Music Collections: Celia Cruz, The Queen Of Salsa

About Music Collections Series: One of the things that can help you get to know a dance better is to listen to some songs you can practice your moves to. DJs will most certainly have a few classics as well as some modern pieces at any dance party. Maybe you’ve heard a few good songs but don’t know the name of the artists or title. Perhaps you’re interested in a few suggestions to practice your dancing. Or you could be adding (or building!) a few more titles to your growing music collection.

The aim of Music Collections is to provide a starting point for you to discover musicians (both past and present) and to serve as an inspiration to enjoy the music in dancing. Good music always makes you want to dance more!

As a side note, I will keep it simple and try not to load you with too many boring facts. There’s always Wikipedia if you really need to look up the entire history! No. Instead, apart from recommended titles, I will be giving some general opinions on their musical style and in which dances you might hear the artist’s music.


Who are you covering today?

For today’s entry, I’m covering one of my all time salsa favourites, Celia Cruz.

What’s the deal?

Dubbed as The Queen of Salsa, Celia Cruz’s songs have always been popular in the Latin scene, particularly in the Latino community. Having produced over seventy albums and winning several Grammys under her belt (amongst many more lifetime achievement awards), she has always been one of the most influential female Afro-Cuban singers of her time. What a fantastic woman!

What’s the music like?

Her strong voice, her cheerful lyrics, her charisma, her stage presence, those colourful outfits…where can I start? Everything is a bundle of joy when Celia is played, particularly when you listen to La Vida Es Un Carnaval  (Life is a Carnival) – your life suddenly indeed becomes a carnival at that very moment! Even if you don’t understand Spanish, you’re bound to want to get up and start dancing before she bellows her trademark ¡Azúcar! (Sugar!) at the beginning. Sudden sugar rush energy indeed!

Why should I add this to my collection?

Drawing inspiration from her Cuban roots, Celia’s music practically defines what Salsa music is. Using mainly Latin percussion to orchestrate the rhythms and an all time party favourite to get everybody moving, who hasn’t heard of Celia Cruz before? She is the 20th century Latin music equivalent of Mozart. There is absolutely no way you can go to a Salsa party and not hear at least one Celia Cruz song at least once. Definitely a recommended must have to add to your collection.

Recommended Listening

Apart from Salsa, Celia Cruz also has a good number of Cha Cha songs to her name.

La Vida Es Un Carnaval
La Negra Tiene Tumbao
Ritmo En El Corazon

Cha Cha
Rie Y Llora
Oye Como Va

Buy the music:
Buy Celia Cruz on iTunes
Buy Celia Cruz on Amazon

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  1. Pingback: Music Collections: Croma Latina, The (Italian) Latin Band - Amantis Creations

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