Unlike many European countries where the dominant language of the pop-culture is English, Spanish charts are typically dominated by Spanish-speaking artists singing in their native language. The Spanish appreciation for popular music also reflects great diversity of age, with artists with a long history of success featuring in the charts alongside youngsters who have just hit the music scene. Malu, daughter of flamenco singer Pepe de Lucia, first started singing professionally at the age of 15 and has been a fan favourite ever since. She’s remained at the top of her game and at age 34 continues to deliver amazing stadium performances as well as number one selling albums. From one of the most enduring stars to a recent arrival on the Spanish pop scene. Adrian, an 11-year-old from Malaga, was certainly not expected to reach the level of fame he has already achieved. Born with hydrocephalus, a condition that causes excess fluid on the brain, he underwent numerous surgeries.
Through the magic of social media his unmistakable talent was revealed and now he is a chart-topping sensation with a debut album that hit number one and featured him singing with many other Spanish artists. Antonio Jose from southern Spain is also something of a child star coming second in the junior Eurovision song contest when he was only 10 years old. A keen soccer player he eventually settled on music as his chosen career which was probably a good move. In 2015 he won the Spanish reality show La Voz and the then 21-year-old secured a recording contract becoming a pop favourite. Only two years into his recording career he already has two successful albums to his name.
One of the most consistent pop artists on the Spanish scene today is Manuel Carrasco with 6 successful albums to his credit. Another product of reality TV he was not the winner of a show in 2003 but was sufficiently popular to enable his debut album to sell in excess of 200,000 copies. His upbeat, rhythmic style has made him a firm, fan favourite and a great live act keeps the fans coming back for more. In 2001 David Bustamante featured on the first season of the reality talent show Operacion Triunfo. Often seen as Spain’s equivalent to Ricky Martin he has had a slew of successful albums most of them reaching the number one slot. The popularity of Bustamante can no doubt be attributed to his soaring vocals, but it doesn’t hurt that he has the good looks to match his romantic themes. Perhaps not as well-known but equally talented is the Spanish singer-songwriter Antonio Orozco who is of Sevillian heritage though raised for a time in Barcelona.
He returned to his roots and became influenced by the Flamenco music of the region becoming proficient at the guitar himself. He has found steady success within his own country but also with more recent tours and collaborations in South America. Vanessa Martin age 37 was born in Malaga and has become a successful pop artist with eight albums to her name. She has a wide appeal with her rhythmic and catchy tunes that are very relatable, and her popularity is such that she can be seen performing outside her native Spain. This is a mere handful of some of the great talent on the Spanish popular music scene.
It is clearly evident from the fact that some of the artists have endured over time, whilst many more are newly emerging, that the people’s passion for well sung, accessible pop music in their native tongue is still alive. The fabulous depth of talent, that is now more easily exposed through the advent of reality talent shows and the Internet, will surely result in great Spanish music for years to come.