What is Salsa?
“Cuban & Puerto Rican musicians in New York coined the phrase in New York in the 1970’s.”
We’re talking about the dance, not the delicious South American condiment.
The origins of the word “Salsa” as the name of a dance has been a source of debate for decades. The most popular (and possibly accepted) theory is that Cuban and Puerto Rican musicians in New York coined the phrase in New York in the 1970’s, to describe the spicy fusion of music they were creating out of the rhythms and motifs of Cuban son montuno, guaracha, chachacha, mambo and bolero.
It is said that the evolution of the music drove the evolution of the dance – emigrants to North America from Cuba, Puerto Rico and Colombia in the 1920’s brought their dances and music to the neighborhoods and clubs of New York, Miami and Los Angeles. As the new form of “Salsa” music swept the continent in the 1970’s and 1980’s, those foundation dances – what we like to refer to as the “Roots” of salsa – morphed into the modern styles of “Salsa” (the dance) that we dance today.
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