The origin of salsa?

A question from Yahoo! Answers:

When did salsa originated, during the 1930s or the 1970s?

It depends on how you define salsa.

Some say that salsa is music that celebrates spice in all things from food to life in general, and so derive the origin of salsa from 1930s, when Cuban artist Ignacio Piñerio wrote “Échale Salsita”, which was dedicated to an old black man who sold spicy sausages on Central Road in Matanzas.

Others say that salsa is the music of the Latino identity movement in the U.S. and thus trace its origins to the 1970s New York City. The term was reportedly coined by young musicians like Hector Lavoe, Larry Harlow, Ray Beratto, Willie Colon and popularized by Izzy Sanabria, owner of the Latin New York magazine, and Jerry Massuci, owner of Fania Records.

Yet others note that salsa only infiltrated the mainstream in 1970s; in NYC’s Puerto Rican community, it was played since at least 1950.

Finally, some people (including Celia Cruz and Tito Puente) have said that there is no such style as salsa; “salsa” is a collective name given by stupid people who are too tone-deaf to know the difference to several distinct Cuban (son, son montuno, rumba, cha cha cha, conga, mambo, etc.) and Puerto Rican (bomba and plena) styles.

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