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Ahí Ahí


The source of Dominican Bachata classes of my local teacher comes to visit



What does Wibi do differently compared to myself
controlling even an large 8 ft softboard in those small waves in el Palmar?

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The sting in everyone´s neck


Improve music and dancing
to improve the love for it
and for each other


A spontaneous trip to Croatia with the night train.

Dance energies


The spark

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Not a teacher but still teaching...? Quote:
"I didn't know for years that you can also dance Bachata, not just listen to it!"

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Constructive Interference


Monster Wave


Summer Sensual Days in Rovinj Monday 5:08 am

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Leavin` the dream


First master it simple & clean with minimum ingredients

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Dancing with music vs dancing to music

Listen, love, live


An abstraction of music: music sheets

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Salsa dance figures


Endless possibilities


Pure Joy, just kiddin´ :P

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Different schematic types of learning curves towards the
ideal social dance level / healthiest dance intensity


Light is light, combine all colours and its all white

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Leaders in musicality classes


Performing might be in their genes


Musical Yield (y) [%] of a Song (combined with a Performer) vs composition level regarding dancing (x) [-]

Here we are

with over 20 years of evolution and transformation in Bachata music and dancing.

Time for a recap

based on my own personal experiences

over the last 10 years.


I The past


In April 2013, I visited my first Bachata Festival in Stuttgart; one of the countless festivals that I was about to visit.

Apart from classical Dominican or "Salsa-inspired" Fusion/Moderna classes, the strongest memory of that festival is a "Bachata Sensual class", something quite fancy back then.

You know, this very dance which feels like you can't get hold of a slippery fish that evades your grasp all the time.

If you expect me to tell you of how hyped I was, I will stop you right there and reality will keep up with you.

The majority of dance couples did not want to change their partner - just like in any common Central European Ballroom & Latin dance school, they came with their partner and also left with them. At least for the dance classes.

"Social" dance? Negative.

Several surplus leaders without a partner were there to practice (remember: we are talking about a dance festival where, normally, there is a rather vast surplus of women), the dance teachers were seemingly overburdened with this uncommon situation and simply started their teaching routine.


Imagine practicing your entire first professional "sensual class" on your own

like capoeira;

worthy of a pathetic tear, I'd say

- not to say: "what a true traditional Bachatero experience!"

¡ay Dios mío!

The same experience of pity offered the next class with another teacher couple

where the teacher was literally begging some people to share their partner so that everyone can learn.

In the end, nobody shared and both teachers danced with the two remaining male leaders during the whole class.

As frustrating as it seemed,

the first leader found his future wife on this very festival,

the second leader is me.


Why would you continue with such experiences and not leave it at that?

Typically, when people fail at something, they give up quite early and imagine that

this specific topic "is not made for them" / "they are not made for it".

When I fail at something that I like,

I am even more intrigued by what caused me to fail where others succeed.

Thus, there was no way around

diving deeper in something which arose to be one of my favorite dance styles

for more than a decade.


As I delved further into the dance styles and into the music,

I felt that more and more people started to enjoy Bachata

and lots of DJs started making Bachata Remixes.

However, most of them greatly lacked the skills of "proper" music.

Improvised, half-digested Remixes that, for a musician, are uneasy to listen to.

In earlier days before the internet, one would keep these experiments closed behind locked doors

and only a few influential experts decided who/which song was "worthy" of being multiplied.

However, in the century of the internet, everything gets shared and published immediately

- irrespectively of quality.

Most dancers, however, would not even hear it nor react to these errors in the matrix.

Very few DJs respected simple rules of Bachata musical composition

(most probably because they did not know about them in the first place, me included at first)

and even fewer could produce Remixes that were artistically appealing,

Remixes that could actually be interpreted on the dancefloor (or in a choreography) except for the singing voice.

Everybody was so hyped about putting some Bachata instruments over the latest Pop hits to dance to it

where in the end,

endangering themselves to completely lose focus.

I made up my mind and shared my ideas and (rather strong) opinions about Bachata music and the Bachata dance scene

- especially with this homepage.

A lot of criticism can be found in those words that may have displeased lots,

which, for them, is damaging the "scene", their reputation and in the end their business model.

Still, it is important to give one a mirror , dig deep and asking oneself

if one could lose the idea of a proposed red thread;

especially coming from one who can afford it to speak freely and independently, towards the goal

to make Bachata

(not themselves)

even greater.

