Puerto Rican Music in the United States
Music has always been a pervasive symbol of identity. It is a mode of expression that crosses gender, ethnicity and age. One need not understand the lyrics to identify with a musical genre; identification can be found through rhythm, tone of music, as well as other techniques in the music, unrelated to words. For example, most operas are in Italian and obviously everyone that attends an opera, does not speak or understand Italian. However, the audience is moved by the emotion conveyed through tone, facial expressions, and beat of the music. I believe this is relevant to the situation of Puerto Rican forms of music, and its success when Puerto Rican musicians migrated to the United States. Original forms had to be adopted to become popular in the United States, often assuming a heavier dance beat, but when the songs and musicians did become popular, it was not because a majority of Americans understood the lyrics in Spanish. For Americans, it was because the music provided lively background entertainment. However, for the Puerto Ricans, it meant much more. The music symbolized their background and struggles, what it means to be Puerto Rican.
In New York, Puerto Rican musical traditions evolved in accordance with societal change. This was necessary in a society, as Glasser describes “where Puerto Ricans lived among a constellation of constantly changing ethnic groups within a protean social environment”(Glasser, 7). In Puerto Rico there are diverse groups, with different traditions of politics, economics, and music. When Puerto Ricans migrate to the United States, they unite under an identity as “Puerto Ricans” but there is still diversity within. Furthermore, I believe it is the Ameri...
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... difficult as Americans commercialized the entire profession and employment became near obsolete for those trained musicians. In the U.S. music serves as a representation of the identity of the Puerto Rican, just as it does for other cultures. Puerto Ricans became disillusioned at the prospect of remaining in Puerto Rico as Rafael Hernández sang- “Piensa remediar la situación/del hogar, que es toda una ilusión.” (Glasser, 165) Music provides a socially acceptable way to express disgust and disillusionment with the status quo and communicate one's identity.
Glasser, Ruth, My Music is My Flag: Puerto Rican Musicians in New York and their Communities, 1917-1940. (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1996).
Oct. 29: Puerto Rican Music Between Rafael Hernandez and Rafael Cortijo. Guest Lecture by Prof. Lise Waxer, Music Dept., Trinity College
The promising advantages. In spite the market prices can represent the most relevant information about the stocks it is not so easy to properly construe this information. No doubt, only the large enough sample size of the number of funds can present the key information. Only benchmark can properly measure how efficiently the market works. One more fact in support to the work of Advising Funds – the biased statistics, this fund belongs to the survived ones which always produce the better results than many non surviving funds.
. For example, Regaeton is a hybridization of American hip-hop containing similar messages of sex and money as the American version, yet also political messages specific to their state. Salsa, a mashup of afro-caribbean rhythms from Cuba and Puerto Rico (Manuel, 1994) originally began in the New York by Hispanic Caribbean migrants as means to hold onto national identity, however it has resisted American influence artistically even though commercially it is distributed by major American music corporations. Mexican music has gone through many transformations, Texano, Mariachi, Banda-some of these transformations can be attributed to Mexico’s shared border with the United States. When you think of Samba and Bossa Nova, Brazil is what comes to mind. However, the globalization of these two styles of music has pushed other styles of Brazilian music to the wayside into regional categories.
Music is essential to any culture. Its a vital part of being human and can significantly impact our lives. No matter where one is from, music is an escape that everyone seeks because they can relate to it. This social link keeps us tied to the world, even with different cultures and languages. Afro-Latinos have helped shape the music in America, many times with help from other cultures. Many types of music Hispanics have produced have impacted the United States. One of these types of music is named Bachata. Hispanics in the US have helped shape bachata, even though it originated in the Dominican Republic. With its profound lyrics many can relate to, its catchy rhythm and simple dance, bachata is as popular in the US as it is in Central America. In the 1980s and 1990s, the growing Dominican population in the United States became an important fan base for bachata. Dominican Yorks influence of traditional bachata with the artistic and cultural diversity of life in New York, making bachata one of the fastest growing music genres of the 21st century (Pacini Hernandez.)
The diversity of musical styles that exist in the United States includes Western European “classical” music (art music) and a number of “popular” music styles derived largely from Western European ways of making music. These styles include pop, folk, country, and rock. Other styles, including jazz, blues, and various ethnic music, are the result of a blending of cultures and traditions. All these styles constitute an important part of music in American society, styles that constitute “American music.”
Utz, Christian, and Frederick Lau. Vocal Music and Cultural Identity in Contemporary Music. New York: Routledge, 2013. Print.
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