Salsa Music, Calico Lifeblood

You walk through the dark entrance, leaving the tropical night behind. Suddenly, the sound waves overflow. If you sweat, your heart beats to bass, bongo, bells and brass. The walls seem to be pulsing. The sticky smell of perspiration mixed with the vapor attacks you. As you go into dark eyes, broken by hypnotic multi-colored stanzas, you realize that they are not closing the walls, but the dancers … rumors of dancers, weaving and twisting, twinkling bodies, knives blasting in quarters … the time has come. You fill your lungs with a pungent odor, tighten your belt and immerse yourself. Welcome to Changora Cali (Colombia) – One of the hottest Salsa nightclubs in Latin America.

Cali, a modern city and main festival, is located in the heart of the Valley. When Colombians say "Valley," in the Cauca Valley, the Garden of Eden is less than a hundred and fifty miles long and fifteen miles wide between the coastal mountains and the Central Cordillera. Until the end of the century, this ValIey was only a rural setting.

Back then, with a population of about 15,000, the Cauca Valley was largely a livestock country, spread out along the "haciendados". These were proud, almost astonishing men who grew their flocks and herds of cattle. Some have planted sugar cane to produce a "sweetener" sweetener and to distill the clear but powerful "aguardiente" crystal that is still in use today. Life was slow, measured, patriarchal and unalterable.

It has been said that the Cauca region is southern Colombia for the United States. In fact, there are similarities. In rare times, "hidalgos" embellishments were "decorated" with velvet or scarlet fabric embroidered with gold and silver buttons, their silk waist belts and shirt lips were the most beautiful, "says Kathleen Romoli. Colombia: Gateway to South America. And Southern States As in the colonial rhymes, many slaves were imported to work the fields and serve the Gentiles.

Time has brought many changes. At present, the valleys are full of sugar cane plantations. The mechanized production of cotton, rice and cattle has become the most important agricultural area of ​​the Cauca Valley in Colombia, after "King Coffee". The industry has grown with economic growth. A quiet colonial town in 1900, Cali has become a major manufacturing hub with more than a thousand industrial estates

There is salsa in the air

With all the changes, Cali retains the charm of the home, a different personality from other cities, the atmosphere you found in the Caribbean. Romoli describes it well:

Today, Cali's most striking thing is not the square imposing government buildings and rows of taxis on the avenues of giant palm trees, nor the neighborhoods and churches with modem cities, whose bells instead of investigating the chime tones like Bogota, or the busy factories. It is a whirlwind of cheerfulness, almost tender, not a city of many amusements. Cali is not a homosexual because of commercial facilities for organized diversions, but because of the grace of the god.

Cali attracts travelers from all over the place; tourists, businessmen, backpackers, scientists and students. And of course, salsa enthusiasts and salsa artists. Recording studios, "rumberias", "discothèques" and "viejotecas" are numerous.

What is Cali's appeal? The cheerful atmosphere of the city? Spectacular sunsets? The natural beauty of the Andes rise? The gallant beauty of his women? Maybe June is a climate that is always there. Or could it be its remarkable purity? Many Colombian towns are clean, but Cali is so clean. Or maybe they are trees and flowers, a red and purple rumble of fascination on the walls, a golden cup thrown from the walls, a light trumpet bell ringing, a poinsettia scrub, a wonderful garden, a magenta leaf and a carmine flower or other feathery green (white or pink flowers). pale); also in winter, humble birds with iridescent green bellies bloom in winter.

No Salsa No Dates

Cali has them all. But undoubtedly, the main attraction for many in this wonderful city is Salsa music. The sensual and tropical rhythms of the sauce lose the lives of two million plus Caleños. You will hear Salsa on every bus. Go for a walk, go to school or shop for salsa in the air. And, of course, there are nearly two dozen local radio stations on nearly every Salsa. Throughout the country, 24 hours a day, Salsa pulls out loudspeakers in the streets, parks, shops, cars, portable radios and private homes. Cali Salsa lives and breathes. But why salsa? Many other traditions, styles and types of folk music flourish in Cali (including traditional Cumbia, where machete-driven dancers surround women soaked in exploded skirts). What makes Salsa so special? Vallenatos is, after all, a brand of folk music that has its roots in the Spanish conquistadors, especially as Carlos Vives sings the Colombian Grammy Award winners. The Boleros (check out Luis Miguel's "Invisible") and Mereng continue to have strong following here.

