Society & Culture & Entertainment Music

What Are the Types of Spanish Music?


    • The Spanish-sung music of old is known as traditional Latin. This style may be an old folk song or a ranchera (the music of the Mexican revolution). Generally, the traditional style uses conservative methods of performance, meaning electric instruments and pop hooks are not as prominent. Ballads, boleros and love songs are all popular within the traditional genre. Banda is also a form of traditional Latin music, originating in the early 20th century but modernized in the 1990s. It does not feature vocalists, but a heavier brass section for melodies.

    Latin Pop

    • Modern Spanish-sung music is generally referred to as Latin pop. Famous artists like Selena, Shakira and Paulina Rubio were all Latin pop stars. There are many sub-genres of Latin pop, including Tejano (a combination of ranchero, blues and country), reggaeton (a combination of reggae, Latin pop and rap), and rock en Espanol. Young music fans from Hispanic backgrounds usually listen to Latin pop more than older generations, who stick to traditional Latin music.

    Other Styles

    • There are a plethora of other Latin styles, but there a few major genres to be noted. Salsa is most popular as a dance, but its origins are of Caribbean and Afro-Cuban influences. Merengue is a fast-paced two-step dance music from the Dominican Republic. Tango is still a popular dance, which originated in Buenos Aires, featuring the cheek-to-cheek, slow, strident steps. Flamenco blends multiple cultural styles into one form of music, including Gypsy, Muslim, Spanish and Jewish genres. And samba is the most popular Brazilian music, a rhythmic genre that is reminiscent of Carnival.

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