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Re: Rumba Rhythm
Posted by terence2
11/23/2012  3:23:00 AM

The Q was " WHY " the 4 was dominant..

and, I was probably dancing and teaching indigenous ( and BR )latin rhythms, before you were born ( IN the States with latinos )also trained with Laird in the 40s, and, DO you know Intern. Rumbas origins, and its antecedent ? and its NOT danzon.

ALL indigenous latin, in the Rumba genre ( an umbrella term ) is Son and Clave driven.

If you have a dis agreement with this, then may I suggest you take your posit to Salsa Forums, where there has just been a discussion on this very topic,( Son ) by NY latin musicians.
Re: Rumba Rhythm
Posted by dancelover2012
11/23/2012  9:14:00 AM
In 1947 Mr. Pierre visited Havana, modified the Cuban Rumba which is played with 6 or 7 steps in a phrase (2 bars) of 8 beats. This Cuban Rumba is played with the Clave and Conga.. The modified Rumba (now is the int Rumba) is played only 3 steps in a bar of 4 beats. It is very different, can you dance int Rumba with the Clave?
Re: Rumba Rhythm
Posted by O.Z.
11/23/2012  5:11:00 PM
To dance a Rumba we do not have to know what is a Clave or a Son. Leave that for the musicians. Most of them couldn't dance their way out of a paper bag.
In 1947 the Rumba was that square thing which today would be considered a joke
I used to have a tape by Doris Laval who with Pierre helped to standardize Competition Latin American.It only has a fleeting resemblence to todays Latin in particular the Rumba. Who among us can remember when The Rumba was played at 30 BPM. Today it is officially down to 25 BPM.
Re: Rumba Rhythm
Posted by dancelover2012
11/23/2012  6:48:00 PM
Thanks OZ and terrence2, maybe you are old people playing rumba for a long time.
But the question " WHY the beat 4 was dominant" is still unclear.
Re: Rumba Rhythm
Posted by terence2
11/24/2012  12:41:00 AM
Because thats the way the music is written.. the 4 , is stressed on Conga, Base and Tumbao .

It occurs on the 2nd bar ,of a 2 bar phrase. Latinos ,and the prof. teachers in Cuba ,teach that to their students .

There is a discussion ongoing in another site that, ALL latin music in the dance scene is Son based . Its been posited by some very well respected biographers ( latinos )ergo. "4" is the anchor, if you will .

Go to Salsa Forums.. there is a discussion on the Music section that ,has great detail on this subject. Its under" Son " .

To remember.. this rhythm structure ( Clave and Son ) has been around long before the dances we see today, were invented .
Re: Rumba Rhythm
Posted by terence2
11/24/2012  12:11:00 AM

As per many times, and not unusual in the BR world, your lack of complete info is showing.

Firstly..The current form of Rumba was based upon 2 Americanised dances.. namely Bolero and Mambo . The ORIGINAL break pont in Mambo was taught on FOUR, and Bolero was "3".It changed in 46/47 to "2" .

The break in Mambo was changed to "2", primarily to co-incide with the clave strike on 2 of the 2nd bar ( as salsa is danced today and Son " which is 4 dominant " ).

So.. you only had half of the "story ". Most of the basic foundation steps in Bolero and Intern. style Rumba are identical, and, you can also add WCS as a contributor..

To add a little more confusion to the discussion, Rumba is really an all encompassing term ,and in reality ,is incorrect in its current usage .

Re: Rumba Rhythm
Posted by terence2
11/24/2012  12:29:00 AM
That " square " thing, is the VERY foundation of a Cuban dance genre, namely Danzon, it, and Guaracha, are both forms of indigenous square Rumba styles still danced in Cuba ( and many exiled cubans in the States// also, taught in all the chain schools ).
Intern. latin is about as far removed from its antecednet, as one can get.Its become a caricature .

And Im sure, you , like many others, believe that what you are dancing as " Rumba " is correct.. its a HYBRID . And by the way , I was trained in the UK style of BR and latin.. I only got my eyes opened , after moving to the US.

Re: Rumba Rhythm
Posted by dancelover2012
11/24/2012  11:38:00 PM
Many thanks for your knowlege sharing, terence2!
I still have one question: Walter Laird said beat 2 in Rumba music is still dominant. Is this right? I still have doubt about something written in Walter Laird book, it is not repaired for a long time.
Re: Rumba Rhythm
Posted by Waltz123
11/26/2012  3:54:00 PM
Walter Laird said beat 2 in Rumba music is still dominant. Is this right?

