Rumba is a secular genre of Cuban music involving dance and song. It originated in the northern regions of Cuba in urban Havana and Matanzas, during the late 19th century, it is based on African music and dance traditions, namely Abakuá and yuka, as well as the Spanish-based coros de clave. According to Argeliers León, rumba is one of the major "genre complexes" of Cuban music, the term rumba complex is now used by musicologists; this complex encompasses the three traditional forms of rumba, as well as their contemporary derivatives and other minor styles. Traditionally performed by poor workers of African descent in streets and solares, rumba remains one of Cuba's most characteristic forms of music and dance. Vocal improvisation, elaborate dancing and polyrhythmic drumming are the key components of all rumba styles. Cajones were used as drums until the early 20th century. During the genre's recorded history, which began in the 1940s, there have been numerous successful rumba bands such as Los Papines, Los Muñequitos de Matanzas, Clave y Guaguancó, AfroCuba de Matanzas and Yoruba Andabo.
Since its early days, the genre's popularity has been confined to Cuba, although its legacy has reached well beyond the island. In the United States it gave its name to the so-called "ballroom rumba" or rhumba, in Africa soukous is referred to as "Congolese rumba", its influence in Spain is testified by rumba flamenca and derivatives such as Catalan rumba. The origin of the term rumba remains unknown and no etymological information is provided by the Diccionario de la lengua española. According to Pascual and Coromines, the word derives from "rumbo", meaning "uproar" and "the course of a ship", which itself may derive from the word "rombo", a symbol used in compasses. In the 1978 documentary La rumba, directed by Óscar Valdés, it is stated that the term rumba originated in Spain to denote "all, held as frivolous", deriving from the term "mujeres de rumbo". However, in Cuba the term might have originated from a West African or Bantu language, due to its similarity to other Afro-Caribbean words such as tumba, macumba and tambó.
During the 19th century in Cuba in urban Havana and Matanzas, people of African descent used the word rumba as a synonym for party. According to Olavo Alén, in these areas " rumba ceased to be another word for party and took on the meaning both of a defined Cuban musical genre and of a specific form of dance." The terms rumbón and rumbantela are used to denote rumba performances in the streets. Many other terms have been used in Cuba to refer to parties, such as changüí, tumba, bembé, macumba and mambo. Due to its broad etymology, the term rumba retained a certain degree of polysemy. By the end of the 19th century, Cuban peasants began to perform rumbitas during their parties; these songs were in the form of urban guarachas, which had a binary meter in contrast to the ternary meter of traditional rural genres such as tonada and zapateo. In Cuban bufo theatre at the beginning of the 20th century, the guarachas that were sung at the end of the show were referred to as rumba final despite not sharing any musical similarities with actual rumba.
Rumba instrumentation has varied depending on the style and the availability of the instruments. The core instruments of any rumba ensemble are the claves, two hard wooden sticks that are struck against each other, the conga drums: quinto, tres dos, tumba or salidor. Other common instruments include a wooden cylinder. During the 1940s, the genre experienced a mutual influence with son cubano by Ignacio Piñeiro's Septeto Nacional and Arsenio Rodríguez's conjunto, which led to the incorporation of instruments such as the tres, the double bass, the trumpet and the piano, the removal of idiophone instruments. At the same time, Cuban big bands, in collaboration with musical artists such as Chano Pozo, began to include authentic rumbas among their dance pieces; the group AfroCuba de Matanzas, founded in 1957, added batá drums to the traditional rumba ensemble in their style, known as batá-rumba. More a cappella rumba has been performed by the Cuban ensemble Vocal Sampling, as heard in their song "Conga Yambumba".
