Silence or lack of leadership in salsa dancing community?

#81
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With this in mind, how can we expect the average dancer to have a clear picture of the history of salsa as there simply is no such picture and no consensus over where it comes from. Look at all the discussions we've had on it.
Another excellent post on this subject, I agree with all of your points except the above. I do believe there is a clear picture of the history/roots of salsa. Frankly I am somewhat surprised that there is still doubt and controversy about its origins. Cuba, New York and Puerto Rico being ground zero, for the growth, implementation and development of this genre that we so love.
 
#82
Another excellent post on this subject, I agree with all of your points except the above. I do believe there is a clear picture of the history/roots of salsa. Frankly I am somewhat surprised that there is still doubt and controversy about its origins. Cuba, New York and Puerto Rico being ground zero, for the growth, implementation and development of this genre that we so love.
Once you start digging deeper, the clear picture dissappears.
 
#83
With this in mind, how can we expect the average dancer to have a clear picture of the history of salsa as there simply is no such picture and no consensus over where it comes from.

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The average dancer, I will admit, has little or no interest in origins ( and lots of techn. ) however , I think the roots of origin are pretty clearly defined.
Many will accept that Mambo transitioned musically and dance wise in the very late 60s to the larger expansion in the 70s.

If anyone knows the variations in old school Mambo, it becomes fairly obvious that the majority of foundation work ( and several advanced steps ) is identical in salsa . That conclusion will give a pathway to salsa's antecedents .

I'm in a somewhat unique position having lived thru the "changes " in the genre ( and fighting them in the past ! ) and in summary; those who are entrenched in the genre (teachers for one ex ) have somewhat of a duty to educate their students to some degree , on the roots of the genre ..and for that there are sources.
 
#88
The average dancer, I will admit, has little or no interest in origins ( and lots of techn. ) however , I think the roots of origin are pretty clearly defined.
I asked this in another tread (why teachers do what they do). it seems to me teachers cover this topic to look more knowlegable and give validation to students.
 
#89
There isn't much leadership in the salsa scene because (I think) we don't need one, nor do we want one. (A very loose "we" here since this is all my thoughts)

Salsa dancing is, at the end of the day, just a dance. Sure there there is a lot of history and culture behind it, but many people do it because it's fun (at least to begin with.) If you put any form of leadership into it, some people (not necessarily the leaders themselves) will start pointing fingers at people, telling others that they are dancing wrong because they don't dance like the leader figures.

Example: people make Johnny Vasquez the leader of on1 salsa. Does that mean anyone not dancing the glamorous LA style is dancing wrong? Should we hunt down everyone who prefers a smoother style?

The point I am trying to make is that we as a community will never be able to agree on who is/are the leader(s) of the dance. Salsa is such a broad term for so many different styles of dancing you cannot appoint a leader for every style. You can have a group of like-minded people discussing an aspect of the dance (e.g. the roots of salsa) and there will always be people who will see your conclusion as a steaming pile. I am part of the salsa dancing society at my university, and couple weeks back a Colombian student saw us dancing (we dance and teach on1), and he straight up told us that "that's not real salsa." You can never please everyone, and any attempt to establish leadership in the salsa community would only do more harm than good.
 
#90
. I am part of the salsa dancing society at my university, and couple weeks back a Colombian student saw us dancing (we dance and teach on1), and he straight up told us that "that's not real salsa." You can never please everyone, and any attempt to establish leadership in the salsa community would only do more harm than good.
Ahh yes therein lies the problem, everyone has their idea of what "real" salsa is. SF is rife with people with their take on what "real" salsa is. I find it kinda ironic that you're being castigated by a Colombian as to what real salsa is....had he been Cuban, or from New York or Puerto Rico...different story( :DI jest). In defence of the OP (offbeat). He did narrow it down to the linear On2/mambo/salsa community, on why doesn't someone speak out about the over reliance on turn patterns? To my mind I already have leaders, people like Eddie Torres, Franklin Diaz, Frankie Martinez, Tomas Guerrero, Jimmy Yoon. to name a few, people whom I think are still relevant with regard to dancing on2, whom as far as I know always stress FUNDAMENTALS, over injudicious use of turn patterns. Are lots of people listening to them?...the answer would seem to be no. There is a reason why Terry Taulliat is the most popular social dancer...turn patterns, it also helps that he's very musical and a phenomenal dancer.
 
#91
people like Eddie Torres, Franklin Diaz, Frankie Martinez, Tomas Guerrero, Jimmy Yoon.
I have to say that is quite a sophisticated list of on2 dancers that everyone should respect, and covers various styles - smooth like Frankie and Franklin, elegant/classical like ET, Tomas with his famous Santo Rico spin technique. I have never heard of Jimmy until now, and even though he does emphasise on fundamentals in the Youtube videos I can find, his use of syncopation of “and 1” does not seem natural at all to me. It could just be his style, but if I am to dance with his students I would probably think that they are not dancing right; similarly his students might have a difficult time leading someone that wasn’t taught by Jimmy because of that seemingly out of time step.

Every dancer would (and should) eventually develop their own style and flavour of dancing, and as long as the fundamental technique stands there is no right or wrong way to dance. That is (to me) what makes salsa so interesting. If anyone wants to centralise the technique/ styling down to every single finger then they should switch to ballroom salsa.

That of course isn’t what OP is talking about, but discussions of topics and ideas surrounding the salsa community does exist, most notably the Olu Olu coffee lounge in various congresses and festivals, featuring many big names and their opinions on different issues. You also have Facebook posts proposing a problem/question, but that tends to end in heated arguments, broken friendships and a more segregated community. Hell I even talk with my local teachers sometimes, ranging from techniques, length of congress workshops, performance vs social dancing, etc.

We don’t need any leadership on opinions; what we need is respect for others’ opinions, humility to listen to others, and enjoy dancing.
 

vit

Son Montuno
#92
I have never heard of Jimmy until now, and even though he does emphasise on fundamentals in the Youtube videos I can find, his use of syncopation of “and 1” does not seem natural at all to me.
Well ... it can be a kind of "natural" ... when one doesn't have steady timing of the body and steps or the timing of the leader and follower is somewhat different, you will see a lot of "& something steps" (something = 1, 2, 3, or 4) even if not taught. Quite frequent here in Europe (depending on the venue of course) :(
 

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