Bachata is a form of music and dance that originated in the countryside and rural marginal neighborhoods of the Dominican Republic. Its subjects are usually romantic; especially prevalent are tales of heartbreak and sadness. In fact, the original term used to name the genre used to be "amargue" ("bitterness," or "bitter music"), until the rather ambiguous (and mood-neutral) term bachata became popular.
Bachata grew out of - and is still closely related to - the pan Latin-American romantic style called bolero. Over time, it has been influenced by merengue - a fast paced danceable music also native to the Dominican Republic - and by a variety of Latin American guitar styles.
The music itself is played in 4/4. The most recognizable aspect of bachata instrumentation is the use of an amplified guitar (either electric or acoustic) whose sound has been doctored with a flanger, reverb, echo, or a combination of the three. The use of arpeggiated chords as the basis for the melody is almost standard. An additional guitar, usually mixed at a lower volume, may be used to provide a basic backbeat, although an electric bass guitar may be used instead. The use of bongo drums as to provide both syncopation and occasional percusive accents is also a feature of bachata; bongo solos during chorus breaks in bachata songs are rather common.
Bachata is a popular guitar music from the Dominican Republic.
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