Although rumba is played predominantly in binary meter, triple meter is present. In most rumba styles, such as yambú and guaguancó, duple pulse is primary and triple-pulse is secondary. In contrast, in the rural style columbia, triple pulse is the primary structure and duple pulse is secondary; this can be explained due to the "binarization" of African-based ternary rhythms. Both the claves and the quinto are responsible for establishing the rhythm. Subsequently, the other instruments play their parts supporting the lead drum. Rhythmically, rumba is based on the five-stroke guide pattern called clave and the inherent structure it conveys. Yambú and guaguancó songs begin with the soloist singing a melody with meaningless syllables, rather than with word-based lyrics; this introductory part i
Explorations in Afro-Cuban Dance and Drum
The annual Explorations in Afro-Cuban Dance & Drum workshops are hosted by the Humboldt State University Office of Extended Education in Arcata, California. The classes focus on Afro-Cuban folkloric song and percussion. "Since 1996 local music teacher/musician Howie Kaufman has led Explorations in Afro-Cuban Dance and Drum, a workshop series at HSU that brings teachers and students from far and wide. Passion for the clave rhythm led some dedicated Humboldters to find ways around the U. S. blockade of the Caribbean island and bring Cuban music and musicians here."—Doran. Despite the United States embargo against Cuba, a slight relaxation allowed the Afro-Cuban folkloric group Los Muñequitos de Matanzas to tour the United States in 1992; the tour initiated a period of relaxation in relations between the United States and Cuba, during the presidency of Bill Clinton. There were more cultural exchanges between the two countries during the Clinton Administration, than at any other time since the beginning of the embargo in 1960.
The last time relations had been relaxed, was in 1977, during the presidency of Jimmy Carter. The 1992 Muñequitos tour established the small California college town of Arcata as a preferable venue for touring Cuban groups. Los Muñequitos performed, gave dance and drum classes in Arcata in 1992, 1994, 1998. During the 1990s more Cuban music and dance groups performed in Humboldt County than in any other rural county in the United States. Beginning in 1996, Humboldt State University invited touring Cuban folkloric masters to teach at their Explorations workshop; the University obtained visas for Cuban teachers, brought them directly from the island to the workshop. After the September 11 attacks of 2001, visas for Cuban teachers were unattainable. Although there is no evidence that Cuba was involved in any way with the attacks, Cuba is still technically one of four countries designated as a State Sponsors of Terrorism by the United States Department of State. Relations between the United States and Cuba remained chilly throughout the presidency of George W. Bush.
In the post-9/11 period, the University turned to hiring Cuban folkloric masters residing in the U. S; the presidency of Barack Obama has seen a slight loosening in travel restrictions between the two countries. Los Muñequitos de Matanzas once again toured the United States in 2011. Muñequitos member Ana Perez was able to obtain a temporary visa, enabling her to remain in the United States and teach for several months. Perez taught at the 2011 Explorations workshop. Song classes occur in the evenings. Latin Beat Magazine states: "Classes are cumulative. Thus, participants are encouraged to attend the entire program."Lecture/demonstrations include "Cross-rhythm: The Underlying Structure of Afro-Cuban Dance and Drum," "Comparing the African and Cuban Bata Drums," "The Clave Matrix," "Haitiano History and Styles," "La Rumba Cubana: 150 Years of Identity and Resistance," and "Swing: The Elusive Feel." Each year the Humboldt State campus hosts the largest assemblage of Afro-Cuban folkloric dance and drum masters in the United States.
Faculty members have included: Francisco Aguabella, Carlos Aldama, Jesus Alfonso, Susana Arenas, Erick Barberia, Jose Francisco Barroso, Miguel Bernal, Toto Berriel, Roberto Borrell, Juan Brown, Luis Cepeda "Chichito," Jesus Diaz, Roman Diaz, Sonyalsi Feldman, Lazaro Galarraga, Gary Greenberg, Reynaldo Gonzalez, Alison Hong, Regino Jimenez, Howard Kaufman, Rogelio Kindelan, C. K. Ladzekpo, Mark Lamson, Silfredo La O Vico, Freila Merencio, Harold Muniz, Santiago Nani, David Penalosa, Ana Perez, Sandy Perez, Teresita Perez, Jose Cheo Rojas, John Santos, Michael Spiro, Chris Walker, Scott Wardinsky. Song instruction includes the Lucumí and Iyesá, Arará, rumba traditions. Styles of dance include Santería, Arará, rumba, in both the Havana and Matanzas styles, as well as "Haitiano" genres, salsa. Percussion instruction includes batá drums, conga drums, quinto and cajón; some instruction in Cuban popular styles of congas, timbales, drumset are offered. From Humboldt State University: "LEVEL 1: Requires little or no prior experience with Afro-Cuban dance styles.
