Salsa remixes of popular songs

Discussion in 'Salsa Music' started by, Mar 16, 2017.

  1. terence

    terence Maestro 'Descarga' Cachao

    And that, sums up the major problem, of why the club scene, will eventually disintegrate, to the smaller scene it once was.

    I do not think that, the majority of dancers ( and teachers ) realise how much music is out there . The variety is beyond belief..
  2. salsamaniac4ever

    salsamaniac4ever Son Montuno

    I tried to listen to the songs on the webpage but I couldn't make it past the first 10 seconds. It's really painful to listen to. That sort of remixes has nothing to do with Afro-Cuban-Rhythms whatsoever. And I sincerely hope that those kind of remixes will never become popular in the larger Salsa scene. The reason why I dance is because of the music and not the other way around. And like @terence already stated there is soooooooo much music out there. Start researching and listening. It's almost next to impossible to get bored by the vast amount of Salsa tunes out there. Except you listen to the same 50 tracks over and over again.

    I live in Germany with Latin-American roots. A friend of mine who is teaching Salsa started in January this year to teach Salsa On2 directly to beginners. This approach is absolutely not common in Germany. And my part is to teach the music to the beginners so that they learn right from the start to understand and appreciate the music. And as a DJ I see it as my responsibility to expose the new dancers to all the variety out there. Of course I repeat songs because dancers also like to dance to songs they know. However, I also play every week tunes they never heard before (at least not from me). There is no need to expose them to non Salsa music. Either they start to like the music or they move on to the next dance style (e.g. WCS, Lindy-Hop etc). If they don't get into the music it's totally fine.

    Just my 2 cents ;)
  3. Groove On

    Groove On Sonero

    You can just say arrangement - it's assumed that an arrangement is a version of a song. It's also crystal clear when you compare a remix to an arrangement.
    Dissonant Harmony likes this.
  4. Groove On

    Groove On Sonero

    I also agree that I have yet to find an Afro-Latin remix that I really like. Though there are properly done arrangements of modern songs that are decent. (like the Mandingo cover/arrangement of Adele's 'Hello'). It's very pop Salsa but at least I can call it Salsa.
    Marcos and azana like this.
  5. terence

    terence Maestro 'Descarga' Cachao

    How times have changed when, that's all there was..
    Marcos likes this.
  6. DJ Yuca

    DJ Yuca El Sabroso de Conguero

    I started on the salsa scene about 10 years ago and in a very short space of time I was exposed to the phenomenon of salsa instructors playing contemporary r&b hits at salsa events, and salsa dancers hitting the floor to dance 'salsa' to such non-salsa, non-Latin tunes. In many cases the salsa dancers showed more enthusiasm than they did for any type of salsa music. I soon discovered that there is a name for this phenomenon ('salsa to r&b') and there was even a dedicated monthly 'salsa to r&b' night, which a hell of a lot of local salsa dancers attended. I even received criticism for not having or wanting to 'salsa' to such tunes! I even know of 2 non-local, very well-regarded salsa teachers (one from up north and one from London) who visited (separately) 'salsa to r&b' nights and thought the whole idea was wonderful!

    In fact, even on the more discerning parts of the salsa scene where r&b is not played, there have still been non-salsa tunes that have been absolutely massive (e.g. the Black Eyed Peas tune that got rinsed to death, This is Not a Tango, etc). Hence my comments earlier in the thread that pop hits don't even need to be remixed to make them suitable for salsa. So the 'salsa' remixes in this thread, and the fact that they are popular with some salsa dancers, don't surprise me a bit.

    Salsa dancing appeared because people wanted to dance to the music they enjoyed. Well the same thing happened with waltz, samba, tango etc - but I can't imagine many people who learn to dance ballroom do so because their favourite music is waltz, samba, tango etc. In fact I don't even think genuine examples of such types of music are played at ballroom events nowadays.

    Of course salsa is not ballroom, but salsa has become some sort of hybrid between what it used to be i.e. people with passion for the music, and a ballroom type scene where no one really cares about the music. On a regional level, the latter sentiment seems to predominate. In many ways it becomes a self-fulfilling cycle - for some reason it seems the phenomenon of salsa dancers who don't really like (or certainly have no passion for) salsa music is higher amongst instructors, and by de-Latinizing the music at their classes and events, they deter the people who are seeking some sort of Latin flavour from joining the scene.

    (In fact, even the fact that live music is so absent from the congress scene, as discussed elsewhere, relates to this issue.)

    A few years ago large numbers of dedicated salsa teachers defected to kizomba, which musically has little to no connection to salsa and mambo music. When you dance to a music you have no passion for, it's pretty easy to drop it.

    I've said all the above on this forum before, however as some of you have not been here for so long it's worth repeating.

    The good news I suppose is that there are still people out there who love classic salsa and mambo music, so maybe there is some sort of hope for the future.
  7. afincao

    afincao Son

    Here's a new group out of NY that has some great musicians and trying to do something a little different.

    Marcos likes this.
  8. terence

    terence Maestro 'Descarga' Cachao

    Inventive ?, yep,, salsa ? no.
  9. Dissonant Harmony

    Dissonant Harmony Rhythm Deputy

    A living example there:

    Why I went there: I thought "Swing" music was awesome, and I wanted to broaden my dancing...
    Why I left: Instead of hearing any swing, I got carpet-bombed by very annoying pop. I didn't even feel like I wanted to dance to it.

    Why I went there: I noticed some follows mixing Zouk while dancing with me. (but not while dancing with others). Apparently, they thought I was leading a fusion.
    Why I left: I understood why they thought so right in the first class. I would've stayed, but I hated the music.

    Why I went there: I didn't. Hated the music; didn't bother.
    Marcos and DJ Yuca like this.
  10. Marcos

    Marcos Son Montuno


    I wish them all the best, but it didn't do it for me. I would argue that its "a lot more different" vice "a little different" as you describe, and it sounds as if they are putting a Latin spin to American pop music; or to say it differently that the Latin is a modifier to an American pop music base. Their style of singing has nothing to do with any Latin style of singing, it's more English than Spanish, with more Anglo-American cultural references Latin-American. I would guess that the singers and songwriters are born and raised in the United States with marginal knowledge of Latin America; much like some of my US born and raised cousins are, and I wouldn't be surprised if this music appealed to them and other people with that type of background. For me, I have been more impressed by other fusion groups that have passport carrying Latinos doing lyrics like Yerba Buena, Soltron, and Ozomatli.

    Just to give you an idea of my tastes my most recent music purchases (yes purchased) from most to least recent are:
    El Gran Combo, Manolo Mairena, Pedrito Martinez, La Tribu de Abrante, Cheikh Lo, Herencia de Timbiqui, Jimmy Bosch, Mayito Rivera, Ceu, Maluma, Pepitin, Palo!

    I won't go into which of those those I liked most, but suffice it to say this is a very diverse grouping. But I am a purist in a sense that almost never buy or listen to American pop music (I don't live in USA or an English speaking country so I have little environmental exposure to it), I bought one album three years ago and my wife was shocked (shocked that I bought it, she did like the music). To further elaborate, I like a lot of Shakira's music, but I hated Fijacion Oral Vol 1. My shock at hating it was quickly replaced with understandable disappointment when I read the album cover notes and discovered the producer and all of the musicians were non Latino Americans, in this, which was supposed to have been an album for her base of Latinos. But many people liked that Shakira album, so good luck promoting Funk Salsa Urban.
  11. afincao

    afincao Son

    Well, what do you consider Salsa? Don't forget how the music evolved, Fania was fusing a ton of elements from other styles of English music that was popular at the time.
  12. afincao

    afincao Son

    Sounds like you have some good taste in music. I'm not promoting the group, just happen to know one of the guys in the group and this song popped up last week and when I saw the title of this thread, I thought it was appropriate. They're doing a Salsa remix of an English tune. I like some of the elements but would also change/add some things but that's just me.
  13. Groove On

    Groove On Sonero

    These songs sound musically confused. It sounds like 3 or 4 styles poorly arranged and mixed together. If I heard these in a club, the last thing I'd do is get up and dance. I might even think for a second that the DJ left the L/R fader somewhere in the middle :rofl:

    DJ Yuca likes this.
  14. Groove On

    Groove On Sonero

    Ok I'll throw out a couple of songs ... son Salsa? Si o no?

