Music of Ecuador

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The music of Ecuador has a long history. Pasillo is a genre of indigenous Latin music. It is extremely popular in Ecuador, where it is the "national genre of music." Pasillo as a genre is also present in the highland regions of Colombia and to a lesser extent, Panama and Venezuela.

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Today, it has incorporated more European features of classical dance, such as waltz. As it spread during the Gran Chaco period, pasillo also absorbed the individual characteristics of isolated villages. This gives it an eclectic feel; however, the style, tone, and tempo of the music differ in each village.

In its waltz, pasillo alters the classically European dance form to accompany guitar, mandolin, and other string instruments.

The pacific coast of Ecuador is known for the Amorfino, a popular type of song, as well as a variety of dance music.

Pasillo, Pasacalle, and Yarabi are popular styles of folksong. the latter being similar to a flute, and is usually downtempo; it is descended from the waltz. Pasacalle is a form of dance music, while the sentimental Yarabi is probably the most popular form in Ecuador.

Pasillo is an Ecuadorian and Colombian genre of music extremely popular in the territories that composed the 19th century Viceroyalty of New Granada and Gran Colombia: Born in Gran Colombia, spread in the territory, especially Ecuador, and to a lesser extent in the mountainous regions of Venezuela and Panama. Venezuelans refer to this style of music as "vals".

Flute musical instrument of the woodwind family

The flute is a family of musical instruments in the woodwind group. Unlike woodwind instruments with reeds, a flute is an aerophone or reedless wind instrument that produces its sound from the flow of air across an opening. According to the instrument classification of Hornbostel–Sachs, flutes are categorized as edge-blown aerophones. A musician who plays the flute can be referred to as a flute player, flautist, flutist or, less commonly, fluter or flutenist.

Waltz dance

The waltz is a ballroom and folk dance, normally in triple  time, performed primarily in closed position.

Andean music (La Sierra)

Andean musician on stage. Musica andina del Ecuador.jpg
Andean musician on stage.

The mountainous, Andean region of Ecuador, the Sierra, is home to a style of music called Sanjuanito  [ es ]. The music of the Otavalo people is well known worldwide. A small panpipe called the rondador is the most distinctive instrument, but ensembles are typically groups of wind instruments, guitar trios, or brass bands. Folk rhythms include cachullapi, yumbo, and danzante. Musicians like Huayanay have helped to popularize Andean-Ecuadoran music.

Otavalo people

The Otavalos are an indigenous people native to the Andean mountains of Imbabura Province in northern Ecuador. The Otavalos also inhabit the city of Otavalo in that province. Commerce and handcrafts are among the principal economic activities of the Otavalos, who enjoy a higher standard of living than most indigenous groups in Ecuador and many mestizos of their area.

Rondador

The rondador is a set of chorded cane panpipes that produces two tones simultaneously. It consists of pieces of cane, placed side by side in order by size and closed at one end, and is played by blowing across the top of the instrument. The rondador is considered the national instrument of Ecuador. Further knowledge on the instrument is required, as the musical scale of which note each tube played projects is unknown.

Wind instrument Class of musical instruments

A wind instrument is a musical instrument that contains some type of resonator, in which a column of air is set into vibration by the player blowing into a mouthpiece set at or near the end of the resonator. The pitch of the vibration is determined by the length of the tube and by manual modifications of the effective length of the vibrating column of air. In the case of some wind instruments, sound is produced by blowing through a reed; others require buzzing into a metal mouthpiece.

Afro ecuadorian music

Afro-Ecuadorian music is mainly of two types. Marimba music comes from Esmeraldas, and gets its name from the prominent use of marimba s, along with drums and other instruments specific to this region such as the bombo, the cununo and the wasa. Sometimes this music is played in religious ceremonies, as well as in celebrations and parties. It features call and response chanting along with the music. Some of the rhythms associated with it are currulao, bambuco and andarele.

Marimba percussion instrument consisting of a set of wooden bars struck with mallets

The marimba is a percussion instrument consisting of a set of wooden bars struck with yarn or rubber mallets to produce musical tones. Resonators or pipes suspended underneath the bars amplify their sound. The bars of a chromatic marimba are arranged like the keys of a piano, with the groups of two and three accidentals raised vertically, overlapping the natural bars to aid the performer both visually and physically. This instrument is a type of idiophone, but with a more resonant and lower-pitched tessitura than the xylophone. A person who plays the marimba is called a marimbist or a marimba player.

On the other hand, in the Chota Valley there is bomba music. This music is very different from marimba, having a more prominent Spanish, mestizo and indigenous influence. It can vary from mid tempo to a very fast rhythm. It is usually played with guitars, as well as the main local instrument called bomba, which is a drum, along with a guiro, and sometimes bombos and bongos. A variation of it played by la banda mocha, groups who play bomba with a bombo, guiro and plant leaves to give melody. Soca music is popular in Esmeraldas

Bomba or Bomba del Chota is an Afro-Ecuadorian music, dance and rum al form from the Chota Valley area of Ecuador in the province of Imbabura and Carchi. Its origins can be traced back to Africa via the middle passage and the use of African slave labor during the country's colonial period. Africans brought to labor as slaves in Ecuador brought with them this music form heavily influenced from the Bantu cultures of the Congo. The people dance in pairs to the drums and use improvisation to build relationships between the dancer and lead drummer.

Religious practice among afro-Ecuadorians is usually Roman Catholic. There is no significant African religion, although Catholic worship is distinctive in Esmeraldas, and sometimes is done with marimba music.

Folk instruments

Percussion instrument Type of musical instrument that produces a sound by being hit

A percussion instrument is a musical instrument that is sounded by being struck or scraped by a beater ; struck, scraped or rubbed by hand; or struck against another similar instrument. The percussion family is believed to include the oldest musical instruments, following the human voice.

Pinkillu

A pinkillu, pinkuyllu or pinqullu is a flute found throughout the Andes, used primarily in Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Ecuador and Peru. It is usually played with one hand, leaving the other one free to accompany oneself on a drum like the tinya. It is used in a variety of public festivals and other kinds of communal ceremonies.

Napo Province Province in Ecuador

Napo is a province in Ecuador. Its capital is Tena. The province contains the Napo River. The province is low developed without much industrial presence. The thick rainforest is home to many natives that remain isolated by preference, descendants of those who fled the Spanish invasion in the Andes, and the Incas years before. In 2000, the province was the sole remaining majority-indigenous province of Ecuador, with 56.3% of the province either claiming indigenous identity or speaking an indigenous language.

Music institutions

The Fundación de Desarrollo Social Afroecuatoriano (AZUCAR) has existed since 1993, and offers a variety of workshops for all ages in music and dance, as well as handicrafts and other topics. More information can be found on their website here.

Music festivals

Ecuador has many annual festivals, with nearly every village celebrating a Roman Catholic Saint. The annual festival in August held in San Antonio de Pichincha is particularly well known, as is the independent music festival Quito Fest.

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