To what end?

Not for the sake of creating an Bachata monster

that devours all other dance styles completely,

but to increase joy.

To let more people enjoy Bachata in an even more intense way.

To let people learn how to love Bachata.


My goal was not to condemn Bachata Remixes as a type of music.

My goal was to sensitize Remix DJs to

what quality music should sound like

to have a chance to become great

or even just to even with other dance scenes like Kizomba

where (in my opinion) "proper" Remixes

are way easier to handle (e.g. simply with predefined rhythms and effects

which do not counteract most electronic music

in contrast to more complicated instrumental music like Bachata).

My goal was not to recommend banning Bachata Remixes from parties.

My goal was to sensitize DJs to enjoy thoroughly composed music of Bachata artists themselves,

probably the very reason why they became Bachata Remixers

and not Remix DJs of any other style of music:

there is much greatness already to listen to and to play on a party.


My goal was not to simply rant about people who enjoy dancing to Bachata music in any way they please.

My goal was to start thoughts in teacher's and dancer's minds about

what Bachata

evolved (dance-wise) as little sister of Salsa,

now becoming an independent mature dance scene

as a type of couple dance

could represent

especially compared to other couple dances Salsa/Zouk/Kizomba/Tango/Swing/...

and especially for people who love Bachata music.

It seems like some people who also love this type of music

read very carefully

and still think about how to progress the dance scene

- focussing on musicality, the very potential strength of this dance style-

against all the worldly necessities

of gaining money, fame, attraction, media presence,

inspiring next generation offspring

and so on.



some try to drop the true Bachatero,

some try to teach you musical vertigos,

some try to span up hell to heaven.

After sharing my thoughts online and offline seveal years ago,

I rarely danced on festivals due to the very few songs of DJ`s mixes that I could enjoy and interpret.

The chance of listening to two or three "good" songs (in my definition) in a row was very slim.

In a surfer's slang, I'd say: the few sets of surfable waves were quite rare, small and mushy.

So, there was little chance to get into a flow that would haul out the most enjoyable dances.

With hopes almost lost

to experience some valuable party on any festival for me,

I was about to find other spots of Europe to explore

where a night train could take me to,

which was Zagreb. And with it, Rovinj Sensual Week.


almost exactly 10 years later,

I visited the Summer Sensual Days in Rovinj.

I always wanted to go to that festival but never really made it. The trip was very spontaneous

- and just like in many cases, spontaneous decisions might be the most memorable. 

On that festival, I have seen lots of classes dedicated to musicality on many levels

- the backbone of musical dancing.


II The present: Musicality Workshops
I attended workshops of musicality and related topics

in Rovinj and other festivals like Sevilla / Ulm / Stockholm / Málaga

because I was curious how
and what
was taught in those classes.
As usual, there were more women / follower attending these classes than men / leader who,
let us be honest,
would need these classes so


much more.

In short summary, I think these classes were very good regarding content.

I liked the concepts of "masculine" and "feminine" energy

(dynamic leading&following).
I liked the structure of Bachata music being explained in a few simple meaningful dance patterns


What I did not like was the
tone: this "determination"

of how the content was taught
"The music is the boss" "You have to do this" "You must do that".


Yes, it is a clear and short message hopefully to be remembered.

But just as in any song, the tone makes the music.
Maybe the teachers can allow themselves teach like this
because people go to a musicality class on purpose / out of "free will"
but is it really
helpful to dictate what people have to do?

(Like me? Becoming the Rumpelstilzchen of Bachata?)

I think it is wise to emphasize the gain of musicality
but not by being a ruler on the throne (sorry Romeo)

telling people how it is done by the "superior teachers/artists way"
- this might be working when teachers


teachers to save time and cut to the chase.

Rather, one should always emphasize
why it's good for a student to learn musicality
for their own good.

And many who attend musicality workshops already know about the vast gain of it.
It should never be for somebody else, it is for their
own joy.

Do we have to show off when "crazy good Asian dancers" come to Europe and expect high quality?
Do we have to dance complicated sequences to impress others because we can hear the music properly?
Do we want to have the most fun possible on the dance floor
as an emotional unity between two persons and music itself?
Personally, I would say: HELL YEA!

Why else would I dance anyway?

If I "just" want to move my body and limbs in a predefined rhythm,

I can also go hiking, snowboarding or surfing or whatever.

No need to push women around for that ;)

If I want to move body and soul at the same time,

dancing does the trick.

