Salsa was born and developed on the streets of New York by primarily
Puertorican musicians. Salsa, as the name implies, is a tasty blend of Cuban, Puerto Rican and Dominican music influencing the new Latino of the 21st Century. During the 60s and 70s, the music, parallel to the people, developed a distinctive style that embraced the identity of Latinos in the U.S.
Emerging in a time of rapid change in the life-changing era of the 60s and 70s, when the civil rights movement swept the country with strength that only cutting through chains can have, salsa captured the diversity of New York Latinos through its music, poetry and song.
The musicians of this time were breast fed on the milk of polyrhythmic beats and honed their craft with passion on the fringes of a shifted society. A hip, Nuyorican sound that's in your face while boiling your
blood, Salsa is the soundtrack of Latino life today.
Boogalu: The marriage of mambo & r&b produced boogalu during the 60s NYC. With bilingual lyrics and a funcky back-beat, Zon del Barrio brings this musical hybrid to life with its modernized expression of these classics.
The musical genres of bomba and plena are native to Puerto Rico imported from Africa through the slave trade and developed on the Island as tribal music of resistance and endurance. The bomba is a form of
communication and spiritual release from slavery and injustice through tribal memories that play themselves out through the movements of the dancers followed by the beats of the drummers. It was eventually banned by authorities because of insurrections on sugar cane plantations. It's nature of resistance against oppression, however, continues today.
The plena derived from this rhythmic musical form as a mobile method of
melodic communication. Played on three hand drums of various size accompanied by the scratching of a gourd (guicharo), this form of music became popular around the turn of the 20th century at a time of rapid change in P.R. when the island was transforming from agricultural to industrial.
Because many people were poor and could not read, the plena became the musical form of communicating news of daily events from town to town.
Upbeat, witty, satirical and full of sexual and political double entendes the plena also helped to fuel the first protest marches owing to its mobility and catchy choruses that were incorporated on picket lines as popular proletariat chants for working class justice.