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Latin rhythms and how to play them

Discussion in 'General Instruction [BG]' started by rainbownorth, Aug 14, 2007.


  1. I raided my mates music collection the other day. Hes got over a Terabytes worth of music, and basically I got all of his latin and afro-cuban music, of which he has a lot. Its stuff like Tito Puente, Poncho Sanchez, Bobby Montez,Eddie and Charlie Palmieri, the list goes on. Im really enjoying listening, but I'd like to get more practical with my interest in latin music. My drummer and I are trying more these days to lock in, and I'd love to try some latin rhythms and see how we go.

    So what I was wondering is if anyone can give me some hints as to how to tackle the rhythms. It seems like there arent too many challenging chords or scales, its the more the rhythm that defines the feel of this music. So what do you guys know about it, and how can you help me?

    I realise that just using the term 'latin' is very broad, but any specific knowledge of different rhythms would be helpful. eg. mambo, bossanova, samba, salsa, flamenco, anything you guys know of would be great.Any general advice is handy as well.
     
  2. DocBop

    DocBop

    Feb 22, 2007
    Los Angeles, CA
    There has been a number of threads discussing Latin rhythms and recommend books and etc. Try doing a search and then post a more specific question.
     
  3. Uncle Ernie

    Uncle Ernie

    Mar 10, 2007
    Queretaro
    Get Oscar Stagnaro's book
     
  4. chicagodoubler

    chicagodoubler

    Aug 7, 2007
    Chicago, that toddling town
    Endorsing Artist: Lakland, Genz Benz
    I worked out of every one of those books, and my favorite is Funkifying the Clave.

    However, I didn't get compliments on playing these styles by natives till I started transcribing the bass lines. Did over 20 rhythm charts for my old salsa band, and when I got done, cats couldn't believe I wasn't from Cuba.

    Oh yeah buying a baby bass doesn't hurt either.

    If you're serious, join a group that plays these styles.


    BTW, careful with the terminology. Brazilian is a completely different bag, and poses its own set of problems...
     
  5. DocBop

    DocBop

    Feb 22, 2007
    Los Angeles, CA
    +1 Very important.

    The simplistic break down is Brazilian styles (Samba, Bossa Nova) and Afro Cuban styles. Basically Brazillian styles accent the One. Afro-Cuban accents the 4. Think about that when you listen to some Latin CD's (using the term genericly) and you will hear it. Try clapping just the accents while listening to internalize it. Then playing it will be much easier.
     
  6. chicagodoubler

    chicagodoubler

    Aug 7, 2007
    Chicago, that toddling town
    Endorsing Artist: Lakland, Genz Benz
    +1 on Stagnaro's book.

    Also check out the monster, Sal Cuevas!!! Although the play along CD's are awesome in all these books, you're really not going to get the feel til you learn the tradition and do some transcription.

    I forgot to mention- learn the basic percussion parts. When I was first learning salsa 10 years ago, I learned how to play all the basic patterns on Congas, timbales, cowbell, etc... And later, with Brazilian music, I bought a pandiero, learned the basic samba pattern, and realized it was the most difficult instrument I'd ever tried playing!:(
     
  7. ras1983

    ras1983

    Dec 28, 2004
    Sydney, Australia
    +2 to stagnaro's book.

    it was given to me by my teacher. the play along CD's are great, everything is transcribed so it makes it easier to get an initial understanding of the different rythms that stagnaro uses.

    a great starting point.
     
  8. Uncle Ernie

    Uncle Ernie

    Mar 10, 2007
    Queretaro
    IMO flamenco is not a latin rhythm, but rather a gypsy/arabic influenced genre... there's rumba flamenca though, which feels like a mix of flamenco with afro-caribbean flavors.
     

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