"Bailamos" (English: "We Dance" or "Let's Dance") is a Latin pop song from singer Enrique Iglesias, sung in Spanglish. It was the debut single of Iglesias in the English-language market, and attained immense success, reaching the No. 1 spot in the Billboard Hot 100. In 1999 the song sold 4.3 million copies worldwide.
"Bailamos" was written by Paul Barry and Mark Taylor and produced by Barry and Brian Rawling, the same team which wrote and produced Cher's hit "Believe". The track first appeared on a limited edition of his Spanish studio albumCosas del Amor and was released as a single in parts of Latin America and Europe. After attending one of Enrique's concerts in March 1999, Will Smith asked Enrique to contribute to the soundtrack of his upcoming movie Wild Wild West and Bailamos was chosen to appear. The song quickly became most requested on pop radio in New York, Los Angeles and Miami. Due to the song's popularity, it was released as a single throughout the world. In English, Bailamos means "We Dance" (We Are Dancing), or in this case, "Let's Dance". In the United States, the song was seen as part of a wave of crossover music from Latin American singers and a general increase in interest in Latin music, which was started by Ricky Martin's release "Livin' la Vida Loca". The single reached number one on the US pop charts, making it Iglesias' first chart topper on Billboard's Hot 100. The Latin song "Smooth" by Carlos Santana released at the end of the year was one of the most successful songs in chart history. Its immense success could, to some extent, be credited to "Bailamos"' and other Latin pop songs during the era. The success of "Bailamos" was a breakthrough for Iglesias, which enabled him to sign a multi-album deal with Interscope. The song would go on to appear on his debut English album Enrique, though slightly altered to fit with the sound of the album. The soundtrack version has a different arrangement in mix from the Album Version.
The original music video for Bailamos was shot in Miami. It has a montage of different scenes involving Iglesias, starting off with a scene of Iglesias in an apartment talking on the phone and later looking out of a window to the Miami skyline. Subsequent scenes involve Iglesias walking the streets and staring into a building as he watches two flamenco dancers. After the song was chosen to be part of the Wild Wild West soundtrack, a second video was made, directed by Nigel Dick. A portion of this video was shot in Mexico, while most of it shot in the backlot at Universal Studios. In this video, Iglesias is depicted as a wanted man with the opening shot being a poster calling for his capture "dead or alive". Entering a sleepy Mexican town, he attracts several women who dance around him. Picking one out, they kiss until they are interrupted by people trying to claim the reward. Both Iglesias and the love interest manage to escape. The video also contains small snippets of scenes from the Wild Wild West movie. The third music video of Bailamos is directed by another famous music video director, Paul Hunter. The video is plotless, and simply features Iglesias as a barman in a night club as he watches flamenco dancers on stage. It is also intercut with shots of Iglesias interacting with the lead dancer played by Staci Flood. The video ends with Iglesias and Flood leaving the now empty club.
A year after the "Bailamos" release, in 2000, Sean Paul sampled the melody of the refrain in his song "Tiger Bone" featuring Mr. Vegas on his debut album "Stage One". The use was uncredited, changing the lyrics from "Bailamos... let the rhythm take you over, bailamos... te quiero, amor mio" to "Tiger bone... when mi drink it and rub on a piece a stone... di gal dem bend up, when mi sen up".