Especially dancing in a couple.

Musicality is not
something that must interest everybody.

After all, not everybody might be suited to it anyways.
Yet, it should be offered to anybody

especially in Bachata dancing,

as a concept to be used.

Not everybody will feel what people feel when they listen to their beloved music.
But for those who want to feel it,

not only by listening,
but also physically with their manifestations in flesh on the dance floor,
this is the only way to go to the state

where almost all students want to be.


I would bet that participants of the "fisiodance" (Physiodance) class on Be Unlike in Sevilla

have learned more about connection to music and people

than participants who attended all other dance classes except for this one.

hy does everything look so different when you teachers dance?"

Because they train their figures to perfection?

Maybe partially. Maybe not entirely.

I`d say
because they feel it.

And they can't help but feel it.
You see E-motion, (ex-motion, motion going outwards)

not the sole motion.

Often, this is what people try to mimic: the expression
where in reality, th
e expression is a result of the music

and not of your intention of expression

(=copying the looks of emotion, the figures).

A fake expression will hardly generate the energy

which a song can generate.

Yes, it is possible to a certain degree as well to mimic physical expressions
and it is also important to smile (
a thing called "positive reinforcement")

and to -actively- move your body
because by doing so,

to a certain extent,

you will become what you do.

(in a sense, fake it till you make it

 - if it does not go wrong by over-using it)

Still, it is soo much more natural and easier

(and comes more to the "true feeling")
when you just let go with the music

concentrating on it instead of

on each other too much

(which is hard to do with so many pretty & elegant women, I have to admit).

In a physical analogy, I would say:
Musicality is simple constructive interference.
In best case, it is a resonance disaster.

What? A disaster?

What is "constructive interference" anyway?
When two waves (e.g. electromagnetic waves, water waves, ...)

have the same frequency and are in a very similar phase,
the maxima of the waves add up 1+1 = 2.
If you repeat this system (=oscillate) at the resonance frequenc
y (= the music),

the energy adds up each time, gets more and more.

This is why bridges can break catastrophically

when a military unit marches unisono over it (=resonance disaster);
this is also how monster waves come into existence on the ocean.

I claim that any "serious" dancer wants to be in that state and no other,

accumulating the energy of the music and transport it,

in optimum case, toward the end of the song.

The legion on a bridge,

the monster wave.

Call it what you wish.

What is constructive interference regarding dancing?
It is the connection of two people with a song
who ride on the energies of expression a song has to offer
which is the making of a third abstract person

(= the song, a mixture of many musicians with a predominant presence of a singer)

- in sum, kind of a threesome which is much more than only the sum of three parts.

By using the emotional and structural details of a song,

being in phase with the music through your connected bodies,
you can feel th
is constructive interference
and by "being attached" to another person through leading and following,
you can trap the resonance.

This is what musicality can offer for those who seek it
which is much more energy

than anything else you do while "dancing"

(e.g. moving randomly as you please

without connection to the music

or moving for a camera that captures your sole intention of posing),

- just in my personal humble opinion.

III Social Dancing

Rovinj was huge, expensive

and probably also very international regarding the guests from all across the globe.
On the one hand, I was not prepared to be overwhelmed by the sheer number of hundreds of people

and infinite glances of eyes
that I had to expect on the biggest Bachata festival

that I have been to so far (apart from the Bachata World Congress in Madrid).
Unfortunately, on the saturday party,
I felt the vast number of people with not an inch of space left on the dance floor
which forced me to


dance to the music due to safety reasons for followers
after I was responsible for a woman hurting her head in a cambré

- classic contra-sensual fail.

I would really appreciate if organizers lack space,
do not sell tickets infinitely,
just stop at some point
or plan for
a spontaneous third dance floor just in case for a most frequented saturday evening.
I dont mind dancing to a spotify list

if there only is space to dance
and I can guarantee, others do not mind either

if the alternative is a big meat ball.
There is no need for hundreds of people to sweat in the densest packing of spheres
and call it "dancing".
Sure, if people prefer this kind of dance so let them have it (Tomorrowland (non-sobre) or wherever you wanna go)

- but not everybody likes being a passive dancer in a social couple dance
being kicked around by waves of people.

On the other hand,
Rovinj Summer Sensual Days was the first festival
since years
where I stayed till the very last song on monday morning 6 am

when rays of the morning sun shone through the door
because the music told me so.

