This Interactive Map Shows Palo Music Across The Dominican Republic
Written by: Gerald Lopez
Palos in our country is often very underrepresented in some very key regions such as my hometown of San Francisco de Macorís.Often my own family’s Palo festivities were very much absent in much of the popular Palos repertoire. I did this because I’ve always wanted to create a map of Palos across the DR to highlight the very important genre across the country. Many researchers only focus on the South-West of the Dominican Republic, While the East and North are largely ignored. I created over a period of time to show how widespread Palos are. Also so we can see the strong differences and similarities that exist around the Dominican Republic, many times showcasing different African ethnic influences of which I speak below, in things like roping, rhythms, dances, etc.
I hope you enjoy this map, which will never be complete but rather an open ongoing project that will continue growing while more and more Fiestas de Palo videos are uploaded to YouTube. But for now, I did try to ensure that it gives a good overview of the regional differences and the differences between rural towns within certain regions.
Palos, Quijombos, Juambeses, Atabels, etc are musical styles deeply tied to our roots, with ancient foundations. They are distributed across the coast of the Dominican Republic. These are based on a mixture of mainly influences from across different African tribes (ethnic groups), which form this music style almost in its entirety, except some indigenous and European elements which exist in regions where these two other influences were stronger.