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June 13, 2008

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Geko Jones

Great post Carolina. I just wanted to mention for those that don't know that Perico Ripiao was a music born and raised in brothels. At its earliest encarnatons it was whorehouse music full up of double entendre and the later re-branding as merengue tipico was an attempt to cast off some of the negatives associated with Perico ripiao. There's a hilarious movie by the same name in 10 parts on youtube you can watch here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0cTfwvpVYbs

Caro

Hi Geko, thanks for dropping by. You won't remember, but we met briefly at one of the Glasslands gigs, through Rupture.

The funny thing is, from its origins merengue was supposed to be disreputable, accused of prompting licentious behavior (people dancing so close, oh my!)

Thanks for the tip on the video, will check it out!

Kiko Jones

From what I understand, the perico ripiao's main instrument was originally the guitar. I don't know when/how it was supplanted by the accordion, but many musicians and musicologists bemoan this development, as the guitar is a much more harmonically complex and rhythmically visceral instrument.

A great example of guitar-based perico ripiao is the music of Eladio Romero Santos, the late guitarist/vocalist who is considered a pioneer of the genre. (He also recorded bachata, as well.)
There's an album of his--its title I can't recall--with the Dominican coat of arms set against a white background that I remember as being just stellar. This page has some basic info on ERS and music clips: http://www.iasorecords.com/index.cfm?subsecid=118

I've had the pleasure of meeting the polite, soft-spoken and painfully shy Mr. Garcia, for he is not only a client of my trusty bassist, Dr. War, but if I'm not mistaken, my brother and fellow songwriter, "El Metal"--who introduced me to Krency--has a song on El Prodigio's next album.

Btw, who is this Geko person?

Caro

Thanks Kiko.

Eladio is on Bachata Roja, one of my fave records from last year. And yeah, I dig guitar merengues, but I think what the accordion may have taken away melodically, it added rhythmically. The guitar as it was used there could not do the intense "ataque" that accordions do.

Geko may be your younger brother by another father (your names are too similar), a local DJ with very good taste. ;-)

Kiko Jones

* - "Eladio is on Bachata Roja, one of my fave records from last year."

Is it a posthumous release? I was under the impression ERS died a few years ago...

* - "And yeah, I dig guitar merengues, but I think what the accordion may have taken away melodically, it added rhythmically."

Sorry, but I gotta disagree. By definition alone, the accordion falls short of the guitar's rhythmic capabilities. (As for this particular kind of music, see answer below.)

* - "The guitar as it was used there could not do the intense 'ataque' that accordions do."

Maybe not ERS' approach to the instrument, but a fierce six-stringer like, say, Luis "Terror" Dias would surely make you forget the accordion in no time.

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I've been dying to see this guy live, but he only seems to play Monday nights in the middle of the Bronx or at 3 am in Bushwick.

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Hey ... I had to stop at this site to say that this incredibly informed about one of the sweetest instruments and subtlety of the music as the guitar, just amazing, thanks for improving my life with this information, because as they say around ... . never stop learning to play guitar.

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¡A la lucha!

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