The first festival

where I've seen sunlight after a long night,

I stayed out of joy.

It was good music to dance with musicality.
It was good music to study the musicality of people.
It was diverse Bachata music

(even though the biggest hits were played like 6 times each
where Bachata has so much more good music to offer over the past decades of creation).

Now, after gathering and discussing, the DJs did their job well in Rovinj which,
for me,
they lacked for so long in this scene.

For me,

a sign that the community matures.

On the
adrenalin side,

striving for community energy with dance animations,
on the spiritual side,

letting a romantic song

just be

a romantic song.


Bachata Remixes with low BPM are just like a Pizza Margherita:

if you can make the "simple" dish right and tastey,

most probably you will also succeed with more complicated dishes.

This is how I would test the cooking skills of any restaurant.

Especially the low BPM Bachata songs are most interesting for first steps of musicality in dancing.

Maybe the various songs that concentrate on "heavy breaks" (absolute 0 volume) nowadays

will be the first step towards musical dancing.

I like that Remix DJs and productions use this option of accent-remixing to think about danceability of songs.

Just to be cautious not to generate songs completely artificially for the sole purpose of a resulting dance move.

The musical art with acoustic body and soul has to stand on its own

- without promotion videos and without intended dance patterns.

With the recognition of a fundament of

"musical Bachata music" by some DJs,
the heavy ball of responsibility

pushing the lever of Bachata

is again

and FINALLY after several years
passed on

to the dance teachers.

To be
completely honest, it was quite devastating
looking at how people
(not just "any people" but enthusiastic Bachater@s from across the globe)
reacted to Bachata music

(= the content of music or lyrics),
which, frankly,
was not the case at all.

Obviously, few international people understand the spanish language to interpret Bachata song texts

but even musically, there was not much to admire

or just enjoy by watching.

On those parties all together with hundreds and hundres of people,
I have seen roughly
- 3 leaders dancing to the musi
c of a full song (an estimated 0.1 %),
- a couple of dozen leaders that reacted to a few fractions of songs,
- everybody reacting to music breaks and outros,
which is more like "level 2 of 10" regarding musicality.

I have scarcely seen anybody dancing to anything which this wonderful music has to offer.
Even when one of the DJs played a song

where the audio volume concentrated on the voice exclusively

(he cut / reduced the frequencies and volumes of instruments),
I have not seen anything but

body noise

on the dance floor.

It was a nice experiment I think

yet, still, with an outcome

that puts you down to earth once more.

So, the question remains:

Do I dream of something which is impossible for most people?

Am I raising my silent voice for a negligible minority of people listening to the music?

Am I expecting everyone to dedicate their life to Bachata

to be able to dance musically, which, frankly, will not happen?

(Because, obviously, people have other obligations in life too)

Is this the result of years of pointless Bachata Pop-Chart music

with few to no musical depth? (More a provoking question than a real one)

Is the lack of musicality classes

(which should ideally be 50% of the total content (I do not talk about theory classes))

and lacking teachers for it affecting this as well?


Maybe it is the first, maybe the second, maybe the third,

maybe it is a combination of all three questions or anything else.


We will not have a chance to find out

if we do not keep trying.

Keep experimenting,

keep asking questions to others

and to ourselves.


IV The Future


For 10 years now I have followed this "scene".

This scene growing like crazy so that "Bachata" has got a name

that people recognize even in smallest Swiss towns,
this scene reinventing itself in diverse styles and with thousands of Remixes,
this scene coming back to the roots of what Bachata
is and
is supposed to be.

What could happen next?

Why am I not such a big fan of Bachata Remixes as a foundation for musical dancing

in the Bachata scene

(even though the compositioral quality of Remixes increased to an acceptable level nowadays)?

In theory, it does not matter

with which kind of music you learn to dance musically - be it a Remix or not (or any other music & dance style).

Obviouosly, people would like to learn dancing to the songs that they know and love.

But are people only dancing "Sensual style" for the sake of Sensual dancing?

Then we do not need Bachata Remixes at all. You can dance sensual to any song which is not Bachata,

e.g. the advanced musicality class on a Bachata festival in Stockholm has rather been taught on a "naked" Pop song.

But is this the best way? Personally I would say no.

I would prefer that people first learn to dance with musicality

on their "own" dance style (Bachata dancing if you go to Bachata dance classes and dance on Bachata music)
before they start mixing their dance style with any other music
and their corresponding dance styles

(e.g. Pop, Hip Hop, Ballroom, Jazz, Contemporary, ...).


