Salsa > top US cities for salsa?

Discussion in 'Salsa' started by bailarina, Oct 18, 2007.

  1. bailarina

    bailarina New Member

    What do people think are the top US cities for salsa?

    .. in no particular order:


    what else do people think?
  2. quixotedlm

    quixotedlm New Member

    on2 > on1

  3. salsamarty

    salsamarty New Member

  4. bailarina

    bailarina New Member

    top cities

    No on-1-on-2 debates! ;)

    And I"m looking for a top ten list....

    what about smaller but equally good scenes?

    Atlanta? others?
  5. Vin

    Vin New Member

    I have been tempted to start a ranking thread. Basically we would rank our favorite scenes and then at the end we could try to make a comprehensive list.

    Scenes I know decently well DC > Puerto Rico

    Scenes I know from visiting every once in a while NY > Atl > Cleveland.

    Based on what I know about the scenes I have seen I would rank in this order

    NY > DC > PR > ATL > Cleveland.

    I don't know the LA scene very well but I would be tempted to say from what I have heard that it is as good or better than the NY scene. Based on the LA congress alone I would rank it up there with New York, but congresses can be misleading.

    This can be difficult though and it varies on who you are and what you are looking for. Example: PR has the best live music and most varied music options any night of the week. On the other hand I have found that dancers are less willing to dance with people they don't know in PR.

    In DC on the other hand most ladies will always give someone a chance but the live music scene and options are nonexistent.

    My criteria is based heavily on the percentage of good dances I will have on any given evening. DC is obviously going to be skewed because I know many people in the DC scene whereas Atl and Cle are skewed down because I know less people in those scenes.
  6. Big10

    Big10 Member

    I've danced Salsa in only 6 of the following 11 places, so part of this opinion is based on personal experience, and part is based on reputation/second-hand info:

    LA = NY > PR > Houston > DC = Chicago > Miami > SF > Atlanta = Philly = Dallas

    A couple of years ago, I probably would have lumped Houston as fairly equal to DC and Chicago, but I think Houston got a big boost when some of the folks from New Orleans moved here after Hurricane Katrina (like Troy & Jorjet).
  7. tangotime

    tangotime Well-Known Member

    How could anyone emit Tampa, Orlando and Miami-- combined , probably have the most diverse latino population in existence-- the styles of music and dance, are un matched ( and yes, I have taught and danced in all the aforementioned plus some )

    Of course-- we all know this is very subjective ,and only opinions .

    And remember-- I am a world authority on my own opinion . :rolleyes:
  8. Vin

    Vin New Member

    We are only going by what we know personally. If you have danced in Tampa, Miami, or other parts of south florida then please include them in the list.

    Big10, Since we have a disagreement on PR and DC, I am curious what about PR you liked more than DC. Or did you simply just have more good dances in PR than DC. If so, please tell me where to go in PR because I have yet to find salsa nirvana in PR.
  9. tangotime

    tangotime Well-Known Member

    You just burst my bubble !! ( not in the Mecca ? )
  10. dcnewbee

    dcnewbee New Member

    go DC!

    i go up to baltimore sometimes, and i can tell theres a big difference between the baltimore and dc scene. its weird w/ baltimore only being 1 hour away.
  11. tj

    tj New Member

    Seattle has a pretty big scene. Probably more social dancers than DC, and about equivalent to Atlanta in terms of size.

    Hawaii (Oahu)'s scene is pretty small. Same with Portland. You can still get quality dances/music/floor, however. Denver's scene is bigger than those two, but it's still a relatively small scene. Roughly equivalent to Baltimore.

    I went searching for salsa in Vegas (once). I think I picked an off night/wrong club. But that was several years ago. Same goes for searching in Tampa.

    Can we include Canada as well? I like the scenes in Montreal and Vancouver a lot.

    Regarding PR - if I were to live there, my dancing would have to undergo a major overhaul, since I had a tough time dancing with the locals when I visited vin last week. Still, the music is world class! And wow, there were quite a few beautiful women around. Even moreso than what I'll normally notice.
  12. mayanempire

    mayanempire New Member

    Nothing tops NYC for me.
    Boston, DC, and Chicago would follow. South Florida has really grown on me over the past two years (there are sooo many great dancers in the state of Florida, period--and they travel all over the state).

    Smaller scenes: Raleigh/Durham, Atlanta

    Other places I've visited (LA, PR, Toronto, etc.) are difficult for me to comment on, because I have only visited around congress time, and didn't really get a genuine, undiluted taste of the local scene.
  13. GayleR

    GayleR New Member

    I enjoyed L.A. alot this past September. Vegas was fun, but not great in terms of available venues or levels of dancers, SF was a bust for me because of what I perceived to be limited choice (most likely due to my time restrictions).

