If you’ve spent much time in the world of bachata, you will have come across the name DJ Tronky. He has become famous worldwide for his skill in remixing popular music to become bachata songs that people can dance bachata to. Check out this video of Leo and Jomante dancing to his remix of Lonely by Justin Bieber and Benny Blanco to get a feel for what his style is all about.
Why remix music for bachata?
Bachata dancing and bachata music go hand in hand, and you can only really dance bachata to the right music. Bachata music has a very distinct rhythm that doesn’t often occur naturally in songs that haven’t specifically been designed to be bachata songs, so it can be difficult to dance bachata to anything other than traditional music. Unless someone like DJ Tronky comes along and produces some remixes for you!
What is the bachata beat?
Overall, bachata music has a 4/4 beat. If a popular song is in 3/4, it is possible to convert it to 4/4 a lot of the time (but not always!). On top of the 4/4 beat, bachata music has three distinct patterns (known as “polyrhythms”) that are connected to different parts of the song. The derecho is usually the rhythm for the verse, the majao for the chorus, and the mambo for the bridges.
To remix a song and make it bachata, these polyrhythms need to be played on top and synced with the original song. This is both a technical and creative process and it requires a great amount of skill to be able to overlay these percussions without making the remix sound odd or unnatural.
DJ Tronky has become famous partly because he is great at picking popular songs that will capture people’s imaginations and partly because he knows which songs will work and which won’t and he is able to sync the bachata rhythm with the original seamlessly.
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