LEVEL 2: Requires prior Afro-Cuban folkloric dance experience with the ability to keep up in a moderately fast paced environment. Participants must be: able to pick up moves and steps familiar with the bembé /güiro step familiar with the fundamental orishá steps LEVEL 3: Master class. For professional dancers and performers of Afro-Cuban folkloric dance. Requires mastery of the fundamental orishá steps, the ability to keep up in an fast-paced, high energy environment. Intended for those with many years of experience in Afro-Cuban dance"—Explorations. "LEVEL 1: Requires little or no prior experience with Afro-Cuban music or conga drumming techniques. LEVEL 2: Requires introductory knowledge of Afro-Cuban rhythms and some prior conga drumming instruction. Participants must demonstrate basic conga drum strokes and basic rhythmic independence Level 2 rhythms will be broken down and methodically. LEVEL 3: Rarticipants must demonstrate all Level 2 skills plus: Caja and supportive parts to bembé /agbe clear distinction of conga strokes and stick techniques an ability to pick up rhythms at a moderate pace LEVEL 4: Participants must demonstrate all level 3 skills plus: demonstrate supportive parts for guaguancó understand how all parts fit together be able to tap pulse or mainbeat with foot to be
Carlos Vidal Bolado
Carlos Vidal Bolado was a Cuban conga drummer and an original member of Machito and his Afro-Cubans. Vidal holds the double distinction of being the first to record authentic folkloric Cuban rumba and the first to play congas in Latin jazz. Carlos Vidal was one of a handful of Cuban congueros who came to the United States in the 1940s and 1950s. Other notable congueros who came to the U. S. during that time include Mongo Santamaria, Armando Peraza, Chano Pozo, Francisco Aguabella, Julito Collazo and Cándido Camero. Vidal arrived in the U. S. in 1943, before any of the other mentioned musicians. In 1948, Vidal led an unsuccessful revolt in Machito's Afro-Cubans. However, he failed to convince anyone except Andino to leave the Machito orchestra for better-paying job in Los Angeles. Vidal and Andino joined the Miguelito Valdés orchestra and traveled to Los Angeles, where Andino found that jobs were not all that plentiful. Images from the Library of Congress
A cajón is a box-shaped percussion instrument from Peru, played by slapping the front or rear faces with the hands, fingers, or sometimes implements such as brushes, mallets, or sticks. Cajones are played in Afro-Peruvian music, but has made its way into flamenco as well; the term cajón is applied to other box drums used in Latin American music, such as the Cuban cajón de rumba and the Mexican cajón de tapeo. Sheets of 0.5 to 0.75 inches thick wood are used for five sides of the box. A thinner sheet of plywood is nailed on as the sixth side, acts as the striking surface or head; the striking surface of the cajón drum is referred to as the tapa. A sound hole is cut on the back side; the modern cajón may have rubber feet, has several screws at the top for adjusting percussive timbre. The instruments were only wooden boxes, but now they may have several stretched cords pressed against the top for a buzz-like effect, resembling a snare drum--guitar strings, rattles or drum snares may serve this purpose.
Bells may be installed inside near the cords. The cajón is the most used Afro-Peruvian musical instrument since the late 16th century. Slaves of west and central African origin in the Americas are considered to be the source of the cajón drum; the instrument is common in musical performance throughout some of the Americas, the Philippines and Spain. The cajón was developed during the periods of slavery in coastal Peru; the instrument reached a peak in popularity by 1850, by the end of the 19th century cajón players were experimenting with the design of the instrument by bending some of the planks in the cajón's body to alter the instrument's patterns of sound vibration. After slavery the cajón was spread to a much larger audience including Criollos. Given that the cajón comes from slave musicians in the Spanish colonial Americas, there are two complementary origin theories for the instrument, it is possible that the drum is a direct descendant of a number of boxlike musical instruments from west and central Africa Angola, the Antilles.
