12 Latin Songs That Enrich Our FIRE Journey with Happiness

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Hello, Enchumbao readers! On this post we’ll be doing something different, because not everything in our daily lives is about saving and investing for financial independence. We like to enjoy the journey with lots of laughter and dancing as well. In commemoration of Hispanic Heritage Month, which culminates today, I thought it would be a great idea to let you in on some of the music that inspires our journey and makes us get up and dance at any party. Latin music is a big deal in our household and we are huge fans of it. We both enjoy a great song, no matter what Latin genre it’s in.

My life has been shaped by the beat of a tambora (drum) since I was born. No matter where you go in the Dominican Republic, you’ll encounter the rhythm of the island. There’s even a saying for someone like me: Soy dominicano hasta la tambora. (I’m Dominican, all the way). Well, maybe not all the way, but I’m probably as Dominican-American as you can get in the FI world! I come from the island of the Merengue and the Bachata. 🙂 More importantly, I’m a Latino and being Latino is a way of life for me.

My culture is reflected through the way I express myself, the food that we eat and the music that we listen to almost every day!  Let’s bring some Latin flavor into the blogosphere and hopefully some Latin rhythm into your life!

A little background history on Hispanic Heritage Month

Hispanic Heritage Month culminates this week. Congress first passed a resolution to celebrate Hispanic heritage at the national level on September 17, 1968 as a week-long celebration. It’s now a month-long celebration that runs from September 15 through October 15.

During this period, we recognize the contributions made by Hispanics in the United States. September 15 coincided with the independence celebration of five Latin American countries: Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua, which is why the festivities begin then.

Latin music influence in my life

Since I was the youngest and raised with seven sisters, I grew up listening to (what I thought was some sort punishment at that time) Spanish ballads and that heavily influenced my music taste. My sisters would play Spanish balladeers all day long while they cleaned the house. Cartoon watching? Not a chance unless I did my house chores. And there were times I had to beg for them to lower the music, that they would repeatedly listened to, so that I could hear the TV.

This kind of struggle with my siblings probably went on until I became a teenager and started to fall in love with the same music I was accustomed to hearing with them. Overall, I had a great upbringing and music was there for me all along. The Latin songs that I heard over and over while growing up are now part of my music collection. I’m very glad that I was exposed to such great music and, in honor of Hispanic Heritage Month, I’d like to share some of those songs in our collection.

Many of these songs remind us of how happy people can live their lives in minimalistic ways. They talk about the simple life with freedom from worries. Some are about spending quality time with loved ones. Others shows how important it is to be in the moment and to not forget to live. These are all things that we’re aiming for as we enjoy a life drenched in true happiness.

12 Latin songs that inspire our journey

1. Lo Poco Que Tengo (The little that I have) by Ricardo Arjona

Genre: Latin Pop
Origins: Arjona was born in Guatemala.

This song, by this renowned Latin singer and songwriter, is all about the simple life and brings the minimalistic perspective to a whole new level.

Lyrics that stand out:
What I have is so little that it is worth a million bucks.
 I have the air that I breathe and the sea all for me.
(I have) the footprints of your bare feet, the smoke from the coffee maker,
three fake surreal paintings, and your laughter that brings the spring, despite the horrible weather.
The little that I have is so little that it’s essential.
I have a rain shower for my summer and a wave for surfing.
(I have) a shade that follows me everywhere I go and two feet for walking.
What I have is so little that there’s enough to give away.
The little that I have is so little that I have no one commanding me.
I have a clock between the clouds.
(I have) your breasts like two little cherubs.
(I have) the evening for napping even if the world turns upside down.
 The little that I have is so little that it even makes me happy…

2. La Bicicleta (The bicycle) by Carlos Vives and Shakira

Genre: Vallenato
Origins: Both singers were born in Colombia.
I enjoy the rhythm of the song and the simplicity of a couple riding a bike everywhere. It has a Mustachian feel to it.

Lyrics that stand out:
I can be happy, walking relaxed among the people.
I have a bike that takes me everywhere…

3. Ojala Que Llueva Cafe (I hope it rains coffee) by Juan Luis Guerra

Genre: Merengue
Origins: Juan Luis was born in the Dominican Republic.

This song is like a request to the heavens for coffee. Oh, please let it rain coffee! The lyrics are beautiful and it reminds me of the crops and fields that we frequent when we’re in the DR.

Lyrics that stand out:
I hope it rains coffee in the countryside.
Let there be a heavy rain of cassava roots and tea.
Let a drizzle of white cheese fall from the sky.
And to the South a mountain of watercress and honey.
I hope that autumn will cover my harvest
With pitisalé instead of with dry leaves.
I want to sow sweet potatoes and strawberries in a plain.
I hope it rains coffee.
So that we won’t suffer so much while working the plot
I hope it rains coffee in the countryside.

4. Vivir Mi Vida (Live my life) by Marc Anthony

Genre: Salsa
Origins: Marc was born in New York City and is of Puerto Rican descent.

Wow, what a great, vibrant song this is. We were hooked from the moment we first heard it. It’s a song you want to dance to no matter where you are. The video also has a cool English intro.

