Mon. Sep 26th, 2022

New York, September 21 (EFE) – Salsa turns 60 years old and although it seems to be losing ground among the younger Latino generation in favor of reggaeton, it still has many loyal followers around the world.

Salsa, born in the Latin community in New York in the sixties of the last century, as a result of the mixture of various Caribbean rhythms, danced the world in Spanish and had its great boom in the 1970s with the help of Stars of the Stars. Fania All Stars, Puerto Rican producer and musician Richie Vieira, better known as the “Latin Rolling Stones” called them.

The salsa dancer is 60 years old.
Dancer at Salsa Congress in Manhattan, New York (USA). EFE/Angel Colmenares

Now that salsa is 60 years old, this unequivocally Latin and festive style continues to attract passionate followers, as far away as Japan, Germany, Norway, Austria or Canada, among many other countries, and coexists in a market with other Latin genres. Reggaeton, which is most popular among young people today thanks to its catchy rhythms and its offensive and sexist lyrics.

Salsa has a “World Congress” that is 60 years old

“For dancers, it’s a dream to come to New York to dance salsa,” said Laila Tastasa, an Israeli who travels to congresses around the world to pursue her passion for salsa, which also led her to learn Spanish.

“When I hear salsa, there’s nothing else, and I’m not Latin,” said Tastasa, 24, one of 7,000 people dancing non-stop to the rhythmic beat at the World Salsa Congress in New York.

Like Tastassa, the event’s dancer and artistic director, Edwin Rivera, doesn’t think salsa is going away and says the music saved his life when “I was lost on the streets of the city” and my mother gave me the choice between taking salsa classes or the military academy. .

“Salsa is like gold, it never dies, it will always exist, it will always have an audience, what happens is that it does not have a commercial appearance” that reggaeton has, which was born in the 90s as an underground movement, he indicates.

The rise of reggaeton

With millions of followers on social networks, its main means of promotion, record attendance at concerts and winning awards, as happened with recent MTV shows where the Puerto Rican Bad Bunny was the first Latino to win artist of the year, reggaeton has gained popularity. Global events that focus on the music industry.

The salsa dancer is 60 years old
Dancer at Salsa Congress in Manhattan, New York (USA). EFE/Angel Colmenares

Rivera believes that in order for salsa to gain more attention among today’s youth, salsa musicians should collaborate more with reggaeton artists and even with Anglo artists, as happened with Bachata when Romeo Santos recorded with Usher in that genre, each singing in their own language.

“Salsa has turned 60 years old as an immortal genre and it can be mixed with any other genre as it has already been done”, without losing its essence, it opened the door for all Latin exponents, and many groups and singers like Marc Anthony There are followers who take it all over the world, especially in addition to radio stations specifically dedicated to promoting Puerto Rico, Vieira noted.

Regarding reggaeton, he recalls that he triumphed against all odds after finding the formula for success, recording with important artists like Enrique Iglesias and investing a lot of money in platforms and social networks to keep in touch with his young followers, which other Genres don’t. to do

Also Spanish musicologist Sami Otazu notes that reggaeton is commercial music “aimed at crowds, sales and superficiality”, a style that works, while salsa is “more authentic, purer, musically more complex”.

“Salsa still has quite a future and even though it’s music that doesn’t reach a wide audience, it’s very powerful in the world and moves a lot of people, both at the dance and musical group and singer level,” he said.

He also highlighted that salsa that turns 60 years old is “very much alive” and there are many people who maintain it and fight to maintain it “and it is going to last a long time because it is a tradition. Music with a folkloric identity. .”

Web Editing: Rocio Casas

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