new city music conf day two-146 On Wednesday afternoon in the Skills sessions,  Dr Leo Sanchez blew us all away with his introduction to Latin American and Carribean rhythms.  As Jim Ward played the keys, Dr. Leo accompanied on bass or congas and gave us a true master class.  I don't think anyone there could imagine taking these rhythms back to our churches.  We are very grateful that Dr Leo transcribed all the music that was played and sent us those files.  



Dear colleagues,

Below are the links to representative Latin American & Caribbean rhythms. These links should take you to the sanchezl scores section of  I do not think that you have to sign up to hear the scores. However, if you do have to sign up, you can do so for free so that you can hear the samples. 

 The samples are presented in the order they were demonstrated at the NCF Music Conference 2011. Most of these links offer samples, not complete songs. The idea is to give you a sense of the basic rhythms. Once you get to the sample scores I have arranged, you should be able to play them on the computer as a whole piece (with all the instruments) or by section (say, for example, if you want to focus on the percussion part). Play around with the program. You'll figure it out. 

I also think you can print these samples if that is helpful to you. The percussion part is done on drums since the free version of Noteflight does not include Latin percussion choices such as bombo leguero (for South American music) or congas, bongo, or guiro (for Caribbean music). Drum set players will need to creatively adapt these rhythms to their instruments, but knowledge of actual Latin percussion is recommended. I have added representative bass lines to the scores. Piano players can arrange and voice as they see fit, while keeping the basic rhythms suggested in place. Enjoy!

I hope these are helpful starting points for you as you find ways to introduce or expand your use of music from the Latino world in worship. May the Lord bless your musical journeys to His glory and the benefit of our neighbors—including the Latino neighbors in our midst.


Blessings in Christ.

Dr. Leo

Leopoldo A. Sánchez M., M.Div., Ph.D


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Mexican Waltz Sample

Mexican Corrido Sample

South American Zamba Sample

South American Chacarera Sample 

South American Aguinaldo Sample

Basic Clave Rhythm Samples

Caribbean Guaracha (salsa) Sample

Caribbean Merengue Sample