From career milestones and new music releases to major announcements and more, Billboard editors highlight the latest news buzz in Latin music every week. Here’s what happened in the Latin music world this week.
J Balvin gets emotional in Switzerland
While on tour in Europe, the Colombian star was joined by three kids onstage during his stop in Switzerland to sing “La Canción.” The sweet moment was captured on video, which Balvin shared on his social media captioning it with a sweet message: “I’ll never stop being amazed. To see a kid who is 10 years old that doesn’t speak Spanish … Better said, the video speaks for itself. Thank you Switzerland. Latino Gang,” he wrote.
See the video here.
Shakira to receive special award
The Colombian superstar is set to be honored with the “Agent of Change” recognition at the 20th anniversary of Premios Juventud, Univision announced. The “Monotonía” singer — who with her Fundación Pies Descalzos has helped underserved communities in Colombia — will receive the award during the ceremony that will air live on Univision from the Coliseo de Puerto Rico José Miguel Agrelot on Thursday, July 20. Previous “Agent of Change” honorees include Maluma, Kany Garcia, The Jenni Rivera Foundation, Ricky Martin and Becky G, among others.
Peso Pluma is Billboard‘s latest cover
The “Bye” singer is the latest star to grace the cover of Billboard. Peso, Mexican music’s biggest star today, talks about leading the genre’s global takeover, his plans for the future and tells the story behind his now famous mullet-like haircut.
“I’m very happy to do what I love doing the most and to be able to share a message of perseverance with up-and-coming artists. Sometimes, as Mexicans, we put a lot of barriers on ourselves and we lack the confidence,” Peso said. “Today, I see that people are proud of our movement. Back then, they’d think that Mexicans couldn’t have a No. 1 song singing corridos and that regional Mexican music was only regional, not global. Today, all those barriers have been broken.”
Read all about “The Power of Peso” here.
Karol G‘s new single “S91,” which she dropped on July 13, is inspired by the Psalm 91 Bible verse. An emotional and ultra-personal release, produced by Ovy on the Drums, the Colombian artist sings about overcoming adversity over an EDM-meets-trap fusion.
The music video, directed by Pedro Artola and produced by WeOwnTheCity, is just as powerful as the lyrics, demonstrating Karol running away from a group of people backed by a pack of wolves trying to bring her down, but she’s protected by a lone panther. Karol also used the opportunity to announce that Mañana Será Bonito (Bichota Season) is coming soon.
Watch “S91” below:
Best Latin songs of 2023
The 23 best Latin songs of 2023, according to Billboard‘s Latin and español editors, have been unveiled. The list is an eclectic mix of songs spanning a wide array of genres. From música urbana to regional Mexican, the choices were guided by multiple factors including memorable lyrics and standout melodies. (Worth noting that chart position was also considered.) From Bad Bunny’s “Where She Goes” to Yahritza y Su Esencia and Grupo Frontera’s first collaborative effort in “Frágil,” here are the 23 best Latin songs of 2023.