Conga Player Genre

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Conga Player Genre

Postby Kaban » Sat Oct 19, 2013 4:18 am

Greetings People,

What are the different genres of conga players? There are conga players that do rumba, are they folk, or just rumberos? Is a traditional congero mean that he plays Afro-Cuban dance music? What about congeros who play funk, popular, and rock...are they called pop conga players?

My son told me three years ago, he is now 16, that he likes House Music; I asked him what kind? He looked at me puzzled, when I started naming the different genres of House (the Music Corporations took it and called it Electronic Music); Deep, Old School, Funky, Chicago, Drum and Bass, and now his generation has Dub-step. All of it is House, but different enough where each genre has its own stars and following.

So what are the different branches of the congero? What do you consider yourself and why?
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Re: Conga Player Genre

Postby JohnnyConga » Sat Oct 19, 2013 4:32 pm

I consider my self a 'multi-percussionist' that plays congas/bongos/timbales etc...there aren't any real 'titles' for those that play outside of the Latin musical genres..you have Salseros, Rumberos, Folklorists,Ethnomusicologists, when i was involved with the Disco scene i wasnt considered a "disco conguero"....there is no term...
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Re: Conga Player Genre

Postby Kaban » Sun Oct 20, 2013 5:06 am

Thanks JC, now what about the rest of you guys...even the beginners. What do you consider yourself, and Why?
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Re: Conga Player Genre

Postby RitmoBoricua » Mon Oct 21, 2013 11:27 am

A well rounded "conguero, tumbador or conga player" not "congero"
should be able to play numerous rhythms. To me regardless of what
rhythm or music you play if you play congas you are a conga player.
A good example of this is Giovanni Hidalgo I have seen him play congas
in just about all genres or styles at a very high level and I would not refer
to him as a bomba, rumba, jazz, rock, this kind or that kind of music player
etc, to me he is just a conga player and a very good one at that.I recognize
that there are conga players that specialized solely in one or two styles and
we tend to label them within the style they play. My point is do not get labeled
as just one or two styles player if you are trying to make living playing congas
the more rhythms and styles you play the more opportunities you have to stay
employed. To me if they are going to put a label on me better be something like
"a solid, well rounded conga player that knows his rhythms".
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Re: Conga Player Genre

Postby Kaban » Tue Oct 22, 2013 9:09 pm

Hey RitmoBoricua, thank you for contributing. I agree with you for the most part, and I see your valid point about not limiting yourself. Yes Giovanni has amazing technical skills, but it doesn't make him the best in Latin, Rock, Rumbas, Jazz, and Pop. Nothing is worse then one I go to see a rock band, and there is a conga player forcing latin rhythms into the songs. It's about the music, and adding musically to it; not superimposing a circle into a square hole.

My favorites:

Rock: Michael Carabello

Jazz: Mongo, Ralph MacDonald

Salsa: Ray Barretto

Disco: Johnny Conga

Teacher: Johnny Conga, Michal De Miranda

Timba: Tomas Cruz

What is yours?



.
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Re: Conga Player Genre

Postby JohnnyConga » Wed Oct 23, 2013 12:05 am

hahahahaha oh noooooooooooo not Disco!!!..hahahaha..hey it was what it was...hahaha
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Re: Conga Player Genre

Postby Kaban » Wed Oct 23, 2013 5:16 am

:wink:
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Re: Conga Player Genre

Postby RitmoBoricua » Wed Oct 23, 2013 10:03 am

Kaban wrote:Yes Giovanni has amazing technical skills, but it doesn't make him the best in Latin, Rock, Rumbas, Jazz, and Pop.


Never said or meant to say that Giovanni was the best. I used Giovanni as an example
of a well rounded conga player that can play just about any rhythm or style of music and
do it at a very high level. Is not only about his amazing technical skills also is about Gio's
understanding and mastery of the fundamentals.
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Re: Conga Player Genre

Postby JohnnyConga » Wed Oct 23, 2013 3:13 pm

I totally agree RB...
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Re: Conga Player Genre

Postby Kaban » Fri Oct 25, 2013 6:07 am

Thanks for clearing that up RB; can you go into detail about the difference between technical skill and fundamentals?

Thanks
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Re: Conga Player Genre

Postby RitmoBoricua » Fri Oct 25, 2013 5:17 pm

For instance a fundamental to me is to know how to play the tumbao pattern properly.
Knowing what you suppose to do with each hand and how the pattern works in relation
to the clave. Technical skills I am assuming you mean technique, for instance that you
are not lifting your arms way up high and using your shoulders to hit the drum head in
a hard and wild manner, you know that does not look like you are fighting your drum
when you are playing. Just two examples like they say “the river is deep”.

Fundamentals - forming a necessary base or core; of central importance.

Technique - The way in which the fundamentals, as of an artistic work, are handled.
Skill or command in handling such fundamentals.


So according to those (2) definitions above fundamentals are of central importance
and that's why I said what I said about Gio's mastery of fundamentals.
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Re: Conga Player Genre

Postby Kaban » Fri Oct 25, 2013 6:07 pm

Nicely put, thank you.

There should be more knowledge like that brought to light.
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Re: Conga Player Genre

Postby RitmoBoricua » Fri Oct 25, 2013 9:28 pm

I know JC has commented on these subjects and others as well
on this forum. The rumba threads on this forum for the most
part are vivid examples of how important the fundamentals
really are. Them threads talk lot about how important is
to play in clave and how the players and singers interact,
sometimes you read that somebody was playing "cruzao" and
how quick that person gets replaced because it was throwing-off
the other players. There are plenty of info on this forum about
these subjects. So much to learn so little time, I will be a
student of the drum and rhythms until the day I die.
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Re: Conga Player Genre

Postby KidCuba » Sat Oct 26, 2013 3:25 pm

My time is limited and my interest focused.

I love to listen to all sorts of music, but I am a student of rumba. I will never be the well-rounded musician many are as it relates to el tambor.
Triple Pulse Conga Practice- http://www.larumbero.com
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Re: Conga Player Genre

Postby Kaban » Sun Oct 27, 2013 4:40 am

KidCuba,

I respect someone who follows his own path, that's great that you found your passion.
I want and I am working on building solid fundamentals and technique. Why? I like the conga drums, I like the sound they make, it relaxes me, playing correctly takes work, it's a physical instrument, I like the history of it, I like the challenge, I like the different congas there are, the different skins. In short, I like it, I want to be good.

As for being well rounded in the different genres, it's not for me. I'll listen to all kinds of music, but I only love a handful. The music that moves me the most, is the music that was playing in the streets that I grew up as a kid, House! I love playing along to old school house with my drums...ahh, the good life.
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