These instruments were adapted by slaves from the Spanish shipping crates at their disposal. In port cities like Matanzas, codfish shipping crates and small dresser drawers became similar instruments. Peruvian musician and ethnomusicologist Susana Baca recounts her mother's story that the cajón originated as "the box of the people who carried fruit and worked in the ports," putting it down to play on whenever they had a moment. Another theory is that slaves used boxes as musical instruments to subvert Spanish colonial bans on music in predominantly African areas disguising their instruments. While early 20th-c versions of the festejo appeared to have been performed without the cajón due to the influence of Perú Negro, a musical ensemble founded in 1969, the cajón began to be more important than the guitar and, became "a new symbol of Peruvian blackness". Spanish flamenco guitar player Paco de Lucía brought a cajón to Spain to use it in his own music, after being impressed by the rhythmic possibilities of the instrument during a visit to Peru in 1978.
In 2001, the cajón was declared National Heritage by the Peruvian National Institute of Culture. In 2014, the Organization of American States declared the cajón an "Instrument of Peru for the Americas". In the 2000s, the cajón is heard extensively in Coastal Peruvian musical styles such as Tondero and Peruvian Waltz, Spanish modern Flamenco and certain styles of modern Cuban Rumba; the modern cajón is used to accompany a solo acoustic guitar or piano. The cajón is becoming popular in blues, rock, world music, etc; the cajón is used as a bass drum by bands instead of a full drum kit when performing in minimalist settings, as the cajón can serve as both a bass drum and a seat for the drummer. Though played by some bands in place of the bodhrán, the cajón has not become a popular instrument in the folk music of Ireland, where the quieter and higher-pitched bodhrán traditional frame drum serves the same purpose, has a unique playing style; the cajón features in some Breton music. The player sits astride the box.
The percussionist can play the sides with the top of their fingers for additional sounds. Some percussionists attach a bass drum pedal to the instrument, enabling them to play it with a single foot; the instrument has been played not only with hands, but with plastic and metal brushes, as used for drum kits. Another way of playing the cajón is to use an ordinary bass drum pedal, thus turning the cajón into an indirect percussion instrument which can be played with the feet; this enables the player to beat it just like a pedal-bass drum, thus leaving the hands free to play other instruments. On the other hand, it restricts the player's standard cajón-playing position, as when the cajón is placed on the ground, in the bass drum location, it is hard for the performer to slap it with her or his hands. Afro-Peruvian music Jawbone Festejo How to Build a Cajón
Eduardo "Eddie" Palmieri is a Grammy Award-winning pianist, bandleader and composer of Puerto Rican ancestry. He is the founder of the bands La Perfecta, La Perfecta II, Harlem River Drive. Palmieri's parents moved to New York from Ponce, Puerto Rico, in 1926, settled in the South Bronx, a Hispanic neighborhood. There, he and his elder brother, Charlie Palmieri, were born, he participated in many talent contests when he was eight years old. Palmieri continued his education in the city's public school system where he was exposed to music jazz, he performed at Carnegie Hall when he was 11 years old. His main influences were McCoy Tyner. Inspired by his older brother, he was determined to someday form his own band – something he achieved in 1950, when he was fourteen years old. During the 1950s, Palmieri played in various bands, including Tito Rodríguez's. In 1961, Palmieri founded the band Conjunto La Perfecta. Apart from the big bands, at the beginning of the decade the Charanga was the Latin dance craze.
Essential to the Charanga style is the five key wooden flute and at least two violins. Palmieri decided to replace the violins with two trombones for a heavier sound. Two key elements to the'Palmieri' sound were trombonists Barry Rogers and Brazilian-born José Rodrígues. Together they were responsible for many of the'head' arrangements, mambos and moñas that the band recorded. George Castro, Manny Oquendo, Tommy López and Dave Pérez rounded out the group. To this day, the group is known as one of the swingingest, most danceable and influential groups of that period. Palmieri experimented by including a touch of jazz in his recordings, incorporating a popular Cuban rhythm known as mozambique. Lo Que Traigo Es Sabroso and Mozambique are just two examples of his use of this rhythm. Seeking a bigger and punchier sound, Palmieri disbanded the band in 1968. In 1971, Palmieri recorded Vamonos Pa'l Monte with his brother Charlie at the organ; that same year he recorded Eddie Palmieri & Friends in Concert, At the University of Puerto Rico.
