How do I tell the difference between salsa and bachata music?

Discussion in 'Salsa Music' started by Pirate King, Jun 27, 2013.

  1. Pirate King

    Pirate King Changui

    Possibly a stupid question, and maybe I just need to listen to more of both and familiarise myself. But I've been taken aback in clubs a couple of times when a new song comes on and suddenly everyone else is moving sideways. What tells should I be looking for to quickly tell if a song is salsa or bachata?
  2. MacMoto

    MacMoto Administrator Staff Member

    Welcome to Salsa Forums!

    Yes it would definitely help ;)

    This video is actually an advert for a bachata loops and samples pack, but the sound snippets in the video should give you a good idea of the basic sound patterns of bachata music.

    Salsa: A good place to start is
    Each instrument can be adjusted individually so you can play with the sound and get the feel for the rhythm patterns of salsa music.
    Pirate King likes this.
  3. Pirate King

    Pirate King Changui

    Thanks, that really helps. Think I've got a bit more of a feel for the differences now, and that salsabeatmachine thing is fun.
  4. timberamayor

    timberamayor Maestro 'Guaguanco' Rodríguez

    One immediate clue that it is bachata is the typlical synth playing a guitar-like pattern. traditional bachata actually uses guitar, but the young musicians today seem to be using synth loops instead. Very easy to recognize as bachata. Also the harmonies and melodic lines seem to be very much the same form song to song...again talking about modern bachata.

    Salsa almost always begins with a horn intro.

    So with just this little bit of info you should be able to tell withing seconds if it is bachata or salsa. But the best advice is to listen a lot and you have already gotten good tips on how to go about it.
    Pirate King likes this.

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