New York what are you thinking ?

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Re: New York what are you thinking ?

Postby jorge » Fri Nov 11, 2011 7:05 pm

So back to our regularly scheduled programming, what are we thinking about the decline in popularity of salsa? I also feel Oscar's and others' pain as salsa continues to get displaced by reggaeton, hip hop and other current forms of popular dance music. But I have to agree with Abakua that much of the old school NY Salsa is in a creative rut and has become boring in comparison with some other forms. He is right that Cuban timba has continued to evolve and develop creatively while much salsa follows the old formulas and rarely ventures into new territory. No doubt much of the lack of ongoing commercial success of salsa in the US is due to the economic meltdown and reduced spending money of most working people, but the lack of creativity within salsa is a contributor as well. Much of the popularity of salsa in Japan and Europe is because people there are unfamiliar with the last 40+ year history of salsa and the groups and songs which the current groups' styles reflect. They don't get bored because it is new to them and they have not heard it all before, as many New Yorkers have. Nostalgia can only get you so far.

No one is trying to shove Cuban popular music or rumba down anyone's throats. Cuban popular music (and even more so rumba) is greatly under appreciated in the US, but I think that is more a reflection of politics and lack of exposure in the US than the quality of the music itself. Actually, it seems to me that many of the Cuban musicians are better trained, with a much higher level of overall musicianship and breadth and depth of musical training covering classical, popular, improvisational, and traditional folkloric and religious forms of music, song and dance, than many US salsa musicians. Of course there are excellent musicians among those playing salsa in the US, but I am referring to the overall trend. Also, most US dancers, including hard core salseros, don't know how to dance timba, son, changui, rumba or other currently popular Cuban styles and the popularity of that music will be limited until more people learn to dance it.

All this said, I don't think that the musical quality of salsa vs timba is what is driving the lack of interest in salsa. From my biased perspective, the bad money (reggaeton, hip hop, etc) drives out the good (timba, salsa, rumba, son). The reggaeton and hip hop that can be produced on computers by people of the younger generation with little or no musical training, many of whom don't play any instruments at all, and who also don't really understand the digital electronic technology they are using, has become more popular than forms of music that require real musicians to create and play it. While rapping is certainly an art form, it does lack the melodic and harmony dimensions of singing and is in some ways easier and more accessible to those without musical training. CDs, and now iPods and MP3 players are a lot more accessible than claves, congas, bongos, pianos, saxophones and other musical instruments. Reason, Cubase, huge sample libraries copied onto hard drives, and millions of recorded songs online are a lot more available than newly composed songs or fresh new arrangements of old songs. Although there are other factors, "path of least resistance" explains some of the younger generation's musical taste, people like music they and their friends can play. And don't get me started on bachata, bongo sin clave just rubs me the wrong way.

So I think the question at hand is, moving forward, how do we get out of this rut?
Last edited by jorge on Fri Nov 11, 2011 8:05 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: New York what are you thinking ?

Postby niallgregory » Fri Nov 11, 2011 9:03 pm

leedy2 wrote:Mr Jorge you last post well put not the garbage you posted before. And as I told you let these guys defend them self's they have cause a controversy that they do not understand Yet.

Mr Bruke and Mr Nail You need to educate your self's in what is called salsa and Cuban music from its roots of it foundation. You also have to Understand that if you do not know meaning of words do not get Involve you twist thing around and make issues that do not exist . Do not think that by going to Cuba you majored in music history . What is called Caribbean music has many roots and and not all come from Cuba and Africa

Now I have a question , Do Hispanics or any Spanish speaking people go and play in Ireland, Celtic music or In Nova Scotia ? I like to know AND this is not to mock you in any way shape or form. I ask this because in my years in the music business i never have seen a Hispanic playing Bag pipes!


And YOU need stop patronizing other posters on here and talking to people like there assholes . I should not even bother engaging in your bullshit but i just cant help it . And for the record i havent twisted anything whatsoever ? Most other posters on this forum agree with with me 100 percent and i have the pm,s to prove it . And just to prove the point that you do not KNOW everything you make comments about hispanics and bagpipes , The answer is yes they do . The northern part of Spain ( Galicia ) is Celtic in origin and they have there own traditional music played with pipes called gaita http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sBQeX3hXU9Q . And i never said i have majored in music history , i am a student of the music and have been collecting , researching , reading about and most importantly playing music for over 20 years so i have learned alot about Afro cuban , Brazilian and African music . And before i forget i even seen some Cubans in Havana playing the gaita .
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Re: New York what are you thinking ?