Not for political or cultural reasons,

not even for monetary reasons (which Bachata teachers rely on to sell their unique product)

but because Dominican Bachata music is very clean and "simple"

regarding instrument texture, just like in classical music.

These instruments and rhythms are the foundation of any Bachata song and are specific to Bachata music.

One can concentrate on the core elements of interpretation, just like looking at a music sheet.

For learning piano, you can compare it to learning Bach and Beethoven (the melodical and rhythmical base)

before you go deeper for more complicated stuff that you are into

(which, in my personal case, is the transition from musical romanticism to contemporary)

or more diverse stuff such as modern sound textures (Hip Hop, Electronic Music, Pop)

that are not based on real sound textures of real instruments

but are products of sounds which are artificially built.


Even though Remixes exist that can reproduce this "clean" Bachata sound,

I would still go to "real" Bachata first to get a better feeling for this style of music also as a dancer.


Starting with clean Bachata music (be it Dominican, Sensual or - if need be- a clean well refined Remix):

Clean Guitar, Voice, Bongo, Güira,

and then choose your instrument/melody/harmony

to lead or follow with your body.

Often, Pop songs do only provide versatility to play with the singing voice

where good Bachata songs offer more layers of interpretation with instruments on top.

Why do I often say people dance Salsa on Bachata music?

In Salsa music, there are a lot of fast-playing instruments

that hardly can be matched by any "average dancer's" moves in a social dance environment.

Therefore, people just learn figures to match the rhythm.

Musicality is often reserved for shows, meaning choreographies,

where people sit down for days or even weeks figuring out how to interpret these very many little details

the most efficient way. Other than that its only strong accents which are typically used.

For shows, it is like composing another layer of physical notes to an existing piece of musical notes.


But in social Salsa dancing,

they add another "visible instrument" to the music with their bodies

which, most of the time, is completely detached from the music

except for the rhythm.


Teaching Bachata figures nowadays is still the same system,

also because Bachata dance-wise "emancipated itself" from Salsa.

It is time to go for the next step and match figures to music

- to be used in a social dance.

The very reason Bachata became so popular is musicality,

with the choreography of Ataca y la Alemana,

simply using the music at hand which offers variety of interpretation:

Obsesión of Aventura.

(on top, for the musical structure of Obsesión (especially the refrain),

many accents of the music fit with regular Bachata moves by chance)

For musicality in Bachata social dancing, the idea is twofold,

Step 1) Learn how to listen to the details in the music

            (or ultimately also in the lyrics / intention of the singer & song)

Step 2) Learn how to anticipate interpretation of fitting moves in real time (in contrast to a choreography)

            e.g. how a dance teacher prepares a choreography for their students,

                  the students themselves need to practice this creative process

                  of generating an "intuitive live choreography".


I believe dancing musically on a social dance party is not a gift of god

where the lucky ones just use dance figures "the right way".

It can be tought if you know how to

and are willing to teach it.

Obviously, people should start with simple moves.

Just like in any other genre, e.g. when you are popping on Hip Hop beats.

Therefore, it makes most sense to teach musicality in parallel to beginners classes

or, as is already done, in the warm-up (if passive conditioning works - as nothing is explained there)

but without overstraining capabilites and motivation of newbies.


When the musicality basics of Bachata dancing are set,

on top, you are good to go anywhere else as well.
You go in any club
and dance Bachata in a couple
to Hip Hop music,
to Reggae Music,
to Electronic Music
to any music with the right BPM and content of the song that can be interpreted

(which is roughly 50 % of commercial songs)

- or make a Bachata Remix out of it and use it in the Bachata context.

Obviously, different music styles would fit different movements that might not be typical Bachata moves.

Let us set an ambitious goal.

To improve musicality in the Bachata scene by a factor of 200.

Wow, that sounds a lot... and

what does this mean anyway?

As mentioned, musicality (especially in Bachata for Bachata / Latin dancers)

is probably not for everybody for various reasons (although it should be offered to anybody),
so let us be realistic.

If it is possible that,
in roughly 5 years
(hitting year 2030)
20 % of the people attending Bachata festivals
(=the self-proclaimed "best"/most enthusiastic ones)

will dance to the music instead of
with the music,
I believe Bachata
will have gained good chances to become an avantgarde of social dances,

a high quality social dance for anyone

- sounds like a contradiction, but is it?

