Situé à l’arrière du cerveau, le cortex visuel, peinard, se délecte du spectacle de celle qui me suit dans la rue, tandis que moi je me concentre pour éviter les gens. Voilà que je m’engueule avec lui, envoie l’image mec, envoie l’image, mais l’autre égoïste ricane et me nargue, tu verrais sa paire, c’est du sérieux.J’ai dans ma tête un stock de belles images que je n’ai jamais vu.

One of the few things that I disdained while filming the movie was the makeup used to paint the Puerto Ricans the same color. We Sharks were all the same homogenous brown! Our gang, including me, was a uniform tobacco color, and that was just plain wrong and inaccurate. Puerto Ricans, with their varied genetic ancestry – Spanish, Taino Indian, Black, Dutch – are born with a broad palette of skin colors, from outright white to true black.
—  Rita Moreno on filming West Side Story in her memoir Rita Moreno

Bomba is an Afro-Puerto Rican folkloric music style developed throughout the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries by west African slaves brought to the island by the Spanish. It is a communal activity that still thrives in its traditional centers of Loíza, Santurce, Mayagüez, Ponce, and New York City. The traditional musical style has been diffused throughout the United States following the Puerto Rican Diaspora, especially in New York, New Jersey, Chicago, California, and Florida. It also became increasingly popular in Peru, Panama, Colombia, Venezuela and Brazil, and has largely influenced Afro-Latino music styles within these countries.

More than just a genre of music, it’s most defining characteristic is the encounter and creative relationship between dancers, percussionists, and singers. Dance is an integral part of the music. It is popularly described as a challenge/connection, or an art of “call and answer,” in which two or more drums follow the rhythms and moves of the dancers. The challenge requires great physical shape and usually continues until either the drummer or the dancer discontinues.

There are several styles of bomba, and the popularity of these styles varies by region. There are three basic rhythms, as well as many others that are mainly variations of these: Yubá, Sicá and Holandés. Other styles include Cuembé, Bámbula, Cocobalé, and Hoyomula.

As some of you may know, I’m Puerto Rican. So today (June 8) is a pretty big day for me and Puerto Ricans everywhere. In honor of that, I’ve decided to put together a (admittedly not very good) masterlist of various notable Puerto Ricans and information about them, as well as some forms of media created by, and/or featuring Puerto Ricans (bolded means the person/thing is a favorite of mine). Most of these links are to Wikipedia articles for the sake of my time and sanity, but I greatly encourage you to seek out more information about these wonderful people! So without further ado, here goes:





Movies/TV Shows (that feature or are about Puerto Ricans)

Musicians (I took the liberty of linking to my favorite songs by some of the artists, just for fun)

Historical Taíno Figures


Some More Information

Also, why not take a trip down to the Nuyorican Poets Cafe or El Museo del Barrio to learn a little more about Puerto Rican history and culture (NYC specific)