Born-in-Colombia sounds like cumbia, vallenato, currulao and champeta (to name just a few), and, of course, Colombia’s hot recipe for salsa, make the country’s music patriotic by nature. The South American country has a tradition of songs whose lyrics celebrate national identity and probe the country’s social history at the same time as they party hard, making for an infinite Colombian Independence Day playlist. Here, are 20 fiesta-ready songs to get the July 20th celebration started.
Let freedom dance with the great Fruko y sus Tesos.
Carlos Vives says it all: “Vamos a gozar”
J Balvin’s latest hit salutes his people.
“Yo Voy Ganao”
The video for outfit Systema Solar’s deep-rooted dance song about the advantages of fishing from a canoe off Colombia’s coast over making a million dollars in New York could have you packing your bags.
“Pollera Colora” is often called Colombia’s national anthem. Here, maestro Lucho Bermudez delivers a hot live version on Colombian television, circa 1960s.
The great Joe Arroyo ensured the remembrance of the struggle of slaves in Colombia with this immortal salsa track.
Bomba Estereo’s single has been adopted as an anti-bullying anthem. Its message is perfect for Independence Day: Be yourself.
All roads lead to Cali in this Grupo Niche party classic.
“Yo Me Llamo Cumbia”
National treasure Toto la Momposina is cumbia incarnate.
Shakira and Carlos Vives’ love letter to Baranquilla.
“Dedonde Vengo Yo”
ChocQuibTown’s irresistible pride and party song is dedicated to the artists’ native Chocó.
“Vive a Tu Manera”
Herencia de Timbiquí’s slow, swaying freedom song.
Mr. Black’s urban party hit.
Juanes recorded this patriotic rock anthem with his early band Ekhymosis.
A tribute to Miriam Makeba, and James Brown, from the fantastically funky ’70s project Myrian Makenwa.
“Bailame Como Quieras”
A dance floor declaration of independence from The Latin Brothers.
A national holiday is a great excuse to move your cucu.
Elio Boom’s vintage champeta is guaranteed to get your motor running.
“Always dance freely,” Esteman urges in this 2016 track.
The classic dancefloor song performed by the celebrated cumbiabero Gabriel Romero.