20 % of the people will be a critical mass of social dancers
- enough people to constantly inspire others,
to wonder why they cannot stop looking
and enjoying
what they see

because they see
pure joy.

How can this be achieved?


This will probably be the most complicated challenge of all challenges so far.

But just as in any computer game, the final boss is the most difficult one to beat.

Firstly, I believe, for most people, it is a long way of

un-training "random figure dancing" as it is already been taught,
especially too complex figures that are mainly danced for reasons of excessive styling

(="evolution of figures", the strive to make dancing even more versatile

by inventing more degrees of freedom in radial space).

Does this mean one should not teach complex figures? No.

It just means that most people will probably not be able to adapt those figures to music in social dancing

- ever, in their lifetime. So they might use it in a social dance of course, but for me it is rather a waste of energy.

Maybe some figures they should not even use for safety reasons.


The "un-training" could be more relevant for extraverts with sportive background

who, I assume, might undergo a different learning curve

compared to introverts with musical background.

Extraverts long for the most complex physical expression and highest gain of fun in shortest practice time possible;

they might learn with failure and pain in a more chaotic way towards the "ideal social dance level",

a dance level which I would define as a mix of most fun:

maximum technique, feeling and musicality with a pleasant energy level.

Typically, only at the very end of their intense learning curve,

they might start to work with the music (if they start with it at all during their lifetime).

In comparison, introverts might learn a dance in a more systematic, cautious and slower way,

first putting a focus on the connection between

ear (listening, anticipating details of music),

feeling (receiving the listened with your body)
and the final basic movements that everybody uses (
steps, turns, twists, waves, combinations...).

Just my theory.

My point is that people might have different approaches learning musicality during their dancer's lifetime.

Learning to speak meaningful sentences with your human voice as a child takes years

Learning to speak with a musical instrument is no different - it takes much time and effort,

- and so does musical dancing.
Adapting simple pieces to the music first in a quite small dose

just like in a choreography

(I feel like this is what Remixes try to achieve nowadays to start

with more "complete breaks (volume 0)" in the music

in analogy to many of Romeo`s songs which are very popular amongst dancers).

Yet, introverts might ignore the sweet spot of dancing

(=not every single note has to be covered with an expression)

and by pure perfectionism may overshoot towards the unhealthy zone in the long run.

Where extraverts might never get to the point of musical dancing,

introverts might destroy their fun by getting lost in the many -seemingly endless- details of music.


In an analogy, I would compare it with written language:

if each movement is a letter

musical dancing is generating words and putting them in the right order

for them to make sense.

If you dance with random figures, you might generate words which do still not make sense.

They are just a row of random letters.

People (and also many teachers) do not really care about them making any sense

in connection to the music

because they can only reproduce what they are taught,

which is 95% figures = "words", an expression of certain movements in a row

to any random part of any random piece of music.


From time to time, I hear an opinion,

commenting on the Kizomba dance style with:

"this is not a dance - they do not even move!"

The average person expects dancing to be

predominantly a physical, visible movement

- no matter how the words are arranged,

so for most spectators of dances,

"musicality" is nothing they do understand

but in the end, they still wonder

why they like some choreographies much more than others,

why they feel some and do not feel others.

To conclude with this first point, 

is it practical to "un-train" figures and to re-learn them in connection to music?

For the current generation which is used to dance random figures for years,

it might just have become too complicated.

Unlearning and changing habits takes a lot of effort.

But for the next generation, it would be very helpful to start right away

by teaching how musicality adds up in Bachata in -every- course.

Secondly, I believe it will be important that people need to actively learn dynamics
(in their physical memory of movements) to adapt their current figures

Adapting means to use a figure (or a part of a figure) in different ways.

Figures are no static objects but change in several parameters like speed, extent and even meaning.


(Careful: I do not talk about combining figures or parts of figures in another way.

This is another heavily underrated topic in lessons for people to understand

how they can alter similar movements and/or the outcome towards another movement.)

Most people dance like "text-to-speech": Talking monotonous words without emphasis or reading flow, sounding artificial and empty. There is no melody in it.

Compare with the Italian language which sounds like a play in every sentence.

I have heard this so many times from teachers

"....and adapt it [this figure] to the music"
but I think I have never
seen a teacher SHOWING

(like these capital letters show emphasis)
what adapting really means in combination with music.

It is very important to show exactly what adaption means regarding a certain piece of music.


An example:
5 songs --- 1 (ideally simple) figure or even movement --- 5 different interpretations

(e.g. timing, size, direction, intention, meaning)

and emphasize that

the adaption does not come from the intention of "showing off"

(e.g. now I use this figure with a bigger radius and more energy)

but simply because the music feels like this adaption suits better in this specific part of this song

(e.g. there is an increase in volume in the song or a base drop is coming, ...)

and an explanation why the teacher would go with a certain, mostly intuitive, interpretation for this figure.

Best to show the difference between a "neutral figure" and the adapted figure to the music

(e.g. a body wave in a certain specific timing matching the music).


In most cases, this topic is taught "on the side" by telling people

to really mean what you dance with your expression

(e.g. dont just drop your hand for a caricia, really mean it),

but it is always a generalized in teaching, never a very specific example to music

which would make so much more sense to show concretely

when you learn a specific figure in a certain class anyway.

It is also a question of the difference between

a) learning plenty of figures in a sloppy way (= festival digest)

to "survive a dance song with enough content to offer"

(or to "get most out of your paid money")


b) learning and individually selecting rather few personal movements and leadings in a precise way

and alter them to the needs of a song

Thirdly, and this is another difficult task,

it is mainly the leaders who need musicality training.

I believe leaders typically do not understand the "importance" or gain of musicality classes

because they are used to learning figures.

Maybe they are also frightened of it

or do not feel like their "dance level" is high enough to make use of it, I have no idea.

It might also be more fun to learn figures because you can "grasp" it way easier than musicality.

The more physically demanding, the better for most of them.

When leaders have to explain what they have learned in a musicality class,

they would say "this and this figure - so not much"

and rather change to a class with more complex figures.

Obviously they do not get the content of the class

or how they should use the information which they have been given.

This is also because of how they are trained to learn in any class:

physical execution.


I believe many followers (mainly women),

for some reason unknown to me,

do have a better access to music interpretation and its details,

maybe because

by being lead, they can focus more on the song, the core part of dancing.

Some start to close their eyes,

some start to sing to get a more intense connection,

and so on.

Yes, unfortunately,

the to-do list for leaders is already very long:

entertaining followers, clean and creative leading,

and now everything has to be coordinated with music, too?

In live anticipation of the parts of the song?

Wow... the list of simultaneous tasks seems endless.

The challenge is great,

but the reward

is even greater.

Fourthly, it will be a topic to change the mindset of followers as well,

not to expect the utmost ride of figures and movements

(I would claim this is a typical wish of Salsa followers and the reason why they dance Salsa

- to experience the most diverse, fast and complex movements of the many different leaders)

but to get a better and deeper feeling for the details of Bachata figures,

also to enjoy the little details (if lead by any leader) in a more intense way,

maybe even help leaders in anticipating music if the follower knows the song better

(but without taking the lead! just small hints of movement suffice which I have already experienced).

Personally, I could not imagine being a follower who, on average,

has to endure 19 dances without musicality for

one dance with a tiny little bit of musicality.

Women are very patient and forgiving with men in that regard, I have to say,

which makes sense if you want to keep the ones that are even interested in dancing.

I also see more and more women leading on parties which might just be the reason for that.

Thus, most of the time, those female leaders use more musicality than 90% of the remaining male leaders.


Also, give leaders a chance to

not only learn figures

but also to learn how to react to music

without the pressure of a constant performer

- just an idea.


we are in an age of ever-present internet and global interconnection with lots of media platforms.

The best way to show someone how to dance musically is to know which songs they are dancing to.

I am sure there are plenty of databases with statistics like Spotify which songs are played the most.

Unfortunately one does not know which songs are played the most by dancers

but since big companies know almost everything about us anyways by profiling,

it would be possible to extract which songs people do dance on the most

and pick those songs.

Maybe in case of the Bachata scene, the amount of "good" songs in total is still relatively low

so there is more or less a consensus of which kind of music teachers use and which kind of music people dance on.

But as I have shown the last years, this might not be congruent with many DJs for several reasons.


I would like to introduce something very important called the "musical yield".

This mainly refers to the responsibility of DJs (/Producers/Composers/Musicians)

as well as leaders alike.

Different songs do have a different potential regarding musical dancing.


