Whether you like it or not, “Despacito” has become this summer’s anthem.
The song, whose title means “slowly” in Spanish, was released seven months ago and has been breaking records ever since. In June, the song and accompanying remix featuring Justin Bieber became the most streamed track of all time.
Now Luis Fonsi and Daddy Yankee’s smash single is officially the most watched video in YouTube history, with over 3 billion views. And it got there faster than any music video in history.
What makes the song’s success even more remarkable? Almost all of the lyrics are in Spanish. It’s actually the first Spanish-language song to make it to the top of the Billboard Hot 100 list since 1996, Mashable noted.
That basically makes “Despacito” the Macarena of its generation.
Why is it so popular?
How did a Puerto Rican pop song become a global hit? Many writers have come up with theories about its Latin roots, its connection to Bieber (and the controversy that comes with that), and the simple fact that the song is just downright catchy.
YouTube Trends believes it has a lot to do with the song’s international appeal and a “massive growth spurt” of Latin artists in recent years.
“Around the world, monthly view counts for top Latin acts have skyrocketed since this time last year, growing 940 percent in Indonesia, 821 percent in the Philippine, 463 percent in India, 284 percent in South Africa, 260 percent in Israel, 270 percent in New Zealand, 237 percent in Turkey, 178 percent in the U.K. and 110 percent in Canada,” the platform says.
One of GoMN’s music experts, Go96.3 host Jordan Alamat, seems to echo that opinion:
“If you look at the direction of popular music in the last few years, Latin and Reggaeton influence has been increasingly more prevalent in American and global music – Major Lazer, Justin Bieber’s ‘Sorry,’ ‘Cheap Thrills,’ etc.
While it’s cool to see that sound disseminate and influence the direction of popular music, it was, in my opinion, beginning to white wash its Latin origins. Despacito’s success is a testament to Latin and Reggaeton influence in global music, and it’s great that an authentic song from those roots is the most viewed song in the world.”