Expat life is not an exception. Every life has its own soundtrack. The expat life is full of extreme highs and lows. It's difficult to describe the joy and excitement that comes with living in another country, or the feeling of being lost and lonely when you experience culture shock.
The first days or weeks of an expat's new life, the soundtrack is easy to hear and sounds suspiciously like the William Tell Overture from The Lone Ranger.
A few weeks later, life takes on the soundtrack of Meltdown: Three Mile Island.
But regardless of where an expat calls home, between William Tell and Meltdown, the music of the host country can filter in and become familiar.
Costa Rican calypso music is one of the most famous musical styles to come out of Costa Rica, along with soca, salsa, merengue, and cumbia.
Shanghai folk music is a special part of Shanghai culture.
Mariachi, also known as Música Ranchera or Ranchero, is the best known regional Mexican music genre in the world, making it a global Mexican symbol.
The music of Taiwan reflects the diverse culture of Taiwanese people. Taiwan has undergone several economic, social, and political changes through its cultural history, and Taiwanese music reflects those issues in its way.
The music of Sweden shares roots with its neighboring countries in Scandinavia, as well as Eastern Europe, including polka, schottische, waltz, polska, and mazurka. The Swedish fiddle and nyckelharpa are among the most common Swedish folk instruments.
The music of Ecuador is a diverse aspect of Ecuadorian culture. Ecuadorian music ranges from indigenous styles such as pasillo to Afro-Ecuadorian styles like bomba to modern indie rock. The Andes mountains house several indigenous styles of music, such as that of the Otavalo.
Some of the most famous examples of traditional folk music genres that have originated or have been extensively evolved in Argentina are carnavalito, cumbia, candombe, polka, media caña, rasquido doble, and of course tango which has managed to capture the worldwide attention in the second half of the 20th century.
It’s also worth mentioning that homesickness and culture shock can sometimes strike when you’re visiting “home” – after you’ve settled in as an expat, visiting or returning to your home country can feel difficult.
Jerry Nelson is an American writer living the expat life in Buenos Aires. Some of the adventures Jerry has enjoyed, he jumped into the ocean from the flight deck of an aircraft carrier in the Gulf of Aden, cut off a goat's balls as part of a mating ritual in Indonesia, raced a NASCAR around the oval in Charlotte, created a small coin purse out of live Tarantulas in Australia's outback, spent six-weeks with the Sinaloa cartel along the U.S./Mexican border and sailed a 16th century schooner through the sound and into the open ocean.
Never far from his coffee and Marlboros, Jerry is always glad to discuss future working opportunities. Email him at [email protected] and join the quarter-million who follow him on Twitter.