Unit 4: Salsa with Gino
Melody now takes us on a journey from the Trustees Theater to Charleston, South Carolina to meet our next artist, Gino. Use SG29–31 to meet Gino and prepare your students to learn about salsa.
Salsa is the name given to Afro-Cuban dance music as it is played in the United States. The Spanish word salsa means “sauce” and was used in Cuba as an exclamation (“Salsa!”) when something exciting was played in music. Though the music originated in Cuba, the infusion of jazz harmony, arranging techniques, and improvisation, as well as the influence of the Puerto Rican community in America, came together to give salsa its distinct sabor (or “flavor”). Salsa rose to prominence in Cuban and Puerto Rican communities in the United States beginning in the 1950s, and today is still one of the most popular genres of Latin American music around the world.
- Celia: My Life/Celia: Mi Vida by Celia Cruz with Ana Maria Reymundo
- Faces of Salsa: A Spoken History of the Music by Leonardo Padura Fuentes
- The Mambo Kings Play Songs of Love by Oscar Hijuelos
Listening & Viewing:
- Willie Colón and Rubén Blades, Siembra (Fania Records)
- Celia Cruz & Johnny Pacheco, Celia y Johnny (Fania Records)
- Fania All-Stars, Live at the Cheetah, Vol. 1 (Fania Records)
- Héctor Lavoe, La Voz (Fania Records)
- Eddie Palmieri, Vamanos pa’l Monte (Tico)
- Tito Puente, Dance Mania (RCA)
- Sesame Street has had guest appearances by salsa artists Tito Puente and Celia Cruz, and even aired an episode where Elmo prepares for a salsa party by learning to salsa (Episode 3917).
Additional Teaching Resources:
- Georgia Public Broadcasting: Teach Young Children Spanish with Salsa!
- “Teaching with Freddie the Frog: Salsa Steps for Kids” and “The Salsa Kids Slide” are good introductory videos for kids to learn salsa dancing.
- Pete Nater’s Salsa Legends and Masters Academy is a resource for trivia and history about salsa.
SG29 ↓ Download File
SG30 ↓ Download File
SG31 ↓ Download File