There are songs with hardly any content that can be interpreted musically

(e.g. songs that are generic, e.g. very close to "pure" rhythms and basic chords of Bachata,

  but don't forget to compare to the analogy Pizza Margherita!!)

and other songs that offer plenty of variability (be it small/slow or big/strong, doesn't matter the size).


This is why I will share my collection of "best Bachata songs for musical dancing"

to get an idea which songs might be suited for musical social dancing or not.

Of course, the musical yield also depends on the leader's ability to hear/detect the details of a song

as well as his ability to transform it into a motion with his set of available figure and motion repertoire.

If a DJ would just play any random Bachata song out there

which is technically classified as such (e.g. instruments, rhythm, ...),

there is a high chance that this song (out of thousands of available Bachata songs)

will have a maximum "musical yield" of probably 10 - 30 % regarding the full length of the track.

This is where even musical leaders cannot "do anything" but react to basic rhythms and melody of Bachata

which annoys me, personally, and prevents me from dancing Bachata.

With an average dancer, there might be in a good case

a maximum musical yield of 5 % which can potentially be realized.

This would mean that, on average, only 1 out of 20 seconds of a song is a second

that will be interpreted reasonably.

Yes, there are still 19 seconds which do contain Bachata rhythms and melodies

but they are completely interchangeable between different songs

="random Bachata music" which could be implemented in any Bachata song.

It does not matter which song is played,

the remaining "non-musical yield" does only apply to standard rhythms and patterns of Bachata music.

I would prefer that DJs aim to play more songs which allow at least 50-70 % of musical yield

to enable musical dancers to enjoy the party even more.

Obviously, not each and every detail needs to be interpreted by any leader

but still, having more versatility enables more creativity

and provides a chance for a more unique, memorable dance.

Now, some dancers and teachers might say

"you can interpret any song no matter how simple or complicated it is

- it just depends on your dance ability"

and in theory, this might be completely right.

You can experience this on many Bachata shows where even songs with low musical yield are interpreted quite well just because the performers had a lot of time to identify the small details,

which might not work as well in social dancing.

You could also say "you can eat any honey no matter how it is produced"

depending on

if you can truly call most of the content of modern honey jars in supermarkets


I would rely on the local bee keeper

with bee-made honey from the local woods and meadows

instead of a European mix of different sources of some sugary thing that might


feel and

taste like honey

but does not have the tiny invisible ingredients in-between that make real honey

healthy and special

- the hard work that has been put in it by hundreds of diligent bees for it to come into existence.

More to say,

it is not only about looks and taste

but about what the song does to your body

(just like any healthy food)

while consuming and transforming it.

Finally, what´s the huge advantage of musical dancing?

It does barely depend on age or fitness,

I does not even depend on a dance style nor dance level,

unlike other activities involving physical exercise (e.g. sports of any kind).

It does only depend on your ability and your willingness to


You can use musicality throughout your entire life

and even beyond dancing.


V Epilogue - The Fangs



You summoned Diabaile, and now-

how to get the djini back into his bottle?


As for me, personally,

after 37 years on this earth, the fangs become blunt

which means that Bachata will finally get rid of the bite in its neck

and the Vamp can focus on

making people showing their teeth as well

and smile.

I would like to encourage everybody who can identify onself with these thoughts,

who digests and judges my ideas on their own 

to keep trying to push the limits of Bachata social dancing



Yours, DJ Vamp Bachata

Bachata Sensual in its first days of an international mission.

Rules of composition

The all-devouring "Bachata Monster"

Span up the possibilities of Bachata

Little peninsula with big impact

The basics of Bachata music translated to dancing


Which kind of music do you love?
Which dance style matches your body movement?


A trained smile gone wrong

Resonance Trap.jpg

Resonance Trap


Shifting Worlds


The densest packing of spheres

DJ Vamp Nuremberg.jpg

The sting of Bachata approves of several modern Bachata DJs

Z Mixing.jpg

A new type of songs with
dance-centered musicality?


Live mixing with voice only: who will react to it on the dancefloor?

Bachata Name.png

15 years ago, a new dance style was born.
Now, a dance style matures.


The distinct sound and function of real Bachata instruments

Ear Notes.jpg

Processing music with mind and soul

Level Up


Breaking old grindlocked chains back to little pieces


Order in Chaos?

Figures Adapt.png

Shape of Order?

Holy Grail.jpg

The holy grail of social dancing


Mmmmmmhhhh....... every bear likes honey,
even a teddy bear?

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