Latin music is mainly Spanish and Portuguese music made in Latin America, with the most popular contemporary artists being the Puerto Rican Bad Bunny and the Mexican Peso Pluma. The trend is global: in Finland too, many artists from Anna Abreu to Sanni and Robin to JVG have flirted with Latin rhythms.
Latin music has been one of the biggest breakthroughs in recent years in both the record and streaming business. In 2022, Latin music record sales topped $1 billion for the first time in the US, accounting for around 8% of music streaming.
Latin music fans also seem to be more enthusiastic than other fans about buying music merchandise such as t-shirts. According to a 2023 report by US market regulator Luminate, Latin music superfans spend on average 30% more on music consumption than other superfans.
Perhaps the clearest evidence of the rise in popularity of Latin music can be found in statistics published by Spotify last month. They show that the number of Latin music listeners on Spotify grew by 986% worldwide between 2014 and 2023.
Ten years ago, Spotify’s global top 100 did not include any Spanish-language songs. In 2023, more than one in five of Spotify’s top 100 songs were in Spanish.
The rise of Latin music could have wider implications for the music business, as many of the genre’s big names are shunning traditional record labels. They are building their businesses themselves or demanding deals that give them more decision-making power and money.
A good example is Latin music superstar Bad Bunny. He doesn’t have a deal with a major label, yet he plays to sold-out stadiums and 12 of his songs have been streamed over a billion times on Spotify. That’s more than any other artist in Spotify’s history.