In 1975, Palmieri became the first Latin musician to win a Grammy Award for Best Latin Recording with The Sun of Latin Music (produced by Harvey Averne and. On July 21, 1979, he appeared at the Amandla Festival along with Bob Marley, Dick Gregory and Patti LaBelle, among others. In the 1980s, Ismael Quintana returned to the band, which included Cheo Feliciano. Palmieri won two Grammys for the recordings of Solito, he recorded the album La Verdad with salsa singer Tony Vega in 1987. Next year the happiness of his success was set back by the sudden death of Charlie. In the 1990s, Palmieri had participated in various concerts and recordings with the Fania All-Stars and the Tico All-Stars. In 1998, Palmieri received an honorary doctorate from the Berklee College of Music. In 2000, Palmieri announced his retirement from the world of music. However, he won two Grammys. Palmieri has won a total of 9 Grammy Awards in his career, most for his 2006 album Simpático. On November 6, 2004, Palmieri directed a "Big Band Tribute" to his late brother Charlie at Avery Hall at the Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts.
Palmieri's La Perfecta departed from the traditional Caribbean sources of salsa instrumentation by introducing a new stylistic device into the New York Latin sound. Their signature sound relied on two trombones and a flute instead of trumpets. On the liner notes of their first album, Eddie's brother Charlie dubbed this combination the'trombanga', referring to the trombones and the still popular charanga which featured the flute; the combination helped to give La Perfecta a rich and bold sound which contributed to Palmieri's success with his new band. The trombone-based sound was adopted by salsa band leaders Willie Colón and Manny Oquendo, among others. Palmieri formed La Perfecta II, with whom he recorded the CD Ritmo Caliente. On April 30, 2005, "Mi Día Bonito", a tribute to Eddie Palmieri celebrating his 50 years in the world of music, took place at the Rubén Rodríguez Coliseum in Bayamón, Puerto Rico; the event included the participation of Lalo Rodríguez, Ismael Quintana, Cheo Feliciano, La India, Hermán Olivera, Jerry Medina, Luis Vergara and Wichy Camacho.
In November and December 2005, Palmieri teamed up with longtime trumpeter and band member Brian Lynch to record the Artistshare CD release The Brian Lynch/Eddie Palmieri Project: Simpático. This CD and accompanying multimedia web site features music by an all-star roster of jazz and Latin jazz artists, including Phil Woods, Lila Downs, Donald Harrison, Conrad Herwig, Giovanni Hidalgo, Gregory Tardy, Mario Rivera, Boris Kozlov, Rubén Rodríguez, Luques Curtis, Robby Ameen, Dafnis Prieto, Pedro Martínez, Johnny Rivero, Edsel Gómez, Yosvany Terry. In 2007, the recording was awarded a Grammy as the best Latin Jazz Recording. Palmieri returned to the studio to record three songs for the soundtrack to Doin' it in the Park: Pickup Basketball NYC; the documentary, co-directed by Bobbito García and Kevin Couliau, e
Armando Peraza was a Latin jazz percussionist and a member of the rock band Santana. Peraza played congas and timbales. Born in Lawton Batista, Cuba in 1924, he was orphaned by age 7 and lived on the streets; when he was twelve, he supported himself by selling vegetables, coaching boxing, playing semi-pro baseball, becoming a loan shark. His music career began at seventeen when he heard at a baseball game that bandleader Alberto Ruiz was looking for a conga player. Ruiz's brother was on the same baseball team as Peraza. Despite the absence of experience in music, he won the audition, he left Cuba for Mexico in 1948 to tend to conga drummer Mongo Santamaría. They arrived in New York City in 1949. After playing in Machito's big band, Peraza was invited by Charlie Parker to participate in a recording session that included Buddy Rich, he recorded with Slim Gaillard in New York in November 1949 in a session that produced "Bongo City". He toured the U. S. with Gaillard's band until San Francisco. After a period in Mexico, where he recorded with Perez Prado and soundtracks for the Mexican movie industry, he returned to the U.