Postby niallgregory » Fri Nov 11, 2011 10:06 pm

Wrong again pal .... :oops:

Hispanic (Spanish: hispano, hispánico) is a term that originally denoted a relationship to Hispania, which is to say the Iberian Peninsula: Andorra, Gibraltar and Spain. During the Modern Era, Hispanic sometimes takes on a more limited meaning, particularly in the United States, where the term means a person of (usually) mixed race with a Spanish surname. As such, the term in contemporary North American culture has lost its association with Spain, and has become a general ethnic denotation associated primarily with Latin America. In these terms the North American culture is viewed by some as incorrect since the term Hispanic originated from the Roman Empire referring to Hispania and its Hispanic inhabitants (Spanish). Currently many federal and/or state agencies have made this distinction, and presently include peoples of Spain (Spanish) in classifing Hispanics. Although some from Spain may not wish to classify themselves as Hispanic, others do, and many seek to have federal and/or state agencies define Hispanics and their decedents under its original definition.

You need to open your mind and stop having such an american world view . There is a big planet out there . And again you decided to ignore parts of the post , which you always do . This bit " And before i forget i even seen some Cubans in Havana playing the gaita " or do you not consider Cubans to be Hispanic ? :roll:
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Re: New York what are you thinking ?

Postby jorge » Fri Nov 11, 2011 10:31 pm

So, I repeat, this time with two meanings, how are we going to get out of this rut?

1) Truce, cease fire, stop the fight right now, you are both losing pretty bad. Well maybe Leedy is losing a little worse...
2) Refocus on the original topic, which is actually a very interesting and important topic.
3) Some genius among us is going to tell us what we need to do to re-energize commercial clave-based dance music in New York City.
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Re: New York what are you thinking ?

Postby niallgregory » Sat Nov 12, 2011 12:08 am

Moderators need to step in and start moderating . He seems to able to say exactly what he chooses on this forum with no comeback whatsoever .
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Re: New York what are you thinking ?

Postby JohnnyConga » Sat Nov 12, 2011 12:22 am

Ok here is also what's going on in the music world of NYcity as well...I recommend EVERYBODY here watch listen learn and be motivated..I have always felt that to do something you really love takes a lot of 'courage' to do...because of the odds involved, especially if you want to be a musician..IMHO...

http://youtu.be/HgYEkAC-VtI
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Re: New York what are you thinking ?

Postby jorge » Sat Nov 12, 2011 4:13 am

OK JC, I watched it. I have lived or worked in NYC for 33 out of the past 39 years that I have been playing congas. I go to NYC almost every day and play in NYC almost every week. In spite of that, I have no clue what "the stretch movement" is in jazz, or what a "stretch" song would sound like. None. Is this guy a serious musician and creator of a new form of music, or is he some kind of MBA whiz kid music marketer trying to pay off his $250,000 in college loans (or both)?
By the way, I am not being callous, I can definitely relate to the huge student loan dilemma of so many college students and graduates, and can see why the OWS movement emphasizes student loans as a critical problem for the US to solve at the societal more than the individual level.
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Re: New York what are you thinking ?

Postby b0ng0 » Sat Nov 12, 2011 4:27 am

leedy2 wrote:You have to slow down You keep sticking your foot in your mouth Spaniards are not considered Hispanics the speak the language, and may Portuguese , but not considered Hispanics they are Europeans. You will get a heart attack with me when it come to music education. :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:



I'm not taking sides or anything, but cuco has a point, Spain considers themselves part of europe, Spain doesn't count as part of latin america.
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Re: New York what are you thinking ?

Postby jorge » Sat Nov 12, 2011 5:19 am

We are almost out of the first rut, if we can avoid dredging up off-topic issues again.
The second rut is more difficult, where do people think clave-based popular dance music is headed in the next few years? From what Abakua has been saying, Australia seems to be going toward timba Cubana. Where is NYC headed?
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Re: New York what are you thinking ?

Postby OLSONGO » Sat Nov 12, 2011 6:06 am

Personally I think is all in the lack of creativity , we all know that music is as endless as mathematics and that there are many rythm patterns that can be fused to create something original...enough to keep us busy for the rest of our lives. There lies the answer. The current reality is pretty obvious... in that the youth of today is very unsophisticated , with a very low attention span and refuse to work hard to achieve something. In most cases they end up copying the past, as in sampling a song or beat. :(
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Re: New York what are you thinking ?

Postby Craig » Sat Nov 12, 2011 6:40 am

Allow me to wade into this discussion with a theory.

Every generation wants their music to be different than the music of their parents' generation. In the United States and Cuba for example, 1970s style salsa was the music of the parents of many of the current 20 year old generation, so they want something new. By contrast, in countries like Japan and Russia, salsa was not the music of the 1970s generation. The current 20 year old generation in Russia and Japan is open to 1970s salsa because it was not the music of their parents.

