Category Archives: salsa technicals

Best Salsa Dancing application for iPhone and Android

Now they can watch and learn over 100 salsa dance moves, going from beginner to advanced, where ever they are! We are now on iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad and Android devices. See the videos below for details.

POCKET SALSA FOR IPOD TOUCH, IPHONE AND IPAD

To download Pocket Salsa for iPhone or iPod Touch from the iTunes AppStore, go tohttp://addicted2salsa.com/iphone .

Pocket Salsa for Android Devices

To install from the Android Market

Go to the Android Market Webstore here: http://market.android.com/details?id=com.addicted2salsa.pocketsalsa or  you can watch this video!.

Salsa Technicals : Playing with the music … Alex Lima

Well, got back from LA Congress (in one piece). However, more on that story (and its videos later on). However, I'd like to talk about playing with the music – since I finally found some video that someone took of Alex Lima one of my favorite solo dancers that really understand how to choreograph to the music. His solo choreography is amazingly fast, precise and fun to watch. I saw Alex Lima perform at Palm Springs several months ago, but at that time I was without a camera. Regardless, pay attention to the song that is being played as he dances to it. Notice how the footwork and body movements are nicely synchronized to the fluidness of the song. Of course, this is a video – but I remembered watching it live was an amazing experience.

Salsa Technicals: Simplicity in Movement

Again, the master of movement. Now, this video was submitted in the videoclips section – and usually I don't post information about it here, unless its important. You can see how easily he moves through all the SIMPLE patterns. I had received an email 2 days ago about a guy just starting to learn salsa and wanting to do complicated patterns (Mayan style) in order to show people that he knew how to salsa. But the fact is – it is NOT about complicated patterns – it is about being a good dancer. What do I mean by a good dancer? Let me reiterate for the 1000 time:

– Be smooth in your motions. Better to do a simple pattern well, than a complicated one horribly.
– Take good care of your follow. She must get through the pattern before you do.
– Let your pattern have fun. The more the follow has fun, the more you will be looked at as a great dancer.
– Add flavor to your step. Adding simple body motions and arm styling helps show that you are comfortable with what you are doing and can really shake it (in a smooth way).
– Ladies love to spin. Be a good lead to help them perform double and triple turns. Spin, spin, spin – smoothly.

There is a lot more that goes into it but those are the biggest ones that I need to keep reiterating to everyone who is starting off. IT TOOK ME YEARS TO REALIZE THIS, so I'm helping cut the red-tape.

One last thing for the ladies that I'd like to point out in this video – this lady is an amazing spinner (and with Milton even more). At around time 55sec (or -2:10)  – she starts spinning. You might say 'whooptee-do'. But the amazing part is that she speeds up in the middle of her spinning. The fact in spinning is that your fastest spin is your first one because it provides you the momentum you need for the rest. It is hard to increase your speed in the middle of spinning – WITHOUT throwing you off balance and staying in control of your timing. Simply amazing!

 

Salsa Technicals: The Masters of Body Movement [UPDATED]

Another great piece by Hacha y Machete. These are again some of my favorite dancers in the world salsa scene. They are Victor and Bruju (you've probably seen them in many videos that I post). They are here performing their famous salsa piece entitled "Silencio" which means 'Silence'. Now, its not completely salsa music, but it has a great beat to it – and just the control, precision and fluidity of body movement is amazing to watch. Sad thing is that the actual performance is much longer – and some how the poster of this video cut out some of the other great parts. Great way to feel a friday. Thanks, Patrick for the submission!

UPDATED: Not the full set of performers, but the longer version. Thanks Alina!

Salsa Technicals : Solo Precussion in Music

Regardless of whether you understand whats going on (or even how this video of a DVD tries to show you how to perform good perscussion solos) – just listening to the solos are great! For those who dance On1 – , listen very carefully to the music here (because the clave and rhythm is isolated for you to hear). This is really what we (On2) dancers use in the music to dance to. You might say it sounds like cha-cha – well….you are correct, but you dance Cha-Cha On2, and the same instrumental fundamentals of clave apply to Salsa/Mambo. That's why, people who dance salsa on2 can easily dance cha-cha correctly (and vice-versa) because all you are doing is replacing the pause with a cha-cha-cha step. There is no cha-cha On1 – it doesn't make sense because the cha-cha-cha happens on 4-and-5 and 8-and-1 in the music (just listen to it) – meaning your break happens on 2-3 and 6-7… just like in…. Salsa on2 :-).

While the beat is really a cha-cha beat, its still just amazing to listen to – I can literally listen to this beat, rhythm and solo melody of 'guajira ' ALL DAY LONG! You can just feel and groove to it.

I added this next video in the set – more for completeness than for preference. It is more of a 'Tito Puente' style of latin ensemble, where you are mixing more new york jazz melodies with the traditional Cuban sound.

Salsa Technicals : Salsa Sound Effects (and other explosions…)

Now for Anthony's negative side (I know some of you complain..). Regardless, I like watching performances of salsa songs. Its interesting to see the interpretation of music by my favorite dancers with some very good chosen songs. However, there are some performances where they might have great choregraphy, but they use remix various songs (which is not bad) but then they add the inevitable sound-effects of bombs and explosions that seem like it was put together by the Department of Homeland Security. of performances and choreography. Of course this is my opinion. I guess I feel that what they try and do is fit their desired choreography into the music – which then require them to change the salsa music. However, I believe a performance is about choosing the song and interpreting and use the accents ALREADY in the songs for your body movements (no need to add extra). The choregraphy should be created from the song, not the song chosen based on a choreography. Music should be first.

Now, in the following clips, I want to pay attention to the different. One uses sound effects for their accents and the other uses the accents already in the song for the choreography. I just want to make sure you understand – they are both great dancers! (So, send your "Anthony Complaint" mail somewhere else.. haha 🙂 ). If you are wondering where the accents are in the second video – pay attention to the main instruments in the song. 

 

Salsa Technicals : Flirting with the instrument with clean shines…

So, while I was researching the 'My Favorite Things' song from my previous post because I was thinking about using it in a new choreography, I found this video of the salsa girl dancing to it. I really like it (compared to other videos on YouTube using the same song) – this girl understands the song, plays with music. She shows that the best styling and shines come not from complexity but simplicity with the fact of flirting or 'making love' to a specific instrument in the song. Here, again is the "My Favorite Things" song by the New Swing Sextet using the Xylophone for the song, but look at how she plays with what the band gave her with that Xylo. They are some pretty good shines.