History of Salsa

Battersea Spanish

History of Salsa

Salsa is a dance and musical style widely known for its sensual, catchy and vibrant rhythms, inspired by the Mambo, Cha-cha-cha, Rumba, Son Cubano and so on. Salsa is an enjoyable dance to learn, quite easy to pick up and is a great way to stay in shape. If you’ve ever thought about taking up your dancing shoes, we at Battersea Spanish offer numerous Latin dance classes, including Salsa Classes all aimed to grow your dance skills in a fun and authentic environment!

Salsa is a dance deeply rooted throughout Cuba, the Carribean and Africa. All of these new and exciting musical rhythms, styles and musical techniques came together in Cuba, creating the foundations of the salsa music and dance we are familiar with today. 

The expansion of salsa from Cuba and the Caribean to America strengthened its popularity as a dance and music style. After the Cuban war in 1898, Americans became aware of the new style of music. American jazz musicians who visited Cuba then started to incorporate Salsa’s latin elements into their performances, popularising Salsa. Similarly, musicians from Cuba, Mexico and Puerto Rico all came to New York to perform bringing their own native music and rhythms with them. By 1909, Cuban and South American musicians recorded their own music, which spread to North America where the name “Salsa” was founded and coined.

Fania Records, a record label company, further propelled Salsa deeper into the heart of the music industry. The label contributed greatly to the salsa scene producing many of the Salsa hits and Salsa legends such as Celia Cruz, Willie Colon, Fania All Stars and Reuben Blades in the 1970s.

As the music and dance spread around the United States, different areas created their own Salsa dance style. For example, the Salsa style in Miami focuses on legwork/footwork and is influenced by Cuban culture as Cuban immigrants settled in Miami, whereas the New York salsa style is danced in a straight line with influences from Jazz and Afro Cuban culture.

Nowadays, Salsa is still vastly popular in Latin America, along with many Latin communities in the United States. The dance and music style has gained popularity across seas to Europe and even Asia, spurring on Salsa festivals and worldwide Salsa dance competitions. 

We hope we have inspired you to try out Salsa for yourselves. Allow your body to relax and let it dance to the music at our Salsa Classes in London. Or learn the Salsa language yourself with our Beginner Spanish Lessons!

Feel free to give us a call on 02 030 957 382 or drop us an email at hola@batterseaspanish.com.