Caribbean music is as varied as the islands themselves. A good Bob Marley jam can get anybody in the mood for a party, but there are tons of other island sounds that will make your summer feel like you’ve been whisked away to a tropical paradise.
Some Things Last Forever by Orange Grove ft. Glennis Grace
When you think of a reggae crossover band, you probably don’t immediately think of the Netherlands. Orange Grove is a Dutch band from the island of Sint Maarten, and their songs will have you dreaming of a bonfire and savoring every bit of summer light you have.
Restraining Order by Ishawna
Caribbean people are passionate and put it all out there, and “Restraining Order” by Jamaica’s Ishawna is no different. A great beat drives this song home and will have your head bobbing, even if you can’t pick out many words through the thick Jamaican accent 😉
(I’m Drinkin’) Rum and Red Bull – Beenie Man
It’s hard to find a part of Caribbean life that doesn’t include some sort of adult beverage, and therefore many of the songs follow suit. Grammy winner Beenie Man is known as the Jamaican “king of dancehall” and you’ll definitely be grooving to this song. Disclaimer: This is a DJ’s mix of this song, but I couldn’t find the original! You’ll get the idea.
Lucy by Destra Garcia
Trinidadian SoCa artist Destra Garcia’s “Lucy” has everything you want from an island jam. A great soca beat and a super catchy hook will have you singing this song in your car, in the boat, and in your headphones on the way to work. Perfect for a summer party, this song will get stuck in your head. You’re welcome.
Big Ship by Freddie McGregor
Another smooth reggae jam from Jamaica, Big Ship is a throwback song for a relaxing day. Roll down the windows in the car, go for a drive and relish the summer sun.
Danza Kuduro by Don Omar ft. Lucenzo
This infectious reggaeton piece by Puerto Rico’s Don Omar is sure to get anybody dancing. Released in 2010, you’ll hear it all over the Caribbean and see people get out of their seats to move to the music.
Bonus: Trini Dem Girls by Nicki Minaj ft. Lunchmoney Lewis
I’m not the biggest Nicki Minaj fan, but I’m including her on this list because she’s a recognized, mainstream name for statesiders. She was born in Trinidad, but raised in New York. This song talks bout island girls and has a driving beat that keeps everybody grooving.
I haven’t even scratched the surface of what music in the Caribbean sounds like. This tiny sample is just an introduction to what kinds of music drive this region of the world.What are your favorite summer songs?