Salsa > How do we identify Salsa music?

Discussion in 'Salsa' started by squirrel, Nov 26, 2004.

  1. toothlesstiger

    toothlesstiger Well-Known Member

    If I can't hear the clave rhythm, played or implied, I can't dance Salsa to it.
  2. SalsaTanfolyam

    SalsaTanfolyam New Member

    I dont think about it I feel inside. If you hear a lot of salsamusic you'll fell it to.
  3. Jane

    Jane New Member

    Hey guys, just though I should share this with other salsa lovers. Have you checked out the Jetstream Rio competition where you can win a trip to the Rio Carnival. I've been to Rio but never to the carnival, which apparently is a dance lovers paradise.
  4. tangotime

    tangotime Well-Known Member

    This is a SALSA thread.. not Samba ( altho, not a bad idea ! )
  5. SpiritBoy

    SpiritBoy New Member

    Salsa is a mix of all sorts of elements together: son, mambo, old-school rhythm and blues, jazz, funk among others, that comes together to make a sound we can identify as Salsa, even if it is hard to describe.
  6. tangotime

    tangotime Well-Known Member

    Theres a very heated discussion about " salsa " on Salsa Forums.

    The name, is more of a lable, that encompasses various indigenous latin rhythms, that are identifiable, in many cases, by the musical construction .

    As a musician said, " You cannot write a " salsa ", because there is really no such thing . The name implies more a dance "style " ,than a specific rhythm .Its useful for marketing, and, an umbrella term for all the styles that fall within that name .

    Cuban " Son " is the heart of the genre, and, depending upon which version is written/played, that ,often becomes the determining factor, by which the very experienced dancer, will dance. ( most people will dance the same, no matter what style is played ) .

    Son, is not only the " bedrock " of the music, its also a dance form .

    If you reallywant/need to know , the differences in sound, buy a CD of the following styles...


    There are others, but these are the most commonly played in clubs..
  7. opendoor

    opendoor Well-Known Member

    Speaking frankly, tangotime, the styles you mentioned lie away from the real front. Sixteen years ago we still had three communities here in west europe:
    1) Torres-NY
    2) Cuban mish-mash (all latin americans and a few west africans)
    3) and an totally isolated lusitanian community (angola, cabo verde, brazil)

    Till today the Torres-NY community has been more or less stable. The cuban mish-mash community separated into a small Vazquez-LA, and a remaining multy culty salsa scene in which also kizomba and zouk equally are taught or danced. The few cuban teachers now dwell in some niches for reggaeton and despelote.
  8. Derek Salsero

    Derek Salsero New Member

    By the Montuno, The montuno is climbing a mountain twice then back down in each rhythmic set. cumbia sounds more like chunky like a boat swaying in the waves.
  9. Simi-Lanjiao

    Simi-Lanjiao Member

    Both timba and son are played to the clave. Heck, son is where this whole salsa thing started from. Why do you exclude them from the big melting pot of 'salsa'..?

    But I do see where you're coming from. The catch-all phrase 'salsa' was invented to help people who aren't familiar with this sort of music create a generic label for it. Gotta call it something, right? Back when Don Azpiazu first brought this music to the US, they mistakenly called it RHUMBA because they didn't know what else to call it in order to sell it... and the name stuck as the latin dance came into being. In the 70s, they were faced with the same dilemma again... this time they called it 'salsa'.

    But once one begins to understand and get familiar with the differences between the different types of salsa music, one tends to find it increasingly difficult to pigeonhole everything. Son is son, timba is timba, mambo is mambo... but to keep it simple to the uninitiated and save the lengthy explanation, we call them all just 'salsa'.
  10. Simi-Lanjiao

    Simi-Lanjiao Member

    I had always thought cumbia is more like riding a horse. Bouncy. :D
  11. Derek Salsero

    Derek Salsero New Member

    I think merengue sounds like a galloping horse with one bung leg.
  12. Doo-Yoo

    Doo-Yoo New Member

    Salsa is so passionate dance.. like it :))
  13. tangotime

    tangotime Well-Known Member

    1.... The "whole " salsa thing was a re-invention of mambo.
    What you probably dont know ( from your writings ) is that Mambo NEVER died out, it just lost its more universal appeal . When Fania took over, it re-vitalised the then style of NY music, and re-branded the name, purely from an economic and sales oriented business decision.

    2.. And, It was called mambo from the day it hit NYC , out of Cuba.
    Cachao was the one who initially and formally ,wrote music under the name " Mambo " in 1938, which was well established by the time mambo hit the states .

    And " Rumba " is the generic term for the afro cuban rhythms , the various Son " dance rhythms " are the branches on the tree .

    3... As to calling "them" ALL salsa ,is not correct. Any teacher who knows the subject matter, will ( or should ) educate their students, to the differences in the musical styles within the genre .The evidence that ,this does not happen ,can be seen in dance socials everywhere ( unfortunately ! ) .
    Bailamosdance likes this.
  14. Simi-Lanjiao

    Simi-Lanjiao Member

    I have heard this phrase before, not sure by who but if I remember correctly it was in the context of the NY salsa scene:


    Never been able to figure out what that means and it's been like a pebble in my shoe for years.

    Can you explain it to me?
  15. tangotime

    tangotime Well-Known Member

    This was said by Puente.. he was ( I believe ) trying to put the music of today into context,implying that, ALL the music that was being up dated in the 70s style, was mambo, with a new set of clothes ( thats my expression, added ) .
  16. UKDancer

    UKDancer Well-Known Member

    Here's a question about Sequence Dancing (no don't laugh: I'm curious). For anyone who doesn't know, Sequence Dancing is dancing to a choreographed sequence of steps/figures (usually 16 bars) where everyone dances the same thing at the same time, repeating the sequence for the duration of a song. It is very British, and new sequences get added to the repertoire by winning an inventive dance competition (of which there are several each year).

    The question relates to "Sequence Mambo". Every script that I have ever seen breaks on 1 and not 2. Why? I'd observe, on the side, that every dance script based on Rumba breaks on 2 (as it should), but Sequence Rumba is almost universally danced on 1 in a social setting.
  17. tangotime

    tangotime Well-Known Member

    It probably stems from the fact that.. American style Rumba, was taught to commence on "1" by one major chain school ( starting on a Q to the left side ) .
    I would however agree that,the name Mambo infers, that its following a set musical sequence ,used for multi yrs, that is breaking on "2" .

    Heres where the another influnce may come from.. Rueda, on "1"
  18. opendoor

    opendoor Well-Known Member

    @tt, you know, I differ on this because I´ve also got the category of true bolero as an independent animal besides cuban son (= on2). And in the vessels of that "very british" variant still more of that ancestral bolero blood is running compared to it´s international brother.
  19. tangotime

    tangotime Well-Known Member

    Thats a "contradiction " in terms", in a sense.. Bolero, IS a Son rhythm,, if you dis-agree with that, then I suggest you take it up with latin musicians who record songs UNDER the label of Son-Bolero ( I have some titles if you need them ? ) .

    lets clarify.. " Son " is the base core element of Cuban music ,that from which, comes varying dance styles and rhythms ( Guajira, Montuno etc ) .

    The social dances in the latin genre ,we teach and dance, today, are deeply rooted in those basic concepts.
    The classic e.g. is " Cuban Rumba ".. a SOLO dance, in the guaguanco/colombian form ;from this root, the rumbas we dance today, exist ( tho no one could ever recognise that ).

    And, as I have said on many occasions, ALL latin dances. are hybrids, and the majority retain their roots, and to a large degree, the musical content, in newer formats .

    No one who has studied the latin genre, would dis-agree, that ,the vast majority of latin dances, have strayed a long way from those roots.. some more than others .

    Do me a favor, take your posits to Salsa Forums.. I would be very interested to hear, what some of the high profile musicians etc ,would have to say .
  20. opendoor

    opendoor Well-Known Member

    tt, than please let me be the only one that studied latin music and yet still disagrees. I do know Son-Bolero! Your "memory" starts with son-bolero, mine reaches back before that period, when bolero still was independent of the son and it´s ancestors. I don´t know why we still cannot agree upon this. May be the reason is that you are a dance teacher, and I´m a musician?

Share This Page