    We Don't Talk Anymore (cover by MANDINGA)

    Shape of You, Ed Sheeran (Remix by Antony Nova)

    Thinking Out Loud, Ed Sheeran (by Antony Nova)
    Last edited: Jul 11, 2017
  15. DJ Yuca

    DJ Yuca El Sabroso de Conguero

    I'm scared to listen to them.
    Groove On and Dissonant Harmony like this.
  16. Dissonant Harmony

    Dissonant Harmony Rhythm Deputy

    1st song: Complete "disrespect" to the Cuban rhythms. (The stress and accents revolve around pop). The production is very solid, but when it's too "solid" - you get "plastic"...and the vocalist appears to be auto-tuned.

    She also seems to be singing to impress, and not to express. This is something I really hate about singers. It sounds all fake...Now merely screaming "I'm a virtuoso" - that's one thing, but doing so while not even being one...That's being a "wannabe", and a very empty one. For some reason - such vocalists make me very angry; hence my harsh comment. S:

    2nd song: This song does have some "Salsa" moments, if you ignore the vocalist, and also some Timba ones.
    Lower-quality production; Instruments feel like they are in "different rooms". While I consider the first song a much much much better craft. This song, at least, doesn't annoy me. Which means I'd rest (and shrug) upon hearing both songs, but then I'll continue like nothing happening. The first song, however - will leave me with bad feelings...

    3rd song: Ignore the clip, and the section at 2:42~2:52 and 3:21~till the end, and you get a modern-sounding Salsa-Romantica / Timba.
    Sounds too bright to my liking, and I wish that the singer was quieter, and also that the music was more 'spacious'...(Once again, could be a bad rip / Youtube quality). Anyways: If I were to DJ to a crowd that requires "floor-fillers" of the sort there and there - I think that this song is actually great compromise!!!
  17. DJ Yuca

    DJ Yuca El Sabroso de Conguero

    If I heard Ed Sheeran in any form at a salsa night I would probably go home immediately and I would definitely never go there again.

    (However as a DJ, if I'm working for someone and they want me to play something and they supply me with a copy then I generally do as I'm told.)
    terence and Dissonant Harmony like this.
  18. Dissonant Harmony

    Dissonant Harmony Rhythm Deputy

    While I do advocate that the DJ should be an educator - His job is to make sure people dance...
    Sometimes the situation calls for songs that we do not like playing. /: (and as a pro, you know that much better than me).

    -As a dancer I do not mind songs that I do not like (or think shouldn't be played) - here and there. People with tastes other than mine are allowed to have fun as well. X:
    (So long as they do not make me angry).

    -As an (occasional, amateur) DJ I will always find a place for a few songs that I personally dislike. As a rule of thumb.

    Apart from the taste issue, there are also standards...And while the last song doesn't meet my own standard, it is still a much much much better alternative to...other songs. If I have to "feed" those who need such songs to have their fun, I'd take the ones which require that I compromise the least...
  19. DJ Yuca

    DJ Yuca El Sabroso de Conguero

    I managed to listen to approx. the 1st minute of all 3. They're the sort of songs that stopped me going to salsa events. Not my cup of tea - let's leave it at that.
    terence and Dissonant Harmony like this.
  20. Dissonant Harmony

    Dissonant Harmony Rhythm Deputy

    Not even trying to convince - they are very far from being mine, and I also did the same.

    -But here is a question: Assuming you are pushed into playing a "trash-song" during work -
    what would your lesser of two many evils be?
    Last edited: Jul 11, 2017

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