Merengue

One of the Most Popular Latino Genres in Latin America

Merengue

The name "Merengue" , comes from the style of music (and the word too) of Haitian mereng. Merengue is sung and danced to in the Dominican Republic, where it was from. It is also danced to in the United States and other Latin American countries as well. The people who are associated with Merengue is Dominicans and other Latin Americans.

History and Origination

Merengue dance originated from Haitian mereng, or can also be called Meringue. It can also trace its roots to African music. It is also said that it originated from the slaves working in sugar beet fields, who created it. Merengue music came to popularity when Rafael Trujillo named it as the official music of the Dominican Republic, and used it to praise himself.

Characteristics of the Music

Merengue is one of the most popular music genres in Latin America, and one of the most popular latino music genres in the United States. The main instruments used in merengue are the accordion, sax, güira, tambour, sometimes congas, and the bass guitar. It is commonly associated with dance clubs and radios. It does not have a special costume. Famous Merengue artists of today include Elvis Crespo, Fernando Villalona, and Juan Luis Guerra.

Connection to Dance

Merengue is associated to its own dance form, which is the same name. The characteristics of the dance are the leader holds the follower's waist with the leader's right hand, while holding the follower's right hand with the leader's left hand at the follower's eye level.

Merengue Today

Merengue has become one of the most popular latino music genres in all of Latin America. It is regularly heard on latino radio stations in N.Y.C. New types of Merengue have risen such as it being infused with reggaeton. Merengue de orquesta is the most popular form currently. Merengue de orquesta is different because it uses a larger set of instruments and backup singers. Women are now very common in Merengue compared to older merengue, which was dominantly male. The future of Merengue is said to become even more infused with other popular latino genres such as reggaeton
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