Mexico - Cinco de Mayo Music!
Music to Celebrate Cinco de Mayo
Mexican music terms can sometimes be a bit confusing. During the Mexican-American war (1840’s) Corrido was the popular musical form, which are long ballads that narrate issues (popular or political) of the times and it also celebrates heroic stories. Almost the entire war was played using corridos. As the years went by, music evolved into different styles. Themes changed and they often sang about migrant workers that worked north of the border, but they included stories of those in the drug trade causing them to become topics of great controversy.
Mexico’s history has many different musical styles and influences. Norteno (means northern) bands is one of the popular forms of music in urban and rural areas of northern Mexico. The polka was another major influence on Mexican music played by norteno bands. Tejano music is similar to norteno but evolved around Mexico-Texas border and it has more of a modern sound having the addition of hip-hop and disco elements. Banda bands are big band style with brass ensembles with heavy emphasis on the percussion. The bands usually consist of 10-20 members
I am displaying several videos of the different types of music found in Mexico and this is what you might here played at the Cinco de Mayo celebrations.
Juan Acuña Y El Terror Del Norte – Me Siento Picudo
Norteno Music from the 1960s
The above video is some of the first Norteno music, which was very popular, but when I listened to today’s norteno music it was entirely different, It was what I would refer to as gangster rap. The singer used his middle finger a lot and the language would get me kicked off Hubpages.
Golpes en el Corazon - Los Tigres del Norte & Paulina Rubio
Personally, I have always been fond of Spanish classical guitar music. The grandfather of guitars used most often for classical music known as the nylon string guitar has been used for over four centuries with the shape being the same for 100 years. Its unique sound is due to the nylon strings. It typically has 6 nylon strings with the 3 base-strings being wound with a metal thread. The classical guitar is well known for its encircling finger picking technique. This allows the solo rendition of melody, harmony and the polyphony.
This guitar is unique because of the strings are plucked with the fingers or finger nails, and the shape of the guitar a bit different,and because of the the construction and material. All types of music may be played on this guitar although classical is part of the instrument’s core repertoire. Sometimes the term modern classical guitar (also known as the Spanish Guitar) is used to distinguish the classical guitar from older forms of guitar such as the baroque guitars with only 5 strings. This guitar is usually played in a seated position with the guitar resting on the left lap and the left foot is then on a footstool.
Antonio Torres Juardo is revered among guitarist for his designs. Born in Spain, he was an apprentice carpenter at the age of 14. He met the renowned guitarist and composer Julian Arcas in 1850 and that is when he began to build guitars in earnest. He redesigned the guitar to increase its volume. He made his guitars larger, plus he fitted them with thinner, hence lighter soundboards that were arched in both directions, making possible by a system of fan-bracing for strength. He was very secretive about his methods so there were no apprentices in his shop. He built 12 guitars a year until his death at age 75.
You really can't talk about Mexican music and not mention Carlos Santana. Carlos Augusto Alves Santana was born July 20, 1947, is a Mexican rock guitarist. His father was a Mariachi violinist and taught Carlos to play. He started playing in Tijuana in 1955 in bands in nightclubs on the Tejuana strip.
He became famous in the late 1960’s and the early 1970’s along with his band Santana. Santana pioneered rock, salsa and juzz fusion. The band uses Latin percussion instruments and features Carlos melodic blues-based guitar lines.
He experienced a resurgence of popularity in the late 1990s. The Rolling Stones magazine named him the 15th greatest guitarist of all times in their magazine. He has won 10 Grammy awards and 3 Latin Grammy Awards.
Santana - Maria Maria [TheWraith]
Charo - a Flamboyant classical Guitariest
Charo is a well known classical guitar player born January 15, 1951. As a young girl, she studied guitar under Andres Segovia, one of the fathers of modern classical guitar music. She studied classical and flamenco guitar. She came to the U.S. in the '70s and married the much older Spanish bandleader 66 year of Xavier Cugat when she was 16. She divorced him and became an American citizen in 1977. She is a comedian, as well as, a guitar player.
Antonio Banderas y Los Lobos – Canción del Mariachi
In conclusion, Mexico has a long history of a great variety of music. I displayed numerous videos so you could hear the wide variety of instruments and singing styles. I doubt there is a Cinco de Mayo celebration anywhere that doesn't have a lot of music.
© 2010 Pamela Oglesby