The 24 Best Latin Songs of 2024 So Far: Staff Picks

Artistes

From Xavi’s “La Diabla” to Karol G’s “Si Antes Te Hubiera Conocido,” see our picks here for the best Latin tracks from 2024’s first six months.

Xavi, Karol G, Kany García & Myke Towers

Luis Hernández; miexteniarazon; Alejandro Pazmiño; @imagineitmedia / @marilynhue

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Latin artists across all genres have been unstoppable this year — some have stayed faithful to their sound, others have gone full experimental, and others are making entirely new waves in 2024. 

Three songs that have dominated the Billboard Hot Latin Songs chart this year (so far) are representative of that: With “La Diabla,” Xavi became a household name with his fresh corrido romantico sound; Peso Pluma experimented with dreamy pop music on Kali Uchis’ “Igual Que Un Ángel”; and “Gata Only” put Chilean newcomers FloyyMenor and Cris MJ on the international map. 

The former of the three smashes hit No. 1 on the Jan. 6-dated chart, where it reigned for 14 non-consecutive weeks. The latter is on its 11th consecutive week at No. 1 after peaking on April 20. The Kali and Peso collab also crowned the chart for one week at the end of January.

Also reflected in our list of the best Latin songs from 2024’s first six months are surprising collaborations, such as Camilo and Carin León’s feel-good salsa “Una Vida Pasada,” Belinda & Natanael Cano’s “300 Noches” and Prince Royce & Gabito Ballesteros’ regional-bachata fusion “Cosas de la Peda.”

Meanwhile, Artists such as Karol G and Myke Towers stepped out of the reggaetón realm to explore the merengue world. The Colombian artist dropped “Si Antes Te Hubiera Conocido” and Towers released “La Capi” — both of which scored high on the Billboard charts. 

Música Mexicana, Latin urban, pop and tropical are all having their respective moments this year. See the ranked list below of the 24 songs that have impressed us the most through 2024’s first six months.

Silvestre Dangond & Carlos Vives, “Tú o Yo”

“Either you sing to her, or I sing to her/ She doesn’t mind destroying my heart” goes the chorus of the catchy vallenato pop song “Tú o yom” in which Colombian stars Silvestre Dangond and Carlos Vives join forces for the first time. The cheerful song, co-written by the duo and produced by Andrés Castro, tells the story of two friends who compete for the love of a woman. The collaboration returned artists back to the top 5 of Billboard‘s Tropical Airplay chart, marking the first appearance of Dangond in that region since 2020 and first for Vives since 2022. The duo of vallenato ambassadors once again show that a folk rhythm can stretch beyond a specific region and appeal to an international audience. — LUISA CALLE

Emilia Mernes & Los Angeles Azules, “Perdonarte, Para Que?”

Argentine pop princess Emilia Mernes keeps delivering surprise after surprise. This time, she trades her urban pop for a saucy, attitude-laden cumbia alongside veteran ensemble Los Angeles Azules. Here, the group — which got a new lease on life by collaborating with a wide array of artists in a variety of genres — cedes the vocals entirely to Emilia, and still manages to retain its signature sound. A coup for both sides. — LEILA COBO

Manu Chao, “Viva Tu”

There’s something nostalgic about “Viva Tú,” where the eternal troubadour captures the simple joys of life and weaves them into a tribute to women that feels both personal and universal. This rumba thrives on the heart-rending strums of a nylon guitar set to a mellow rhythm, while flamenco-styled vocals further enrich the tune. “Everyday I fall in love,” he sings, honoring everyday heroines from the baker to the sweeper. The song heralds Manu Chao’s much-anticipated return to music, serving as the first single from his upcoming LP — also titled Vida Tu (due out September), marking his first album in 17 years. — ISABELA RAYGOZA

Maria Becerra & Ivy Queen, “Primer Aviso”

Image Credit: Javier Rogoski; Zachary Quintana Zambrana

The collaboration we didn’t know we needed came by way of Maria Becerra and Ivy Queen. Set to a fiery old-school reggaetón beat, “Primer Aviso” finds Becerra venting in rapid-fire verses about obstacles she’s faced in the industry, and is soon joined by Ivy Queen, who has a thing or two to say about challenges faced by women in a male-dominated genre. Fun fact: the song also features ad libs by J Balvin, Nicky Jam, Yandel, Zion, Guaynaa and Lola Indigo. — GRISELDA FLORES

