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Balearic Beat

Music Sound

Balearic Beat

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Balearic Beat is a style of electronic dance music that emerged in the late 1980s and was popular into the mid-1990s. The style was named for its popularity among European nightclub and beach rave patrons on the Balearic island of Ibiza, a popular tourist destination. Some dance music compilations referred to the style as "the sound of Ibiza," even though many other, more aggressive and upbeat forms of dance music could be heard on the island. Major artists credited with popularizing Balearic Beat include Soul II Soul and Enigma.

The Balearic Beat sound was initially typified by a distinctive, relatively heavy, slow (90–110 bpm), R&B-influenced beat consisting of bass drum, snare, and hi-hats (often produced with a Roland TR-909 drum machine) programmed in certain laid-back, swing-beat patterns; plus soul, Latin, African, funk, and dub affectations; and production techniques borrowed from other styles of dance music that were popular at the time. Vocals were sometimes present, but much of the music was instrumental. The sounds of acoustic instruments such as guitar and piano were sometimes incorporated into Balearic Beat.

UK disc jockeys Paul Oakenfold and Danny Rampling are commonly credited with having "discovered" Balearic Beat in 1986 while on holiday in Ibiza. Reportedly, they were introduced to the music at Amnesia, an Ibizan nightclub, by DJ Alfredo from Argentina, who had a residency there.

Having been primarily associated with a particular percussion pattern that eventually fell out of vogue, the style eventually faded from prominence, and its repertoire was subsumed by the more general "chill out" and "downtempo" genres.

Ibiza is still considered by some to have its own 'sound,' however. Compilations such as Global Lounge Sessions: The Balearic Sound of Ibiza, released in 2002, continue to be released. These generally feature house music and certain downtempo selections, not the old style of Balearic Beat, per se. Some prefer to use the term more generally, however, to apply to all of these styles.

A less common synonym for Balearic Beat is Balearic House.

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Music Sound, v. 2.0, by MultiMedia

This guide is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia.