|Music by Country
Meaning "born in the valley," vallenato holds court alongside Cumbia as the most popular musical forms in Colombia. Vallenato origi- nated from the town of Valledupar in the La Guajira region on the north-east side of the country.
What began centuries ago as a form of entertainment on long journeys, vallenato now has huge yearly festivals and competitions, one of which takes place in Villanueva where we were fortunate enough to attend in 2006.
Standard instruments include the accordion, the guacharaca, a ribbed stick which makes a rhythmic scraping sound when a fork like instrument is scraped across it, and the caja, a small but loud drum held between the legs.
Vallenato music consists of four rhythms- merengue, son, paseo, and puya. The merengue used here is not to be confused with merengue from the dominican republic or Son from Cuba, these are simply tempos the accordion player uses to set the rhythm for the particular song.
Vallenato music groups