Boza & Elena Rose, “Orion”

Panamanian star Boza captivated us ones more at the end of May, this time with a catchy fusion of reggaetón, salsa and Afrobeats, for which he recruited Venezuelan singer and songwriter Elena Rose. Sharing its title with the three-track pack on which it is included, “Orion” is sophisticated both musically and lyrically, with an irresistibly playful bridge from Boza (“If you kiss me, I deconfigure-guru / If they hurt you, I heal you, cu, curo”) and the evocative contribution of Elena Rose (“I also want to have you, just give me a chance to assimilate/ For in the past I fell a lot, and I don’t want to harm you with my injuries”). It’s a captivating combination that shows new layers of both artists, each of whom have their moment to shine. — SIGAL RATNER-ARIAS

Grupo Firme, “El Beneficio de la Duda”

Eduin Caz, Grupo Firme’s fierce leader, has perhaps one of the best and most versatile voices in regional Mexican music, which is why he can easily adapt his vocals to sing huapangos, corridos and, here,  norteño ballads. In “El Beneficio de la Duda,” penned by Joss Favela, Caz doesn’t hold back his emotions — singing (almost imploring) evocatively about getting a second chance, over an equally nostalgic accordion. — G.F.

Prince Royce & Gabito Ballesteros, “Cosas de la Peda”

Leave it to Prince Royce to flawlessly fuse bachata with música mexicana. The New York-born artist recruits regional Mexican singer-songwriter Gabito Ballesteros for this heartbreak song that starts off with a wailing trombone, the perfect canvas for lyrics about drowning your sorrows in alcohol. “Cosas de la Peda” – which peaked at No. 1 on the Latin Airplay chart in April – strikes the perfect balance of bachata’s hip-swiveling beats and regional Mexican’s signature instruments, such as the requinto, tololoche and trombone. — G.F.

FloyyMenor & Cris MJ, “Gata Only”

Image Credit: Ignacio Cruz

The simple-yet-provocative lyrics in “Gata Only” have gone massively viral on social media, skyrocketing the reggaetón tune to No. 1 on Hot Latin Songs, where it’s ruled for double-digit consecutive weeks. Performed by Chilean newcomers FloyyMenor and Cris MJ, “Gata Only” tells the story of a guy who’s chasing an attractive girl. With the song, both La Serena-based artists made history on the chart, marking the first time any Chilean artist entered the top 10 since La Ley and Ednita Nazario’s “Tu Sabes Bien” peaked at No. 8 in 1999. — JESSICA ROIZ

Belinda & Natanael Cano, “300 Noches”

Following the release of “Cactus,” which officially marked Belinda’s Mexican music era, the singer unleashed “300 Noches,” featuring the pioneer of corridos tumbados, Natanael Cano. The lyrically and sonically striking heartbreak song starts off with a soft piano tune and Belinda’s evocative delivery before requinto guitars take center stage, transforming the ballad into a corrido tumbado, or a corrido coquette (a term coined by Belinda). Safe to say, “Beli-Bélica” has us totally hooked. — G.F.

Fuerza Regida, “Tú Name”

Fuerza Regida delivers a hard-hitting kiss-off for anyone looking to leave an ex in the past with “Tu Name.” JOP channels raw conviction and passion as he croons about moving beyond a former relationship through wild nights and new encounters. Backed by an arresting corridos rhythm, the song explodes with energy as it embraces a narrative of revenge and liberation – forgetting the ex’s name by indulging in carefree rendezvous with others. As the chorus repeats (“Party, party/ Shorty says ‘Daddy, daddy’/ I don’t know you, mami, mami/I forgot your name”), the message is clear – lose the past in the haze of the party. “Tu Name” reached No. 66 on the Billboard Hot 100 while also climbing to No. 2 on Hot Latin Songs. — I.R.

Grupo Frontera ft. Nicki Nicole, “Desquite”

Grupo Frontera and Nicki Nicole both surprised fans when they unleashed their first collaborative effort “Desquite” — a definite brand-new sound for each act. An innovative tribal guarachero, Frontera and Nicki narrate a song about retaliation and vengeance — but by having fun and living life. “Edgard Barrera told me he had a song for me called ‘Desquite’ that fuses cumbia with a bit of tribal. I heard it and it blew my mind,” the Argentine artist previously told Billboard. “I would play the song every day, and that’s how it was born.” The two artists recorded “Desquite” in November 2023 during Latin Grammys week in Seville, and it became part of Frontera’s 2024 sophomore album, Jugando a que no pasa nada. — J.R.

