Today’s recording is a video of Rumba dancers and musicians taken at El Gran Palenque. (Havana, Cuba)
Rumba! Locals are packed in at El Gran Palenque in the Vedado district of Havana, Cuba. It’s a rumba fiesta and all generations are represented in this lively party under the hot Havana sun.
Rumba is a Cuban dance accompanied by a live band. The musicians (rumberos), include a lead singer and percussion. There are three sizes of drums (trumbadoras) and smaller percussion instruments including claves (two hollow sticks struck together), a catá (a small hollow trunk mounted on a stand and struck with two sticks), and sometimes a type of gourd shaker (a gourd covered with a netting of beads).
There are different styles of Rumba including the guaguancó, the columbia, and the yambú. The guanguancó is danced by couples and has a courting element where the man pretends to kick the woman between the legs and the woman quickly covers herself to avoid his advances. The Columbia is a solo dance for males while the yambú is for older people, often accompanied by a cajón, or box drum.