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This article is on the music of Andalusia, a region in Spain. There is also a kind of music called Andalusian classical music, which is today almost entirely known in North African and especially Moroccan music.

Andalusia is a region in Spain that is best-known for flamenco, a form of music and dance that is mostly performed by andalusian people and popular throughout the world. Arab Muslims influence seems common, and more inherent than in the rest of Spain.

Improvised flamenco songs of ancient Andalusian origin are called cante jondo, and are characterized by a reduced tonal ambiance, a lack of rhythm, baroque ornamentation and repetition of notes. Cante jondo is sung by a single singer (Cantaor).


There are two forms of flamenco songs: cante jondo and cante chico. Cante jondo are slower and usually feature sad lyrics about disappointed love or death, while cante chico are much quicker, more popular and dance-oriented. The concept of duende is very important in flamenco. Loosely, defined, duende is a spiritual or emotional bond between the performer and audience, created by the performer's intense concentration and passion.

There are multiple styles (palos) of flamenco, including:

The guitar is a vital instrument to flamenco; it marks the measure of a song, and is frequently used in expressive solos during which the guitarist will improvise short variations called falsetas. Ramón Montoya was the most influential early guitarist, known for having solidified the guitar as a solo instrument. His successors included Manolo Sanlúcar and Paco de Lucía.


The golden age of flamenco is said to be 1869 to 1910, later becoming more and more popularized internationally and influenced by South American music, especially the tango. Musicians from the golden age performed at bars called café cantantes, such as Café de Chinitas in Málaga, which was made famous by the poetry of García Lorca. Other musicians of the early 20th century include Manolo Caracol, who walked from Jerez to participate in a cante jondo competition, which he won.

Though the golden age had long since passed, the 1950s saw flamenco achieving increased respectability in Spain. Hispavox, a Spanish record label, released Antología del Cante Flamenco in 1956; the recording's collection of most all of the greatest flamenco singers was very popular. In 1956, the first national cante jondo competition was held in Cordoba, followed by a Chair of Flamencology being established at Jerez in 1958.

In the late 1950s and early 1960s, Antonio Mairena and similar artists kelped kickstart a flamenco revival as American and British rock began dominating the Spanish music scene. Emerging from this, Camarón de la Isla became one of the most popular and critically acclaimed performers of the century. His 1969 debut Con la Colaboracion Especial de Paco de Lucia inspired a new generation of performers that invented Nuevo Flamenco.

In the 1970s and 80s, salsa, blues, rumba and other influences were added to flamenco, along with music from Morocco and India. Ketama's 1988 debut, Ketama, was especially influential. At the beginning of the 1990s, the Madrid label Nuevos Medios became closely associated with the new flamenco fusion music, which came to be called nuevo flamenco.



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