Just a theory. Nothing to back it up.


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Re: New York what are you thinking ?

Postby niallgregory » Sat Nov 12, 2011 12:11 pm

b0ng0 wrote:
leedy2 wrote:You have to slow down You keep sticking your foot in your mouth Spaniards are not considered Hispanics the speak the language, and may Portuguese , but not considered Hispanics they are Europeans. You will get a heart attack with me when it come to music education. :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:



I'm not taking sides or anything, but cuco has a point, Spain considers themselves part of europe, Spain doesn't count as part of latin america.


This is my last post on this as its totally off topic and i know its annoying some other posters . Who said that Spain considers itself as part of Latin America ? How could it , its in Europe end off . How does this mean that people in Spain are not considered Hispanic ? You can be European and Hispanic at the same time , again you have a very blinkered American view . People in Europe would consider the Spanish to be Hispanic and if you read the quoted article you would see that many of them also consider themselves to be . Ok the big bad wolf has been banned for his racial abuse and inability to debate an issue without getting abusive so i out of this one . If someone wants to start another topic on this go for it , its an interesting topic imo .
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Re: New York what are you thinking ?

Postby jorge » Sat Nov 12, 2011 3:39 pm

Niall and Leedy, to try to bring closure to this off-topic discussion, I ask you to please start a new thread if you want to discuss it more. The whole Hispanic vs Latino discussion is by its nature fundamentally American (including North, Central and South American and the Caribbean) since these are the main geographic areas that were part of the Spanish Empire. In the US, where this issue has been beaten to death for over 30 years, the official definition is driven by the US Office of Management and Budget as stated in OMB Directive 15. The latest revision that replaces or supercedes OMB Statistical Policy Directive 15 is here: http://www.census.gov/population/www/socdemo/race/Ombdir15.html Please read that before you launch a new discussion that includes US definitions. Bottom line, in the US, Hispanic and Latino are overlapping but very distinct terms and the current statistical policy is to use the term "Hispanic or Latino" or "Not Hispanic or Latino" to classify ethnicity, and to classify race separately (American Indian or Alaska Native, Asian, Black or African American, Native Hawaiian or other Pacific Islander, White), with multiple racial (but not ethnic) categories accepted. This policy is obviously wrong in many ways, the discussion is ongoing, but so far there is more heat than light in this discussion. I would imagine similar discussions and policies have occurred in other parts of the Americas, Europe, Australia, Africa and Asia. Common and street use of these terms is all over the map, If others want to discuss this further, please start a new thread.

Olsongo, I mostly agree but would point out how "unsophisticated" my parents thought my generation's taste in music was back in the 60s and 70s. Imagine someone thinking Jimi Hendrix' music was a lot of noise! Or that salsa was just plagiarized Cuban music! You may have had similar reactions from your parents. Even so, there are some virtuoso musicians in the current younger generation, the lazy lack of discipline theory does not apply to all, and it is worth our time to try to pass on the best of what we know to our kids and their generations.

Craig, the rebellion hypothesis does explain some of the generation gaps in music that we have seen repeated in different times and places. It is complicated and goes much deeper than that, but I think that is part of it. It will be interesting to see how the huge rebellion and rejection of the corruption of the older generations that is just starting now with the Occupy Wall Street movement will impact musical tastes of the current young generations.
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Re: New York what are you thinking ?

Postby OLSONGO » Sat Nov 12, 2011 5:32 pm

Jorge I know what you are saying ..but the proof is in the pudding and what I mean by that is in the analisis of the content of the music. Quality is quality and virtuasity is virtuasity and none of it can't be denied . I just don't find that in Reggaeton or Hip Hop.
My parentes did say somethings about the rock and roll I listened at times, but I soon over grew that myself.... in High School I started to listen more to Jazz, Salsa and protest songs, as this genres had some bite to it, message and challenges. Asnd of course a few romantic songs to apeace the girls. :lol:
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Re: New York what are you thinking ?

Postby jorge » Sat Nov 12, 2011 6:29 pm

Yeah, I haven't yet heard great musicians playing Hip Hop or Reggaeton either. But there are other music forms that are becoming popular with the current late teens/early 20s generation that do have some outstanding musicians. Have you listened to Esperanza Spalding? She is a virtuoso jazz musician (voice, acoustic bass) in her 20s and was the youngest professor ever hired to teach at Berklee. Some of the young Cuban percussionists are carrying the evolution forward, and there are even a few in NYC (eg, Caja Dura / Ilu Aye) that are showing great talent and musicianship.
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