S. and settled in San Francisco. While on the West Coast, he worked with Dizzy Gillespie, toured extensively with Charles Mingus and Dexter Gordon, in California for Mexican farm workers with Puerto Rican actor and musician Tony Martinez. Armando led an Afro-Cuban dance review at the Cable Car Village club in San Francisco, attracting a clientele from Hollywood that included Errol Flynn, Marlon Brando, Rita Hayworth. In 1954, while in San Francisco with pianist Dave Brubeck, Peraza met Cal Tjader, Brubeck's drummer at the time. Jazz critic Leonard Feather recommended Peraza to Fantasy Records with Tjader to record an Afro-Cuban album; the result was Ritmo Caliente. He was introduced to British pianist George Shearing by bassist Al McKibbon, he spent the next twelve years with Shearing, a collaboration that put Peraza at the front of Afro-Cuban music. He emerged as a composer and recording twenty-one songs for Shearing, such as "Mambo in Chimes", "Mambo in Miami", "Ritmo Africano", "Armando's Hideaway", "This is Africa", "Estampa Cubana".
These recordings were during the mambo craze in the U. S. and the world. Peraza's technique and power as a hand drummer became a feature of Shearing's performances, he toured all over the world with Shearing, but it was in America that he experienced persistent and institutionalized racism. In Miami during dates with Shearing and Peggy Lee in 1959, Peraza and black members of the band were prohibited from staying at the same hotel as the white musicians. Shearing and Lee resolved the situation by threatening to quit the performance unless Peraza and the others were allowed to stay at their hotel. Shearing's was one of the first racially integrated jazz groups. While with Shearing, Peraza had opportunity to play with the classical symphonies of Boston, New York, Oklahoma City. In 1959, Peraza joined Mongo Santamaría for the Mongo album with conga drummer Francisco Aguabella, another contemporary and friend of Peraza. "Afro-Blue" became a jazz standard. The album combined with Yambo in the compilation Afro Roots in 1972.
In the 1960s, Peraza was a member of Cal Tjader's band for the next six years. He was encouraged to record in southern California by jazz drummer Shelly Manne. Peraza performed throughout the area at such venues as Shelly's Manne-Hole and The Lighthouse in Hermosa Beach. A highlight was performing with the Stan Kenton Band for the opening of the Hollywood Bowl. Through his friendship with Manne, he was introduced to Judy Garland, who hired Peraza to play in her orchestra for The Judy Garland Show, a television series that ran from 1963 to 1964. In the fall of 1964, he recorded the album Soul Sauce with Tjader; the single "Guachi Guaro" won a Grammy Award in 1965. Although Peraza preferred being a featured performer to leading, he did record one solo album, Wild Thing, for Skye, a label owned by Tjader, Gary McFarland, Gábor Szabó; the album featured performances by pianist Chick Corea, saxophonist Sadao Watanabe, flautist Johnny Pacheco. When rock music became popular in the 1960s, Peraza was the first Afro-Cuban percussionist to add conga drums to a rock track, notably on Harvey Mandel's Cristo Redentor album in 1968.
In January 1972, at the age of 47, Peraza joined the rock band Santana and influenced the band in melding Afro-Cuban, jazz and blues. Peraza remained with Carlos Santana for nearly twenty years and played to millions of people around the world, partnering with percussionists José Areas, Mingo Lewis, Raul Rekow, Orestes Vilató, he wrote or co-wrote sixteen songs recorded by Santana, such as "Gitano" from the album Amigos in which Peraza sang the lyrics. Peraza retired from Santana in 1990 at the age of 66, although traveled to Santiago de Chile for concert with Santana in 1992 in front of a crowd of over 100,000 people. In 2005 he appeared on a recording by John Santos, 20th Anniversary, which included "El Changüí de Peraza" with Peraza on bongos. In 2002, he returned to his first trip there in over fifty years. In July 2006, Peraza, at 82 years of age, made a rare appearance with Santana for a three show performance at the Montreux Jazz Festival in Switzerland; this was the first of a number of summer live appearances.
