Origin and History of Bachata

We all know Bachata, but do we all really know the origin of Bachata?

If you are reading this article, you may know that the origin of this Latin musical genre is located in the Dominican Republic. So far we have not said anything new, but did you know that the bachata’s origin was marked by contempt, repudiation and repression? Keep reading and you will find details that will surprise you.

You can also listen to best 2018 bachatas using this link so you can see the great evolution that this genre has experienced since its origin.


Bachata emerged during the sixties (mid-twentieth century) in the urban marginality of the poorest neighborhoods of the Dominican Republic, in bars and brothels. Because of that, at the beginning it was rejected by the highest social classes of that time, to such an extent that it was considered vulgar, rustic and without style.

Before the appearance of this genre, the name “bachata” symbolized the gathering of friends or family that were organized in the Dominican Republic when they congregated in their houses courtyard to make a barbecue or to talk . Each of them took an instrument and began to play. That is, it was synonymous with party, music, friends, family, dance and revelry .

Later, this genre would adopt the name of bachata since it was in these meetings of friends and families where it all began.


The origin of bachata was marked by its roots in the boleros, in some African rhythms and in the “son cubano”.

It is calculated that it started in the moment when the Latin American bolero entered the Dominican Republic (between the thirties and fifties). Although the appearance was anonymous and surprising.

In the last decade the classic bolero maracas were replaced by a metal instrument called güira and guitars were added, which led to people coining the bachata as a “guitar bolero”.


Instrumento Güira

In later decades, bachata was spreading but only through the bars of Santo Domingo, as it was still considered miserable music in the high cradles of society . But over the years and with the new composers, the bachata was conquering the highest social classes. To the point of becoming a benchmark and neglecting that negative connotation it had at the beginning.


Bachata history and bachata origin

First bachata singers at its beginning

Among the first bachata performers are Tommy Figueroa, Rafael Encarnación, José Manuel Calderón, Leonardo Paniagua . The last one is considered by many followers as bachata’s father because he was the forerunner of the first recordings of this musical genre, including “borracho de amor” and “condena” .

To this list of pioneers we must add Rafael Encarnación , who managed to place this rhythm among the highest circles of society in the seventies. His most successful subjects were «Muero contigo», «Ya es muy tarde», «Yo sería capaz», «Esclavo de tu amor» and «No lo niegues»,

We can not forget Luis Segura for his extensive career and for the large number of songs he performed and especially because due to his song “Pena” (recorded in 1982) he managed to break with all those negative connotations that bachata had at that time and popularized this rhythm in the middle and upper social classes. For all of it, he was one of the most outstanding artists of the 20th century.


At the beginning of the 1990s, bachata made a qualitative leap with respect to the road it had traveled until then. The songs became more elaborate in terms of musicality and lyrics . This is where Juan Luis Guerra came into play with his work “Bachata Rosa”, which was a great hit by getting a record of sales in the Dominican Republic. A large number of sales were also achieved in Spain, Colombia, Venezuela, Ecuado, Mexico, United States …


The biggest leap in the history of bachata was achieved by the Tinelleres group in 1994 , which marked a before and after in this great musical genre. This group consisting of three cousins from the Bronx neighborhood of New York marked the path for many other artists. Since they understood the great projection that bachata could have on the dance floors.
This group in 1999 changed its name to one we all know, Aventura . In addition to the name they added two new members who were also cousins. The five members were Anthony Santos “Romeo”, Judy Santos, Henry Santos, Max Santos and Lenny Santos.
In 2002 they released the album, We Broke The Rules , with the song Obsesión . This song was number one in many countries and allowed to reach a new level of popularity for bachata worldwide.



Currently, the great artists who continue to further enlarge bachata are Romeo Santos > (In 2011 Anthony Santos announced the separation of Aventura, Prince Royce, Dani J, Daniel Santa Cruz, Vicky Corbacho, Ephrem J and many others.
A new bachata trend is also emerging, which draws on versioning commercial songs by introducing the rhythm of bachata. Some of these examples can be: felices los 4, una lady como tu, all of me, los rebujitos chayanne, CNCO. Here you can find the best bachata remixes in 2018 .



What do you think of bachata origin?

Leave us your comments about the history of bachata and its origin. Did you know it? Or, were you surprised that the origin of bachata was so complicated in its beginning? Did you know the country of origin of bachata?

In addition to knowing the origin of bachata music, you can discover:


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