Lyrics that stand out:
Sometimes rain comes to clean wounds.
Sometimes just a drop can overcome the drought.
I’m gonna live in the moment to understand destiny.
I’m gonna listen quietly to find the way.
I’m gonna laugh, I’m gonna dance, I’m gonna live my life.
Start dreaming, laughing, feel, dance and enjoy.
You only live once.
Live, always keep moving forward.
Don’t look back…

5. Vuela Alto (Fly high) by Julio Iglesias

Genre: Latin Pop
Origins: Julio was born in Spain.

This song reminds me of my father. We always listen to it over a glass of wine when I visit him in the DR.

Lyrics that stand out:
To arrive at the top takes effort.
And when you’re at the top, it will cost you more to remain there.
Try not to neglect it and don’t look back.
Or everything that you achieved can be taken away.
Nothing is for free here. Everything has a high price.
A step that takes you upwards is a step that you have to pay for.
Here, you have to dance it all without missing a step.
No one lends a hand if they see you going down.
Fly my friend, fly high, don’t be a seagull on the sea.
People shoot to kill when we fly too low.
Utilize the wind while it blows in your favor.
Let the air take you far away, the further, the better.
Fly my friend, fly high…

6. Isla Bella (Beautiful island) by Ricky Martin

Genre: Latin Pop
Origins: Ricky was born in Puerto Rico.

I feel that the sentiment of this song can transcend all language barriers. It’s a soothing reminder of your native land and a medicine for the soul.

Lyrics that stand out:
When I’m far away, you don’t know how much I miss
the noise of my town and the touch of this sea.
I return to the crib that witnessed my birth.
I return to the hood that saw me grow up.
I’m back to the refuge that calms my pain
and I smell the memories of my first love.
Slowly, the wrinkles tell me that time is like a passenger
that gets on your bandwagon and announces that life is just a moment.

7. Propuesta Indecente (Indecent proposal) by Romeo Santos

Genre: Bachata
Origins: Romeo was born in NYC and is of Dominican and Puerto Rican descent.

We love dancing to the sounds of Bachata! This a very romantic and sensual song by Bachata superstar Romeo Santos. Who knew you could mix Bachata and Tango! Interesting fact about Romeo: he is also the first Latin artist to sell out the new Yankee Stadium. The tickets sold out within 48 hours.

8. La Gozadera (The party) by Gente de Zona, featuring Marc Anthony

Genre: Reggaeton
Origins: Gente de Zona members are from Cuba.

Gente de Zona really knows how to party! This is another fun dance song that unites all the Latin American countries with the music. In the video, Gente de Zona and Marc cause a fun traffic jam. La Gozadera was filmed in the Dominican Republic and Cuba, according to Billboard.

9. Mi Primer Millón (My first million) by Bacilos

Genre: Latin Pop
Origins: The band is a trio consists of Colombian singer and guitarist Jorge Villamizar, Brazilian bassist André Lopes and Puerto Rican percussionist José Javier Freire .

Fill in the blank: I just want to make my first million so that I can _____________! This song is a fun way to think of why you want to reach FI or maybe just have that first million in investments!

I’m tired of being in debt and seeing you suffering for every cent.
Let’s leave it all behind and go to Miami.
I just want to have a radio hit to earn my first million dollars and buy you a big house, big enough for your heart.
I just want everybody to sing this song so that I can make my first million.

10. La Mordidita (The bite) by Ricky Martin, featuring Yotuel Romero

Genre: Merengue
Origins: Yotuel was born in Havana, Cuba.

La Mordidita is another fun song where people start dancing after a contagious bite! The video was filmed in Cartagena, Colombia.

11. Bailando (Dancing) by Enrique Iglesias, featuring Descemer Bueno and Gente De Zona

Genre: Latin Pop
Origins: Enrique was born in Spain. Descemer was born in Cuba.

Fun song to dance to and an awesome video to watch due to its well-done choreography. Enrique shot the video in the Dominican Republic and Cuba.

12. Adrenalina (Adrenaline) by Wisin, J.Lo and Ricky Martin

Genre: Reggaeton
Origins: All three artists are of Puerto Rican descent.

This Puerto Rican trio proves to be a powerful combination on the dance floor. Adrenalina will keep you on your feet and asking for more…

What songs or music genre do you enjoy listening to? Are there any songs that inspire your FI journey?

Featured image by: Muzik-agaciniz

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Mr. Enchumbao

I work for a large investment management company helping people save for traditional retirement. During my spare time, I write about our FIRE journey here, at Enchumbao. My journey to FI began in 2012. I was in a lot of debt back then, but I turned things around and became debt free a few years later. My wife and I reached financial independence in 2017 and are preparing to retire soon.

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4 Responses

  1. Nice! It was about time for me to change up the tunes we are streaming.

  2. Joy says:

    My parents like Latin songs and they believe it helps them be more active. It was mentioned here that there’s a Hispanic heritage that’s celebrated yearly. Moreover, it’s best to see entertainment logs for latin billboard charts.

    • Hi Joy –
      I agree that Latin music can get you moving. We always play some dance music in the background when we do house chores and it keeps us going. Thanks for stopping by.

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