    I enjoy Montreal but Toronto has a large scene and you can dance every night of the week in a wide variety of venues including clubs, socials, parties and workshops. Plus for you US folks, we're only an hour's drive from Buffalo. Or a 1 hour flight from NYC. Come on up.
  14. tangotime

    tangotime Well-Known Member

    I think youre a tad off-- the metro area of atlanta pop., is close to 4 million !!-- It has a latino pop. approaching half a mil.
  15. Vin

    Vin New Member

    I am curious how the international cities match up as well. If anyone can compare in any way . . . London, Paris, Rome, Berlin, Tokyo, Hong Kong, Cali, Buenos Aires, Cairo, Sydney, Singapore, any others . . . c'mon step up to the plate
  16. Vin

    Vin New Member

    A large Latino population does not necessarily equal a large social dance scene. Hasn't this conversation been had enough to understand that?
  17. mayanempire

    mayanempire New Member

    We recently surpassed the 5 million mark, actually. :) Our scene SHOULD be much larger than it actually is, but I suppose we are growing-- slowly, but surely.
  18. Big10

    Big10 Member

    PR is one of the places that I have not been, so I ranked it based on reputation and second-hand information. I have known a few dancers here in Houston who were born in Puerto Rico and travel back occasionally, so maybe their stories to me are based on access to a "nirvana" that was not revealed to outsiders like you. ;) My ranking of DC is based on reputation as well as attending the 2007 DC Salsa Congress, where I got a chance to speak with several of the locals about the Salsa scene. (I traveled with a friend to the Congress, and we stayed in the apartment of a woman who was on one of the DC-area dance teams.) My impression is that DC probably has a higher ratio of "trained" dancers within the Salsa community in comparison to PR, but that PR's "street" dancers are at least competent and have a higher amount of flavor. The great live Salsa music available in Puerto Rico is what tipped the balance strongly in favor of PR over DC and most other cities. Hopefully that answers your question.

    I forgot to rank Boston, and I'd probably lump it in with Atlanta/Philly/Dallas.

    By the way, I don't think we've clarified what bases we're using in this thread to rank cities. My highly subjective opinions are based on (in no particular order) number/quality of dance venues, number/quality of live bands, number/quality of "trained" dancers, prominent personalities to drive the scene, and general friendliness to outsiders.
  19. Big10

    Big10 Member

    The title of this thread is pretty that should probably be the topic of a different thread, right?
  20. tj

    tj New Member

    When I was mentioning size, I'm talking about my own perception in regards to numbers of dancers in the scene.

    Just curious, tt - when (what years?) and how long were you out here dancing/working in Atlanta? What clubs did you used to go to? I'm perfectly willing to admit that I may be missing out on the "pure street" side of Atlanta's salsa scene, but when I've tried some of those type clubs, it's not been all that happening. Would love to get your recommendations on specific places and specific nights to go.

    And Maya has it right, per wikipedia (standard disclaimers apply), the population of Atlanta is supposedly about 5.5 million as of last year. And Seattle is only 3.3 million. I think it's a credit to Maya (and the others like her) that the salsa scene in Atlanta is doing as well as it is. I will say that Atlanta is still perceived by the general public as a hip hop city. And those clubs are packed, and draw the most people.

    So to be more specific, there will be more dancers on any given Thursday/Saturday at the Century in Seattle (at least 3-4 years ago) than at the largest Saturday socials in Atlanta (usually Jimmy Rumba's social seems to get the most people). Nothing wrong with that, just my observation. It's possible that it's because the scene is still being split here in Atlanta, as the socials don't draw in many casino dancers, especially when you compare to how huge Julian's rueda school is.

    In regards to vin's question (sorry, bailarina!): I really liked going dancing in Hong Kong. London is great, too! Barcelona and Madrid are good as well. It seemed like London had the most dancers of those 4 cities.

    I went on a "Salsa Land Cruise" in Cancun, Mexico. Lots of salsa at the resort, not so much anywhere else in the rest of the touristy areas that I went to.

    I think I went to the wrong place/wrong night when I went out dancing in Prague. The music was nice, but there were only about a half dozen of us at that place.

    I've been trying to keep away from the ranking system, and only saying my perceived # of dancers in those cities. (...and for obvious reasons, I was leaving out NY & LA because they're the biggest)

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