Evoking the pleasures of music as well as food, the word sabor signifies a rich essence that makes our mouths water or makes our bodies want to move. American Sabor traces the substantial musical contributions of Latinas and Latinos in American popular music between World War II and the present in five vibrant centers of Latin@ musical production: New York, Los Angeles, San Antonio, San Francisco, and Miami. From Tito Puente’s mambo dance rhythms to the Spanglish rap of Mellow Man Ace, American Sabor focuses on musical styles that have developed largely in the United States-including jazz, rhythm and blues, rock, punk, hip hop, country, Tejano, and salsa-but also shows the many ways in which Latin@ musicians and styles connect US culture to the culture of the broader Americas.
With side-by-side Spanish and English text, authors Marisol Berríos-Miranda, Shannon Dudley, and Michelle Habell-Pallán challenge the white and black racial framework that structures most narratives of popular music in the United States. They present the regional histories of Latin@ communities-including Chicanos, Tejanos, and Puerto Ricans-in distinctive detail, and highlight the shared experiences of immigration/migration, racial boundary crossing, contesting gender roles, youth innovation, and articulating an American experience through music. In celebrating the musical contributions of Latinos and Latinas, American Sabor illuminates a cultural legacy that enriches us all.
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