Chief Librarian Sarah Aponte would like to thank Benjamin de Menil and iASO Records for their kind donation of Dominican-related music volumes to our Library.
This donation includes something for everyone, especially bachata enthusiasts and interests. Bachata Breakdown: for dancers, instructors, musicians and enthusiasts is an album that includes a breakdown of bachata rhythms and sounds coupled with the rhythm a dancer needs to hold while dancing. This sort of album is perfect for those learning how to dance and for those looking to teach others about bachata.
The DVD Bachata Breakdown: ¡En Vivo! gives the same sort of introduction but this time you get to see everything in video form, with the musicians playing their instruments and introducing the sounds and rhythms they will be playing.
La Familia Soriano is a music album that introduces the world to the musical talents of Joan Soriano’s sisters Nelly and Griselda, and brother Fernando. This album offers 14 tracks, some of which are solo tracks as well as collaborations between the siblings. Something notable about this album is that some of the songs included are covers. The covers give us a look into the personalities and likenesses since the artist, be it Joan or any of his siblings, insert some of their own flare that makes their version stand on its own when compared to the original rendition. For example “Unión eterna”, “Cuanto lloré”, and “Vamos hablar inglés”.
El Duque de la Bachata is one of Joan Soriano’s solo works. The album features 12 tracks, which are a mix of bachata and merengue. Soriano delivers on every track, conveying happiness and good times in tracks like “María Elena” and sadness and uncertainty in tracks like “Su lado de cama” and “¿Que pasará mañana?” As a bonus the DVD The Duke of Bachata is included. This DVD gives us a glimpse into the life of Soriano as a struggling bachatero trying to “make it”. For more in depth information on this DVD please click here.
The compilation album Bachata Legends features artists such as Ramón Cordero, el Chivo Sin Ley, and Leonardo Paniagua. This album takes us to the early days of bachata when the musical style would best be referred to as amargue (bitterness) with tracks such as “Con el amor no se juega” by Augusto Santos and “Bendita nena” by El Chivo Sin Ley. Bachata Legends features 14 tracks somehow different from the mainstream bachata. This album is a plus for the traditional bachata enthusiasts or for those interested in hearing their favorite hits in a higher fidelity.
Running with the theme of traditional bachata, we have Puerto Plata and his albums Casita de Campo and Mujer de Cabaret, both include traditional bachata songs. The albums also include some original work that corresponds well with the classic tracks, showing that the old school bachata is ingrained deeply in the blood of Puerto Plata.
Once again thanks to Benjamin de Menil and iASO Records for donating and bringing out all this music for the world to hear and enjoy. Aside from the music quality, the packaging of the discs themselves should also be noted; some come in cardboard cases that feature art, booklets that contain biographies and other historical information surrounding the artist and the music. The albums as well as their packages are made with great care and appreciation for those enthusiasts and for those new comers who would love to learn more about this music genre. If you would like to know more about iASO records please visit iasorecords.com
Antonio Perez, Library Intern