Why is this style rooted so deeply in culture? The answer for fans is simple: "I love salsa music." Whatever the reason for the universal reputation for quality, Salsa music is more than just a dance. It is an essential social skill, my friend Carmen said, "No sauces – no dates." You can't meet other people unless you dance. "And that's why there are saucy dance schools all over the city. You pay for lessons per hour. Prices are $ 2 to $ 6 per hour more private. -Learning only. Group classes are fast paced. schools are not the place to go to learn, but to practice and refine your movements or pick up some new ones. They are a "good place to meet your neighbors. It is important to dance well or be boring," says Sofia, a Salsa fan.

Cali is known as the "Capital of Salsa, the World," a title that came from Cuba's post-Cuban Fidel and often shares with New York City. But those who may have an "Exceptional Capital of the World" will also agree that Cali is no doubt the "Salsa Capital of South America." The best Latin salsa artists, like Jerry "54th Street" in New York City, fly to cover their stuff. At one point you can see all the famous salsa names. Artists Cuban "Salsa Queen" Celia Cruz; Guitarist, singer and songwriter Juan Luis Guerra from the Dominican Republic; Frank Raul Grillo, a Cuban American also known as Machito; Reuben Blades, a well-known singer, songwriter, actor and politician from Panama, famous for his musical innovations and traditional salsa; Willie Colon; Oscar d 'Leon and others.


And you don't have to go far to hear all the styles and variants of this city of dancers. Juanchito, with its 120 hottest dance halls, is the twisted heart of Calico's Salsa night. Every year, two hundred thousand people flock to this eastern district to party. Cali nightclubs and "viejotecas" young and not so young. Younger Latinos are usually the softer, more sentimental music known as Salsa Romantica, known by bandmates Eddie Santiago and Tito Nieves. Internationally known salsa singers in the 1990s, Linda "India" Caballero and Mark Anthony. Puerto Rico's "Puerto Rico Power" orchestra is another hot band of Cali and Puerto Rican fans.

While it is exciting to hear that famous salsa music performers abroad, don't forget to mix Cali with some of the world's most renowned bands and Salsa musicians. Classic and innovative. It is worth going to Calira to hear the sounds of the unusual sounds of Jairo Varela and Grupo Niche. Or other artists like "Son de Cali" on the Caliko Salsa scene who inject new blood like "Canela Orchestra" and Lisandro Meza. These and Kike Santander, Joe Arroyo, and Eddy Martinez's classic Salsa floods air and flow with "coca-colos" (late-20s teenage girls) and "queues" in nightclubs, sauces, and even. At 35 years old, in old-age shops that draw crowds.

When I came to Calira in 1995, I thought my salsa was fine. After all, I picked up some gentle moves from Puerto Rico’s hottest beauty pageants this summer in San Juan. When I returned to my home state of Pennsylvania, on Friday or Saturday night, we had the opportunity to mingle with Latinos and water them in Hispanic water. I did double speed on a rectangular pattern, and I would add swirls and twists to the heavy pace. I had no problem getting and keeping dance partners. Then, in Miami, during the Labor Day weekend recession, I met a Latin lover. Later that week I was invited to dinner and dance at one of the main Salsa clubs in the city of "La Cima" to show my moves. He was excited. We were married a year later and a couple of years later we moved to his hometown of Colombia.

Colombian salsa is a different beast. The style, rhythm and rhythm are similar in other places, but in the dance floor it is a different story. My feet knew the pace, but 1 behaved as if I were wearing Bozo shoes. For a time, it stuck in the middle places like "Cuarto Venina" on the deep brown and knee-deep banks of the Cali River. It is heard alone, there is no dance here. You can soak up the music in the costumes and colds of "Costeña". It can be a nice touch for a Sunday afternoon. They are currently my Latin cutie and 1 "cuchos" (over 35). It's been ten years. We're still here, dancing to salsa. And I'm still showing my moves.