quema (Peru)


3. Vetusta Morla – “La Vieja Escuela” from Mismo Sitio, Distinto Lugar (Spain)


4. Céu - “Arrastarte-Ei” from Tropix (Brazil)


5. No Te Va A Gustar – “Y El Mundo Me Comió a Mi” from Suenan Las Alarmas (Uruguay)?


6. Pepe Alva- “Constelación” from Distinto Viaje (Peru)?


7. Alex Ferreira – “Ven Que Te Quiero Ver” from Canapé (Dominican Republic)


8. Demarco Flamenco – “La Isla del Amor” from Uno (Spain)


9. Fernando Milagros – “Nube Blanca” (feat. Kanaku Y El Tigre) from Milagros (Chile)


10. Diamante Eléctrico – “Déjala Rodar” from La Gran Osicilación (Colombia)


11. AJ Dávila – “Beautiful” from El Futuro (Puerto Rico)

Billboard Year in Music 2017


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