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Salsa: Latin Pop Music In The Cities (1988)
Starring: Ruben Blades, Celia Cruz, Tito Puente
Director: Jeremy Marre
Category: Music
Studio: Shanachie
60 mins



Beats Of The Heart

Salsa refers not only to hot sauce but hot music -- the exuberant dance music of Latino communities in New York and other cities in the Eastern U.S. as well as Puerto Rico and Cuba. Over the past 25 years, Salsa has profoundly influenced jazz and pop music while giving a focal point for a colorful, distinctively Latin way of walking, talking and dancing. From the barrios of New York City to the roots culture of The Caribbean, Salsa captures Latin music in all its joy, vitality and improvisational brilliance. Celia Cruz is shown in rehearsal, Charlie Palmieri instructs a class of children in the seminal Latin rhythms -- bomba, mambo, rhumba, etc. Tito Puents plays music at a wedding in the Latin community. Ruben Blades demonstrates the ways politics and music can work together. The drumming and singing of Santeria followers shows the influence of African culture, and a trip to Puerto Rico establishes the roots of mainland Latin culture. Through it all, the rhythms and melodies of salsa provide a vital soundtrack for the emergence of an entire people.