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How did Argentineans create the strongest scene of rock music outside of the English-speaking world?

Text by José M. Simián. Video by Marcelo Báez.

Argentina is an interesting country for many reasons — one of them being their nationwide obsession with soccer that has led them to win the World Cup twice (and being second-runners three times). But other main Argentine obsession — if you count out great steak, that is — is rock music scene.

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Starting in the mid-60s, the Southern country started to develop its own culture of “rock nacional,” a canon of music that will grow with different branches, forefathers, subcultures, and internal feuds over the following decades. From early pioneers like Los Gatos in the 60s to the prog-rock of Serú Girán in the 70s, the new wave explosion of Soda Stereo in the 80s, the birth of the Stones-inspired “rolinga” movement, and the lit-glam-rock masterpieces of Babasónicos in the 00s, Argentina has produced an incredibly solid output of rock music that remains largely unknown outside of Latin America. You could argue that no other country outside of the English-speaking world has produced anything similar when it comes to rock and roll.

In the latest installment of our ongoing video series on Latino pop culture, we tried to answer one simple question: why? Please watch.

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