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Music 101

American Pop's Hispanic Heritage

by Judy Cantor-Navas

American Pop's Hispanic Heritage

Playlist

About this playlist

The history of American pop music is all too often written only in black and white, but of course, it's always been a much more multicultural affair than that. Specifically, Latinos have made immeasurable contributions to nearly every moment and movement in pop, from Ritchie Valens' son jarocho-driven early rock 'n' roll pioneering to the Latino b-boys and DJs who helped craft hip-hop, from Latino jazzers (like Chano Pozo, who cowrote "Manteca" with Dizzy Gillespie) to pop divas. In honor of Hispanic Heritage Month, which runs from September 15-October 15, let's take a look at American pop's own Hispanic heritage -- starting with this little playlist of just a few leading Latino musical luminaries.

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