Flamenco Jazz: A Blend of Culture
Every country has a vast and rich form of art in their culture, one of which is music. Music is found in every society may it be in the past or present and is composed of different elements that make it more even rich. One common element of music is rhythm, and rhythm is best portrayed thru its corresponding dance form. As such, music and dance in every culture were created and performed together to develop a wide array of dance/music forms within different ages. Since the Renaissance period that is characterized with rebirth in learning, science and the arts, music also thrived and was improvised to give birth to different dance and music forms.
The significance of music and its creation, appreciation and even definition vary across a diverse background of numerous cultures and social context. Because of that, every country from different parts of the globe had established a variety of musical tradition in their culture. And if you are talking about a music form that is notably characterized with amazing grace and power, Flamenco is that music style. Flamenco is a genuine Southern Spanish art which, obviously, takes its roots from Spain. It exists in three forms: the song or cante, the dance or baile, and guitar playing or guitarra. The flamenco culture can be traced back from Andalusia, Spain and had become an icon to the Spanish culture.
The Flamenco Dance Style
Flamenco is an expressive form of dance. It involves a series of quick steps and stomps combined with a sharp head, arm and upper body movements. The dancers always strive to express their emotions thru the dance movement. The common depiction of the flamenco is dancer with a layered skirt and lace with ruffles or frills for female flamenco dancers and men can wear a suit or pants and a shirt. Modern day dancers are more likely to wear dresses that show their bare chest.
Thru sharing music between cultures, experiments and fusion of different music forms, it is inevitable for a music form not to be tainted and influenced by other music forms and modern day flamenco is a good example of that fact. Over a decade, it has been quite noticeable how Latin jazz had lifted the once no-music-only-clapping flamenco into a more harmonic and melodic level thru the use of various instruments like the flamenco guitar, the classical Spanish Guitar, cajon, palillos and palmas.
The use of instruments to create various blending sounds made their mark into what is now called the “Flamenco Jazz”.
Breaking national barriers, jazz and flamenco has given rise to the creation of unique blending of sounds. Musicians had learned to navigate both of these music forms’ worlds and integrate each other’s rhythm to establish the flamenco in a whole new level in today’s global culture setting.
Flamenco Jazz falls into an “easy listening category” wherein the integration of diverse sources is exhibited. The collaboration of these two music forms reminds us how tradition and contemporary art can be blended to make bold images of both traditions.