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Traditional / folk music of CHILE


Chile is one of longest country in the world with the unique geography. Chile is about 4200 kilometers long and just 90 to 445 kilometers wide. It has a long extraordinary coast line from Antarctic sea up to the Equator along the Pacific Ocean and is bordered by the Andes Mountains to the east.  It has an amazing wine industry and benefit considerably from the natural irrigation of pure water from melting snow.

There are evidence of stone tool in Monte Verde valley which comes back to 18500 years ago. Also there are evidences that shows 10000 years ago, migrating Native Americans settled in valleys and coastal area of Chile. In 1520 the first Spanish explorers visit the land today named Chile. Later they conquered Chile and replaced Inca Empire in the north and center of Chile. Chile could declared it's independent in 1818. Later during 19th century Chile had significant economic and territorial growth. 

As Chile was under Spanish Empire ruling, today the folk and traditional music of Chile had been influenced by Spanish music. But it mixed up a lot with local indigenous tribe folk music. Many of these folk music genres are also in common with other neighbor South American countries as the Andean Culture is strong between many of these countries. Most of these folk music is accompanied with dances. In general the folk music of Chile can be categorized in three different category: Northern Chilean folk music, Central Chilean folk music and Southern Chilean folk music.

 The main and biggest ethnic group in Chile were Mapuche people who lived from north until south, but there were not under Inca Empire. So their folk music and instruments are different from others in the north. Another important ethnic group was Fueguinos people. They were living in the south of Chile.

Here we mention some of notable genres of folk music in Chile.

Cueca

This kind of folk music is a kind of dance and it is the national dance of Chile. It is like an identity of Chilean people. It is also popular in some other Andean countries like Peru, Bolivia and Argentina. It is categorized as music of central part, but it is common and used in all the country today. Especially in the Independence Day celebration. The exact origin of this folk music is not very clear, but it must be come from Spanish traditions which mixed with indigenous music style. 

Tonada

 This type of folk music is also from central part of Chile. It is not a dance and it distinguished from cueca with its slow-moving song with a melancholy theme. The modern tonada is typically simple and "monotonous". It is said that tonada has Spanish origin. 

Huayno

 This type of folk music can be categorized under Northern Chilean folk music. It is a popular Andean music and dance which originated in the mountains of Peru. It belongs to different ethnic tribes of Andean specially Quechua people. It is performed by different type of instruments like violin, quena (flute), harp, siku (panpipe), accordion, saxophone, charango, lute, guitar, and mandolin. In different Andean country, different combination of these instruments are used. This music and also similar folk genres in the north of Chile created when European culture meet up with ethnic group music in the Andean. 

Payada

 This type of folk music is also common in Argentina and Uruguay. Payador is the name of the person who perform this type of folk music. It is a performance of improvised verse usually accompanied by guitar. In the performances two or more payadores will compete to produce the most eloquent verse. It is like a duel in singing and making poems with questions and answers style. 

Nueva canción

This type of music was a big music movement which started in 60s. Then it was also appeared in many other South American countries, Spain and Cuba. This genre of music and movement happened by the effort of Violeta Parra. Victor Jara was also one of the most characteristic musician of Nueva canción who began its traditions of criticizing government officials and policies. Jara was arrested shortly after the Chilean coup of 11 September 1973, which overthrew Allende. He was tortured during interrogations and ultimately shot dead, and his body was thrown out on the street of a shantytown in Santiago. Since September 1973, the new military government of Augusto Pinochet threatened Nueva Canción artists, driving them underground during the 1970s.

City folk music

This type of folk music also known as "Música Tipica"(traditional music). It was the rebirth of urban music inside the cities, radios and the music industry. This happened by the effort of bands like Los Huasos de Chincolco, Los Huasos Quincheros, Los Cuatro Hermanos, Ester Sore. Later this mentality continued by musicians like Victor Jara, Violeta Parra and caused to the birth of Nueva canción.


Some other genre of folk music which can be mentioned in Chile are Pericona, El Costillar, El Chapecao.


Chile has many more types of folk music. If you have information about them, please kindly help us improve this article. You can also send some Chilean folk songs from the "Post a song" link in top menu. If you see any mistake in the tags of song list below, please kindly let us know through Contact Us page.


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Traditional / folk songs for CHILE


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Los De Ramón
Song:  Camarón
By:  Los De Ramón
folk music of Chile, traditional music of Chile, Chilean folk music
Los De Ramón
Song:  El Curanto
By:  Los De Ramón
folk music of Chile, traditional music of Chile, Chilean folk music

Victor Jara
Song:  A Desalambrar
By:  Victor Jara
folk music of Chile, traditional music of Chile, nueva canción
Victor Jara
Song:  Ojitos Verdes
By:  Victor Jara
folk music of Chile, traditional music of Chile, charango, zampolla

Victor Jara
Song:  La Partida
By:  Victor Jara
folk music of Chile, traditional music of Chile, nueva canción
Victor Jara
Song:  El Arado
By:  Victor Jara
folk music of Chile, traditional music of Chile, nueva canción

Inti-Illimani
Song:  El Pueblo Unido Jamás Será Vencido
By:  Inti-Illimani
folk music of Chile, traditional music of Chile
Inti-Illimani
Song:  Samba Landó
By:  Inti-Illimani
folk music of Chile, Chilean folk music, traditional music of Chile

Violeta Parra
Song:  Maldigo del alto cielo
By:  Violeta Parra
folk music of Chile, Chilean folk music, traditional music of Chile
Violeta Parra
Song:  Gracias a la vida
By:  Violeta Parra
folk music of Chile, Chilean folk music, traditional music of Chile, charango

Margot Loyola
Song:  Huayno
By:  Margot Loyola
folk music of Chile, Chilean folk music, traditional music of Chile, huayno
Margot Loyola
Song:  ¡Naranjas, El Naranjero!
By:  Margot Loyola
folk music of Chile, Chilean folk music, traditional music of Chile, pregón

Margot Loyola
Song:  La Vertiente
By:  Margot Loyola
folk music of Chile, Chilean folk music, traditional music of Chile, tonada
Los de Santiago
Song:  Rosa Colorada
By:  Los de Santiago
folk music of Chile, Chilean folk music, traditional music of Chile

Los de Santiago
Song:  A Don Ata (chacarera)
By:  Los de Santiago
folk music of Chile, Chilean folk music, traditional music of Chile, chacarera
Rolando Alarcón
Song:  El Quinto Regimiento
By:  Rolando Alarcón
folk music of Chile, traditional music of Chile, nueva canción

Rolando Alarcón
Song:  Canción de los Soldados
By:  Rolando Alarcón
folk music of Chile, traditional music of Chile, nueva canción
Rolando Alarcón
Song:  Si Somos Americanos
By:  Rolando Alarcón
folk music of Chile, traditional music of Chile

Tito Fernández
Song:  La Cueca Larga De Los Curaos
By:  Tito Fernández
folk music of Chile, Chilean folk music, traditional music of Chile, cueca
Tito Fernández
Song:  Dicen Que Soy Borracho
By:  Tito Fernández
folk music of Chile, traditional music of Chile, nueva canción


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