Imagine the Queen was visiting your town.
Even if you didn’t read the newspapers, you would know.
You would know because the shops would dress their windows differently, people would put flags up and flowers everywhere.
The nearer it got to the visit, the more obvious the signs would be.
On the day there would be red carpet everywhere she was going.
More security, trumpet fanfares, VIPs.
You wouldn’t need anyone to tell you something different or important was happening – you could work it out.
It’s the same in Salsa music.
When things happen in Salsa songs that are deemed important by the musicians, you can hear them because they are “landmarked”.
Musicians mark important events a number of ways.
They do “more” of a thing – play louder and faster.
More instruments come into play.
They do less of a thing – some of the instruments stop to highlight others.
These are often known as breaks.
The “somethings” may be small – an accent – a flash of trumpet for example, to mark the end of a phrase or a transition from one part of the song to the next.
If the musical event is deemed more important, the “something” will be bigger to reflect that.
As a song progresses, you may feel the energy and excitement and tension progressively increasing.
When it reaches its peak, there is a release.
This release is marked with a “really big something”.
Generally, the size of the something has to equal the size of the build up – otherwise there’s no resolution.
And this is just as frustrating in music and dance as it is in sex…a big build up with an unsatisfying climax leaves listeners and dancers unfulfilled and unhappy!
Contrary to what many novice dancers believe, you don’t need to know the song well in order to predict when one of these important “somethings” is going to happen.
When you listen to a lot of Salsa music, your brain recognises many of the underlying patterns on a subconscious level.
However, matching these “somethings” with an appropriate dance movement in the moment requires practice and prediction on a CONSCIOUS level.
You can’t pull rabbits out of hats when the rabbit wasn’t there in the first place…
That’s why working on musicality has to be done with intent and awareness, and mostly off the dance floor.
Find out how to practice your “somethings” by coming along to my next workshop: