Today I'd like to show you some folk music and dances from Salento, in southern Italy. First of all: where is it? How does it look like?
Now, listen Salento folk music and look traditional dance: it's the pizzica (also known as taranta). Historically, it wasn't just a dance with festive and social aims, but it was a form of popular cure for poisonous spiders' bites (in fact, the word 'pizzica' comes from the verb 'pizzicare', which means to bite; and 'taranta' comes from 'tarantola', which is a kind of spider). Of course, the lyrics aren't in Italian, but in Salentino language.
These folk songs and dances are nowadays very popular. Since 1998, for example, a very important international festival is organized every summer: la Notte della Taranta. Of course, tradition is often merged with influences from other Mediterranean cultures and with modern music, as you can see in the following videos.
Moreover, it's interesting to see that in Salento lives also a Greek minority, settled in an area named Grecìa Salentina, and who speaks a form of modern Greek, named Griko. Here you can listen one of the best known songs in Griko.