Every­body con­sid­ers that music is the uni­ver­sal lan­guage. For one, each coun­try has its own dis­tinct taste for music. Their music is so diverse that each has its own unique style and char­ac­ter­is­tics that clear­ly sep­a­rate them from oth­er gen­res. What makes music inter­est­ing to lis­ten to is the fact that each genre rep­re­sents an extrav­a­gant and rich cul­ture from where they were rooted.

Marc Antho­ny and Glo­ria Este­fan: what do these singers have in com­mon? Sal­sa. Yes, both artists are known to their sig­na­ture music which is sal­sa. Every­body knows sal­sa, yet not most of these peo­ple know the his­to­ry behind sal­sa music.

It has been said the most peo­ple con­sid­er sal­sa as “extrav­a­gant, clave-dri­ven, Afro-Cuban derived songs anchored by piano, horns, and rhythm sec­tion sung by a vel­vety voiced croon­er in shark­skin suit.:” No won­der many are dri­ven crazy once sal­sa is played in par­ties and social events. The music adds life and gives no one dull moments. How did sal­sa devel­op into some­thing grand?

This style came from the influ­ence of Cuban son, which is a blend of African and Euro­pean music influ­ence. In Span­ish, the word itself, sal­sa, refers to sauce, a liq­uid sub­stance that adds extra fla­vor to the food. Just like the idea of sauce, sal­sa music puts more live and more spice in things mak­ing one move their body to the music. Typ­i­cal instru­ments used are piano, bon­gos, con­ga, tim­bales, trum­pet, trom­bone, mara­cas, dou­ble bass gui­tar, flute, sax­o­phone, vibra­phone, and violin.

A lot of peo­ple may refer sal­sa to Cuban music. John­ny Pacheco, the cre­ator of Fania All Stars, favored this by com­ment­ing that sal­sa is always a part and will always be Cuban Music. Now, how did sal­sa music start­ed mak­ing its way to the airwaves?

In the 1960’s, sal­sa slow­ly devel­oped through Cuban and Puer­to Rican immi­grants who lived in New York City. Bands spear­head­ed by John Pacheco, Ray Baret­to, and Eddie Palmieri dom­i­nat­ed the music scene in New York.

Dur­ing the ’70s, sal­sa spread in Puer­to Rico, Domini­can Repub­lic, Colum­bia, Mex­i­co, Venezuela, and oth­er Latin coun­tries. These immi­grants often referred sal­sa as soul or swing for the qual­i­ty of the emo­tions it gives to the African and Amer­i­can com­mu­ni­ty. It was dur­ing these years when the music had been mak­ing its name into the scene. Dur­ing this time, sal­sa became “a sym­bol of pride and cul­tur­al iden­ti­ty” among Lati­nos. They already made a name and con­tin­ued to be pop­u­lar as the years went on.

Sal­sa music diver­si­fied in the 80’s when two kinds of style emerged: sal­sa roman­ti­ca which is about love and romance and sal­sa erot­i­ca which is more “advanced” than roman­ti­ca. Per­form­ers of sal­sa also exper­i­ment­ed on ways to improve their style. It was dur­ing this time when they mixed hip hop music with sal­sa to make the genre much more known and be more popularized.

When the ’90s came, sal­sa hit the charts with top singers Glo­ria Este­fan and Marc Antho­ny. The style went on with new artists of the cen­tu­ry bring pride to its ori­gins and roots. Sal­sa music has been a great addi­tion to the vari­ety of music gen­res. Like its name, sal­sa has added a new life and more soul to the music indus­try with its upbeat rhythm that sure­ly takes any­one out of their seats.

Source by Bryce Alexan­der