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Salsa / Merengue

Discussion in 'General Instruction [BG]' started by jive1, Nov 10, 2003.


  1. jive1

    jive1 Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jan 16, 2003
    Alexandria,VA
    Owner/Retailer: Jive Sound
    I hope to be auditioning with a working Salsa/Merengue band next week. Any tips for this style of music?
     
  2. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    Well these are two very differnet and distinct styles. Salsa is characterised by the Tumbao in the basslines - so the chord change is anticipated on the 4th beat of the preceding bar and the 1st beat of the bar is avoided.

    In fact virtually nobody in the band is playing on the 1 - so you need to be very aware of rhythmic accuracy and knowing where you are placing beats in the bar. So a normal salsa bassline will have notes on the 2-and tied to 3 and the 4 tied across the barline.

    Merengue is a squarer rhythm with very fast short notes in the bass - a two feel, but very staccato. It depends on complex conga rhythms but is much more straightforward for bass.

    My tip - is to lock in with the piano player - who will be playing rhythmic Montunos - and try to ignore the percussion!! ;)
     
  3. ole Jason

    ole Jason Supporting Member

    Apr 3, 2003
    Louisville, KY
    haha ignoring the percussion is the big thing for me. I did a gig a few weeks ago with a percussion group and they wanted me to play some kind of cowbell on some african tunes. And I thought it was hard ignoring everything else when I played bass... yuck.
     
  4. Bruce, are you sure he's not just talking about a new cooking job he has? :eek:




    I couldn't resist.;)
     
  5. jive1

    jive1 Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jan 16, 2003
    Alexandria,VA
    Owner/Retailer: Jive Sound
    I don't have the job yet, that's why I'm audtioning. Thanks Chef Bruce, I won't let the percussion get in the way of my cooking.