When examining certain performers, singers, and musicians, there is something about some of them, who are able to make the stage come alive. There is nothing else to it. Either you can make arenas dance or you can’t. Yet, when stages dance, a magnetic wonder of animation, resonates with the audience. It doesn’t matter how much it is repeated. Continue to do it and its energy spreads throughout any given spacing. Many of the most iconic performers, regardless of where they are from, understand this. People leave concerts feeling they have been redeemed or restored. Forget about life’s problems. Music 🎶🎶🎶 brings healing, and you are able to have fun in the process.
Returning to the Republica Dominicana, another legend has painted the canvass with blackened desires. Making it beautiful, and highlighting the miracles of those Afro-Dominican women artists, the Blackness of Merengue and Salsa become vigilant in the public eye. Its healing, creativity, nourishment, sacred blessings, and spiritual blessings reminds the Dominican Republic of those Blackened Beings. Blackness is not of shame, nor should be hidden. Afro-Dominican men don’t have to hide their feminine images, in order to move through the world and society. In fact, when they move through Merengue or Salsa, it is that Blackened feminine, within Dominican soils, which guides them. And of course, we cannot forget about his use of that Black American whisper, known as. . .JAZZ!
There is one man, from the Dominican Republic, one living legend, whose ability to present the aesthetics of Blackness’ shaping. Dancing and singing it for one section of the island, and performing it for the international scene. He was animated, vivacious, and rich in his musical storytelling of Merengue and Salsa. He was named Juan de Dios Ventura Soriano. Yet, the world came to know him as,
Watch his performances and you will observe how in tuned he was with his audience. Observing him over and over, and his repetition with his dancers, you can see how the rhythm moved him, and how he moved through the rhythm. Close your eyes. Allow your mind to wonder and flow into the storyline of Salsa and Merengue. Take a forward movement into the past. Like the authentic, culinary of the time, guide yourself to that time when the ingredients first came together to create these Dominican delicacies. What were the spices, ingredients, and cooking methodologies to create culinary stories in La Republica Dominicana? Furthermore, who were some of the primary chefs?
There were specific performances, by Johnny Ventura, which gave audiences unfolding stories of what it means to perform Salsa or Merengue. One of such presentations was during the 1984 Festival De Vina, and the performance of “Que Lo Pile Rebecca.” It was more than singing. In fact, it was theatrical. There were different elements in making the song come alive. From Johnny Vetura’s syncopated and intrinsic dances, with his back up singers, to the circling of the musicians around the stage. The vibrant and comedic personalities of some of the musicians conveyed the myriad personalities of Salsa and Merengue. When people birthed from the musicality of a particular land, dance and move in the way of that land, there is something about it, which personifies the land. Through Johnny Ventura’s performances, the music 🎶🎶 has become human. It embraces and circles itself around the human mystique. In fact, it is enthralled by it.
Going back to Johnny Ventura, and his performance with his backup singers, you feel how in sync, in tune, and intertwined they are with each other. Their fast-paced movements and rhythms do not hinder any barriers. In actuality, calling them “backup” singers is not even a practical term for them. There is a different vibe, encircling them. They may be Johnny Ventura’s support system, but they, too, have their own form of magic. They, too, add coloring to the stage. When the three of them come together, the audience observes the Universe coming to work. They just glide right into each other’s beat. It doesn’t matter how rapid or slow they are. When observing their trajectory together, there is an alignment which solidifies their performance bond, as brothers in song and dance. In fact, its the true nature of how the lead singer, aligns oneself with those also occupying the spacing.
Further fascination illustrates how the singers are not simply singing with him. While dancing with him, they are also beside him. The fact that their style is positioned to the right of them somehow brings out the energy of the concerts, and the songs they sing.
Not only was Johnny Ventura a singer, but he also entered into the world of politics. While many people may find entertainment and politics conflicting, the fact remains that there can be a medium. Those entertainers and musicians, deciding to enter into politics are not always taken seriously. Nevertheless, there is something about those, who wish to move through this particular atmosphere; while coming from an entertainment background. Perhaps, it should be a requirement that every politician have studied the performing and visual arts, prior to entering into politics. After all, it is through these realms, where humanity is most expressed. It is here where sensitivity is experienced. From 1994-1998, Johnny Venture became Vicemayor of Santo Domingo. Shortly after, from 1998-2002, Ventura became the Mayor of Santo Domingo. Why politics? What makes him so different?
One of the fascinating attributes of being an artist, performer, musician, or entertainer for your nation, is that you understand how your gift impact the masses. Concert halls or venues become spaces of knowledge. You understand the pains, concerns, and joys of your audience, through the music. How they react to you. How they react to the music. That’s the fascinating endeavor. You sway forward into their reality. In turn, it draws you closer to them. Even if you have ventured to a different audience, to an international audience, you still gain a taste of the people; their desires for life to be. Why wouldn’t Senor Johnny Ventura understand this in the political realm? There is a rhythm to this. Once you study the realm of politics, and are serious in this endeavor, you become knowledgeable of the system. Nevertheless, that doesn’t mean you understand the local populations. Neither does it translate into being sympathetic, or having gentility for the masses of people. Yet, if you have been immersed with the arts, it creates a special level of intimacy with the people of any land. You see their humanity, because you have performed for it. Not every performer/entertainer has this dynamic. Nevertheless, for Juan de Dios Ventura Soriano, entertainment and politics became complements of each other. Perhaps, his music 🎶 brought a more colorful side to the realm of politics; forcing immersion into the humanity, within.
Moving through the remedies of Johnny Ventura’s presence, there was a nutritious and awakened element to his performances. No matter how you felt when going into his concerts, there is an illumination of one’s Spirit, when seeing Johnny Ventura y su Combo Show. One of the most favorable elements in observing his performances, was knowing that music 🎶 could become human.
Listening, and observing, the vivacity of Combo Show, it truly is a show-a magic show! The performances are presented with a 3-D euphoria. Its provides the slight immersion of theater with music. Its insightful to see. In addition, it instills beauty within the human Spirit. Once the music plays, once the beat is created, there is a shaking in the Universe. There is a silent shaking in the atmosphere. You have no choice, but to jump into the entertainment cloud; allowing yourself to be colored, in the process. That’s one of the most dynamic elements of being entertained by Latin Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award Winner, JOHNNY VENTURA! Not only did he ensure that you “jump” in, he also made sure that you swayed your way out. Swaying your very rhythm into the scents of Merengue and Salsa tunes. It becomes as natural as drinking water. Even if you are not Dominican (even if you are not from the Spanish-speaking world), you cannot escape the atmosphere of celebration. You cannot deny the intensity of feeling alive on the mainland. Once you gain a tastes for the vibe of Salsa and Merengue life, you will always gain an urge to taste, just a little more!
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