Racial identity is a fundamental aspect of any individual because it helps them to know their culture and heritage. The contemporary world presents various cultural aspects with a close relation to the origin of different individuals. Music is one of the vital aspects which define the origin or racial combination of an individual. Consequently, finding one's musical heritage is essential because it helps them to determine their origin and cultural interactions. Specifically, I am a multiracial individual who is black, Dominican, Caucasian and West Indies. As such, this retrospect project report will focus on Dominican musical heritage as my cultural music with a clear analysis of the type of music played, the uniqueness of the sound, the instruments used, the pictures and audio examples.
The Dominican Music
The cultural heritage of the Dominican people has an origin which consists of predominately European cultural basis (Brad, 2016). Simply put, these people are greatly influenced by both African and Tainan cultures. Musically, the Dominican culture is known for the production of multiple musical styles and genres. However, Merengue- rhythm and blues music is the most known lively music played in this culture. Merengue is a fast-paced rhythm and dance music with a tempo of about 120 to 160 beats per minute (Brad, 2016). This rhythmic and blues music is highly celebrated in this culture because it is used in different dances.
The Uniqueness of the Dominican Rhythmic and Blues Music Sound
The rhythmic merengue Dominican music sound is unique because of its beats. This type of music produces 160 beats per minute depending on the type of musical elements used. For instance, when using the tradition African drum, the beats are always 160 per minute (Brad, 2016). The sound of the music typically represents an affectionate feeling towards a partner especially after suffering in battles or war of independence. It signifies the love to those who have struggled in a certain past event. The African drum, on the other hand, it used as a sign to represent the efforts made by Torres at the station during the Battle of Talanquera in the War of Indigence to fight for the people he loved (Brad, 2016).
The Instruments used in the Dominican Rhythmic and Blues Music
As aforementioned, the African drum is used to fasten the beats in the music. The drum is as shown below.
Additionally, an accordion is the traditionally used musical element during this music (Jean, Francois & Peter, 2015). The accordion is used to bring a romantic atmosphere during the time of romance in the music. This instrument is played by a specialist who knows how to accurately play it. It is as shown in the picture bellow.
Lastly, the piano is another instrument used. It appears as shown below.
The Dominican music uses two basic audio samples. The first sample is the Query by Humming (QbH) audio sample. In this sample, the blue rhythmic music uses a specific melody which the singer uses to retrieve subsequent melodies (Jean, Francois & Peter, 2015). The other audio sample is the Query by Rhythm or Query by Timbre (Jean, Francois & Peter, 2015). In this sample the singer uses a jazz technic and mimics the sounds so as to come up with the best Dominican audio rhythmic and blues music.
Brad, F. (2016). American Rhythm and Blues Influence on Early Jamaican Musical Style [online] Available at: <https://debate.uvm.edu/dreadlibrary/fredericks.html>Retrieved on 1st September 2016
Jean, J., A., Francois, P. &Peter, H.(2015). From Sound Sampling To Song Sampling. IEEE Workshop on Applications of Signal Processing to Audio and Acoustics. Mohonk, New Paltz, NY.
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