Salsa vs Bachata Music, let’s break down the differences so you feel like you #belong on the dance floor.
Are you going out to clubs and not sure if they are playing Salsa or Bachata? I used to be just like you, not sure what’s what, and would often ask another dancer to tell me what I should be dancing to.
How To Tell If It’s Salsa
“An easier way to describe Salsa music is how it does NOT sound like other types of Latin American popular music.”
Since Salsa music has so many musical origins, it can be really difficult to distinguish between what is a Salsa song and what isn’t. distinguishing characteristics of Salsa music are: 4/4 time signature, Son Clave and Tumbao rhythms, Montuno Piano
Unless you have a background in music, the above 3 characteristics probably mean nothing to you. An easier way to describe Salsa music is how it does NOT sound like other types of Latin American popular music.
Merengue is a straight 2 beat dance (almost no syncopation). Bachata is a straight 4 beat dance with a prevalence of a syncopated guitara line and a clear lack of any “hard” piano, brass (trumpet, trombone) lines. ChaChaCha resembles Salsa music the most as it feels like “really slow” salsa/mambo. ChaChaCha can be distinguished by its emphasis of the double tumbao beat on counts 4+5 and 8+1 (the “cha-cha-cha”)
How To Tell If It’s Bachata
“Bachata does not feature harsh-sounding percussion instruments like claves or timbales.”
Bachata music has an 8 beat phrase. Distinguishing characteristics of Bachata music that differentiates it from other Latin music are:
* The prevalence of a continuous, syncopated guitar line (Guitarra)
* Note the absence of any “hard” percussive line (unlike Salsa, Bachata does not feature harsh-sounding percussion instruments like claves or timbales). If a piano is present, the musical line is usually very melodic and “flowing”
* The “heartbeat” of the music is kept in tempo by bongos (a higher-pitched drum than congas) and a guiro or maraca type shakers
The best way to figure out Salsa vs Bachata music is to listen more to it. As you are driving to work, at home cooking and we hope these playlists will help.
I can’t wait to welcome you to our big family, have you coming in week to week, having fun, connecting with new friends and letting lose to amazing Latin songs. Click here to check our current schedule.
If you have any questions you would like me to answer here are some ways you can contact me: message me on Instagram (torontodanceSalsa), on Twitter (#torontodanceSalsa), on Facebook (Toronto Dance Salsa) or email me at [email protected].