That depends on what he means by "dominant".

In all Western music with standard time signatures (3/4, 4/4, 6/8, etc), beat 1 is always considered the "strongest" beat, as it has in inherent, built-in implied strength known as Agogic stress. It is this natural strength that allows your ear to recognize which is the first beat, and it's always true, no matter where the accents in the music fall. There can even be no music at all on the 1 (i.e. a rest on beat 1 for the entire orchestra), and it's still considered the strongest beat.

In 4/4 music, the order of strength is as follows: 1, 3, 2, 4. You can actually extend that to any equal pair of musical durations -- two beats, two measures, two 16-bar phrases -- and the first is always considered stronger than the second. So for dancers who like to count to 8, you get the following order of strength: 1, 5, 3, 7, 2, 6, 4, 8.

All that being said, dancing is far more an artistic endeavor than it is a mathematical one, and so what you choose to follow will depend on your own sense of what sounds or feels "right". For example, one might choreograph a piece so that the dancers' feet follow the melody, or perhaps a particular instrument, such as the bass. A dancer might alternatively choose to create his own melody by dancing on time with the tempo, but following no instrument at all. In this way he is acting as a separate instrument, layering a new rhythm into the fabric of the orchestration.

That's not to say that all is fair and anything goes, however. Certain choices will be considered more "musical" or artistically preferable based on how well they complement the music. In ballroom dancing we tend to start with a repeatable and recognizable structure that follows a basic rhythmic pattern known to complement the music to which it is being danced, and add variations of timing that work as accents of their own. The most musical dancers will respond to the particular piece and adjust accordingly.

As for International Rumba, I am of the opinion that it has evolved so dramatically from its musical roots, that all justification for breaking on beat 2 has long since faded away. People are so attached to the 2,3,4,1 rhythm that their brain accepts it as correct, the same way your brain will grow attached to a particular rendition of a tune after years of listening that when you hear a different version, you are very unlikely to accept it as better or even equal. If an extremely accomplished Latin dancer were to somehow have the rhythm erased from his brain altogether, then be presented with any Rumba song from the last 50 years and asked what beat sounds the most musical for the forward break, I would expect him with absolute certainty to say either "1" or "3".

The clave to which people often refer as a justification for breaking on 2 is nothing more than a subtle background instrument in today's Rumba music. The more authentic the music, the more the rest of the band is likely to complement the clave rhythm in some ways, but it is a rare passage of music where the whole band plays a concerted clave. Typical orchestration is more disconcerted and includes sounds on every beat, such that the clave, while present, is arguably a weaker force to follow than the natural agogic stress of the basic beat structure. My conclusion, therefore, is that it takes a very authentic and clave-strong Afro Cuban piece of music before one should be inclined to follow the clave over basic agogic structure, and even then, a case could be made either way.

But -- After having said all that, factoring in what's socially acceptable, I still recommend you break on 2. It may be less musical, but since most people don't know that, the point is moot. Everybody will *think* you're more musical if you break on 2. And isn't that the point?

Isn't it?

Re: Rumba Rhythm
Posted by dancelover2012
11/28/2012  9:27:00 AM
Thanks for your explaination with scholar knowlege. Thank to it I know more.

But maybe something I forget to make it clear: I only want to know about Rumba music, not how to dance Rumba, that is, I want to know about the dominant beat in Rumba music using in world dance competitions. I do not mention about we should break on weak beat or strong beat in Rumba dancing.

1. Listen to any rumba song now, without Afro-Cuban Clave, it is easy to recognize one strong beat follow by a weak beat. Is the strong beat 1 (and 3) and the weak beat 2 (and 4)? The question is the same with "Is rumba played normal (agogic stress) or syncopated?"

2. In Rhythm To Results - Rumba of Ton Greten, he said Rumba music has a strong beat on 4. You can hear the clave and bongo at below links



You can hear only beat 4 is strong, the remain beat 1/2/3 are weak. In this way, beat 4 is modified to be a percussive accent. And this form is not a syncopation.

3. But in Walter Laird book, page 37, he wrote: percussive accents associated with the 2nd beat (slight) and the 4th beat (predominant) of each bar. In this way, Rumba music is played syncopated.

My question is that what is the "right" Rumba music for world dance competitions?

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