Salsa has its roots in Cuba and Puerto Rico. Salsa is also an extremely popular style of music in Central and South America. The word Salsa means "sauce" in Spanish and is used in Latin cuisine as a seasoning and condiment in food. DJ's incorporated the term Salsa into music to excite dancers and spice up the music.
Historians believe Salsa's origins are found in the culture of Afro Cubans in the early 1930's. Cuba Son (better known as Son Cubano), the favored musical style of the era, consists of large bands who incorporate a heavy use of percussion instruments (conga, bongo, tambour), guitar, piano, and violin. In the 1940's the bands expanded their sound and gave birth to mambo and charanga orchestras.
With the massive Latino migration to New York, musicians from Cuba, Puerto Rico, Mexico, and South America gathered to the Big Apple to entertain their fans. They each brought their own brand of music, but as they played together Latino musical fusions emerged, and Salsa is one of them. Music historians believe Salsa was played by Cuban immigrants and Puerto Rican transplants in the clubs of New York City in the 1960's. The Latin music style that, at one point was dominated by Cuban musicians saw a sharp decline following the Cuban revolution. Subsequently, Puerto Rican musicians influenced by Cuban culture came to dominate this musical style.
Typical instruments used in a Salsa band include a piano, conga, trumpet, trombone, claves, cowbell, maracas, double bass, timbales, flute, guitar, bass guitar/cuatro, bongos, saxophone, drum kit, vibraphone, guiro, violin. Salsa bands may include up to twelve musicians including the bandleader, and two or three choral singers. The lyrics are mainly in Spanish, but some songs include a mixture of English and Spanish, and on rare occasions you will find songs entirely in English.
Later, in the 80's, and 90's, Salsa music was modernized by the introduction of the electric guitar, keyboard, and synthesizer, and the music began traveling the world much more easily with less muscians. Salsa quickly expanded to Brazil, Mexico, Argentina, Peru, Columbia, and other Latin countries. Salsa's influence has also reached as far as Africa, Europe and Asia.
Today, Salsa continues to bless the world with different styles, which include the following: Salsa romantica, Salsaton, Salsa erotica, Salsa merengue, and Salsa gorda. Also, Modern styles of music also continue the fusion tradition that is Salsa's foundation. You will find Salsa successfully fused with pop, jazz, rock, R&B.