Myke Towers, “La Capi”

On his LVEU: Vive La Tuya…No La Mia album, Towers included a captivating tropical fusion dubbed “La Capi” (short for “la capital,” which means “the capital” in English). Blending the fast-paced merengue tipico with a hint of bachata, “La Capi” flaunts Towers’ ability to navigate far beyond the rap and reggaetón realms. “Take me to the capital/ I want to see your country/ I want to explore with you/ Tell me what we’re going to do,” the Puerto Rican artist chants. Though the song came out in 2023, it hit No. 1 on both Billboard‘s Tropical Airplay and Latin Airplay charts in May. — J.R.

Danny Ocean, “Amor”

Image Credit: Napoleon Habeica

With “Amor”, Danny Ocean scored his first No. 1 twice on the Billboard charts: The song conquered both the Latin Airplay and Latin Pop Airplay charts in June. The slow-paced reggaetón single, with a soulful and subtle guitar chord progression, is driven by a smooth drum and bass groove, while the piano adds soft harmonies. “You, I, add two/ And if we raise it everything will be better/ Because cold plus cold equals heat” goes part of the lyrics. The relaxed and tender song is the perfect ode to slow dancing or relaxing with someone special, while being transported to a tropical paradise. — L. Calle

Feid, “Sorry 4 That Much”

Feid has returned to his more melodic, romantic reggaetón sound with “Sorry 4 That Much.” Produced by his longtime collaborators Jowan, Wain and Rolo, the sultry-yet-edgy urban track finds Ferxxo both reminiscing and regretful about a relationship that didn’t work out. “Before you leave/ I want to thank you for everything I was able to live/ You made me happy/ All this time with you,” he passionately chants. With his latest track, the Colombian artist secured his fifth top 10 hit on Billboard’s Hot Latin Songs chart — debuting at No. 4 in June, and marking his first unaccompanied solo top 10 entry on the tally. — J.R.

Morat, “Faltas Tú”

With the single “Faltas Tú” (“Only You Are Missing”), Colombian boyband Morat immerses us in a nostalgic atmosphere in sound and visuals as they explore the theme of missing a loved one. The pop-rock track at times evokes the distinctive vintage sound of ’70s rock classics, driven by electric guitar, with vocals wrapped in reverb effects and captivating melodies. The song, setting the tone for the group’s next album, represents “the new aesthetic and the new attitude” of the band. Its music video, filmed in Mexico, complements the theme of the song by showing incomplete elements, such as a hot dog bun without the hot dog and Paris without the Eiffel Tower, while the band members travel and perform in a retro silver Airstream trailer. — L. Calle

Young Miko, “Curita”

In the mid-tempo, groovy reggaetón jam “Curita,” Young Miko steers away from the saucy trap sound that has made her a rising star. Backed by an infectious piano melody, the song — which translates to “bandage” in English — finds the Puerto Rican artist singing about curing the heartbreak of the girl she likes. “I know you just broke up/ And that’s why I came when you called/ Today I’ll make sure you forget him,” she chants over the Mauro and Jota Rosa-produced track. Miko premiered the melodic single at the 2024 Billboard Women in Music event, where she received the Impact Award. — J.R.

Kany García, “García”

Image Credit: Mary Beth Koeth

“García,” the title track of Puerto Rican singer songwriter Kany García’s new album, is a letter from García to herself, addressing the young, vulnerable Kany, and the present-day star, who’s still as vulnerable (“Tengo miedo de meterme en esta ola de ficción/I’m afraid of losing myself in this wave of fiction”). It is a 2:42-long summary of what every artist, and really, every one of us fears: Losing touch with our real selves. Garcia’s ability to distill such a big issue into such a small, brilliant package underscores her genius. — L. Cobo

Karol G, “Si Antes Te Hubiera Conocido”

Just in time for the summer, Karol G dropped her first-ever merengue tune, “Si Antes Te Hubiera Conocido” (which means “if I would’ve met you before” in English). Co-produced by Edgar Barrera, Sky Rompiendo and Karol, the feel-good tropical tune is an ode to the Dominican Republic: “Its culture, its music, its colors, the hospitality, the energy…everything feels very authentic and special there,” she expressed of the Caribbean Island in an Instagram post. “Its people have embraced me in a way that fills my heart and inspires me all the time.” Lyrically, the playful song — which debuted at No. 3 on Hot Latin Songs — details connecting with someone who is already in another relationship. — J.R.

Camilo & Carín León, “Una Vida Pasada”

Colombian pop star Camilo and regional Mexican sensation Carín León are both known for experimenting with different genres. But when the former recruited the latter for a classic romantic salsa, part of his three-track EP dos, it was not only a big surprise but also a real treat for both artists’ fans. In “Una Vida Pasada,” their second collaboration after 2023’s “Ni Me Debes, Ni Te Debo”, Camilo and León blend their voices splendidly over the captivating tropical rhythm, while singing about a love so strong that comes from a past life, even though it cannot materialize in present time. It showed yet another layer of both artists music prowess, and gave the Mexican singer his first entry on the Tropical Airplay chart, where it reached the top 10. — S.R.A.

Rauw Alejandro, “Touching the Sky”

Rauw Alejandro takes us to musical heaven with his first solo single of 2024; and “Touching the Sky” swiftly ascended to No. 36 on Latin Airplay, captivating listeners with its luminous, disco-tinged synth-pop sound. A declaration of newfound love and the exhilaration it brings, the song is a blend of heartfelt lyrics and compelling electronic beats. Written by Rauw himself, his evocative delivery on lines like “You can stay, or you can leave/ But for now, I feel like I’m touching the sky” captures the euphoria of romantic bliss. This track is not just a song, but already a summer anthem, perfectly crafted to energize dancefloors and elevate summer playlists alike. — I.R.

Shakira & Cardi B, “Puntería”

Image Credit: Courtesy Photo

A catchy pop song with flirty lyrics about falling for a man while knowing he’s no good for you, “Puntería” reached No. 1 on both the Latin Airplay and Latin Pop Airplay charts and also hit No. 72 on the Hot 100. The upbeat electro-pop track, part of Shakira’s latest album Las Mujeres Ya No Lloran, marked the first collaboration between the Colombian star and the New York rapper, who adds her bad-girl swagger to the mix with bilingual lyrics, while Shakira shines with her characteristic style and effortless flow. This summer, it was selected as the official song of TelevisaUnivision’s coverage of the 2024 Copa America CONMEBOL. — S.R.A.

Peso Pluma, Tito Double P & Joel de la P, “La People II”

Despite the looming shadow of the Mexican mafia and the peril of death threats, Peso Pluma and Tito Doble P doubled down on their gripping narrative in “La People,” from Peso’s 2023 album Génesis, about the daring escape of a notorious mob figure. The saga continues with this year’s “La People II,” where the tale escalates to an all-out exodus, capturing the intense power struggle between the cartel and authorities. Adding to the dynamic, Joel de la P joins the duo — and together, the trio delivers lyrical references that dive into the tumultuous existence of controversial figure El Nini, rumored to be the chief of security for Los Chapitos. The track transcends mere storytelling; Peso, Tito and Joel don’t just sing — they bark. Their powerful delivery is what sets “La People II” apart, earning its place on this list. — I.R.

Kali Uchis & Peso Pluma, “Igual Que Un Ángel”

There’s a stark contrast between Kali Uchis and Peso’s vocals here: Uchis’ voice is silky and almost soothing while the Mexican star’s is nasally and gravelly — yet they complement each other so well on “Igual Que Un Ángel.” Singing over a disco-tinged beat about a woman who is an unattainable princess, both artists shine here, with Peso willingly getting out of his comfort zone for this R&B-infused soulful performance. The track peaked at No. 1 on Hot Latin Songs in January. — G.F.

Xavi, “La Diabla”

Image Credit: Luis Hernández

No one anticipated the seismic impact of a groundbreaking song built on the fervor of last year’s corridos. This wave was propelled into the spotlight by an enigmatic teen solo act named Xavi, whose fiery single “La Diabla” quickly became a powerhouse hit. The track, about a perilous romance, is driven by a spellbinding requinto riff (courtesy of his guitarist, Ivan) and Xavi’s resonant vocals. These elements helped secure the song’s spot at the top of multiple charts, including Hot Latin Songs for 14 weeks — the most in 2024 so far — and without any co-leads or features. Melding the raw spirit of corridos tumbados with tender romanticism, “La Diabla” signifies a defiant milestone, heralding the arrival of a new superstar. — I.R. 

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