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Famous Bachata Musicians

 Bachata is a style of Latin American music and dance originating from the country and rural neighborhoods of the Dominican Republic. While the original
term for this popular style and genre was “amargue" ("bitter music"), the subjects of the lyrics in this music are often the romantic kind dealing with the
realities of heartbreak and sadness in relationships. The now common term bachata, is a more mood-neutral name for the genre. There is some
disagreement as to the use of the word, which means “garbage” in the rural areas of the country, springing from the fact that players of the music often
used backyard objects of ordinary use such as trashcans and fences. On the other hand, to most citizens it means “to party” and this is exactly what
the music inspires! In addition, some suggest that bachata is derived from the Italian Ballata which, centuries ago, was a popular form of music in Italy.

Like Flamenco music was to the working class Gypsies of Spain, bachata is to the working class servants emerging in the 1960s out of the Dominican
Republic. Since the 1990s, bachata music has gained world renown and recognition and is now popular among people worldwide.
In can be said that bolero, another romantic Latin-American style, was the foundation or bachata. Along time meringue, also from the Dominican
Republic, has added it’s fast paced dance music to influence bachata, along with the variety of latin American guitar styles.

The structure of the music is 4/4, and most notably the use of an amplified electric or acoustic guitar along with flanger, echo and/or reverb, can be
heard. Arpeggiated chords in the melody are basic and standard, along with syncopation provided by an additional guitar mixed at lower volume levels.
Other instruments include the bass guitar, the guira (before the 1990s, maracas were used), and bongos which further add to the basic beat.

The traditions of Latin American guitar music is where bachata derived from, originally named for clubs and bars where singers and guitarists sang in.
According to Bachata: Music of the People, By Giovanni Savino in 2003, the Beatles “Till There Was You” from 1963 further inspired the genre. El
Salvador had bachata-like music prior to the early 1960s and some would lay claim to this as an influence as well.
Merengue and salsa music gained much popularity, and bachata musicians were faced with a grass roots production and distribution until the genre
gained popularity. Bachata is usually performed by male vocalists. Some of the early bachateros are José Manuel Calderón (musician), Eladio Romero
Santos, Edilio Paredes, Luis Segura, Ramon Cordero, and Rafael Encarnación.

Today’s bachata uses more electric guitar and rhythmatic and goove-like phrasing than the earlier form. Some artists today are Aventura (who has
international renown including in Europe), Juan Luis Guerra, Monchy y Alexandra, Luis Vargas, Andy Andy, Antony Santos, Ramon Torre,s Sonia
Silvestre, Richie Ortega, Domenic Marte, Xtreme, Elvis Martinez, Leonardo Paniagua, Los Toros Band, and Joe Veras.

As a dance, bachata has the footwork of 3 simple steps taken to 4 beats of music that produce a back and forth or sideways motion, along with sensual
hip and body movements. As the tale of the songs tell of romance and heartbreak, the dance is often romantic and sentimental as well.