He appeared at the San José Jazz Festival in California with the Julius Melendez Latin Jazz Ensemble. He taught drum clinics in California with Raul Rekow and Karl Pe
Arcata Union Town or Union, is a city adjacent to the Arcata Bay portion of Humboldt Bay in Humboldt County, United States. At the 2010 census, Arcata's population was 17,231. Arcata, located 280 miles north of San Francisco, is home to Humboldt State University. Arcata is the location of the Arcata Field Office of the Federal Bureau of Land Management, responsible for the administration of natural resources and mineral programs, including the Headwaters Forest, on 200,000 acres of public land in Northwestern California. Arcata has been notably progressive in its political makeup, was the first city in the United States to elect a majority of its city council members from the Green Party; as a result of the progressive majority, Arcata capped the number of chain restaurants allowed in the city. Arcata was the first municipality to ban the growth of any type of Genetically Modified Organism within city limits, with exceptions for research and educational purposes. According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 11.0 square miles, of which 9.1 square miles is land and 1.9 square miles is water.
Arcata contains major shopping areas within the city. They include: the Downtown/Plaza Area and Valley West. There are additional named neighborhoods encompassed by the city: They include: Aldergrove, Arcata Bottoms, portions of Bayside, California Heights, the Creamery District, Fickle Hill, the Marsh District, Redwood Park, Sunny Brae and Westwood. Arcata has the Arcata Marsh, a preserve located on the City's bay shore. Arcata has a cool summer mediterranean climate, dominated by marine influences associated with Humboldt Bay and the Pacific Ocean. On average, Arcata experiences 40 to 50 inches of rain per year, though there is a short but pronounced dry season from June to September. Northerly winds keep the spring cool and create a coastal upwelling of deep, cold ocean water; this upwelling in turn results in foggy conditions throughout the summer, with high temperatures in the 50s and low 60s. Yet just a few miles inland the temperatures may fall. Winter high temperatures average in the low 40s with lows in the mid-30s to lower 40s.
Temperatures infrequently dip below 30 °F in the winter, nearly as infrequently climb above 72 °F in the summer and fall. Changing populations have happened in timber and mining towns in the American West as a result of boom and bust economic cycles; some towns decrease in population following a bust, while some, like Arcata, experience a change in demographics. In the case of Arcata, the peak and the bust were close due to Arcata's late entry into the timber industry, its domination by mechanization; the population of the city of Arcata was 3,729 during its peak 1950, when lumber was exported throughout the country and abroad. For the County of Humboldt, the age distribution for urban residents, which would include Arcata, had 23.7% of the population under the age of 15. Those that would be considered young workers made up 14% of the population. “Normal” aged workers made up 23.9% of the population. Older working age made up 19.4% of the population. Pre-retirement aged made up 9.7% of the population.
Those of retirement age made up 9.1% of the population. For Arcata those age 65 and older were 8.3% of the population in 1950, the median age was 29.4 years. After the bust, in 1955, the population of Arcata in 1960 was 5,235. In Arcata the population under the age of 15 was 28.1%. Those age 15–24 made up 22.8% of Arcata's population. Those age 25–39 made up 19.4% of the population. Those age 40–54 made up 16% of Arcata's population; those age 55–64 made up 6.7% of Arcata's population. Those age 65 and over made up 6.9% of Arcata's population. Overall, census data reflects a lowering in the age of the Arcata population, due to an influx of young workers, due to there not being enough time after the bust for older workers to leave, in the decade between 1950 and 1960, during which the timber industry peaked and busted; the 2010 United States Census reported that Arcata had a population of 17,231. The population density was 1,567.4 people per square mile. The racial makeup of Arcata was: 14,094 White, 2,000+ Hispanic or Latino, 1,135 from two or more races, 769 from other races, 454 Asian, 393 Native American, 351 African American, 35 Pacific Islander,The Census reported that 15,486 people lived in households, 1,745 lived in non-institutionalized group quarters, 0 were institutionalized.
There were 7,381 households, out of which 1,275 had children under the age of 18 living in them, 1,651 were opposite-sex married couples living together, 649 had a female householder with no husband present, 325 had a male householder with no wife present. There were 764 unmarried opposite-sex partnerships, 75 same-sex married couples or partnerships. 2,730 households were made up of individuals and 524 had someone living alone, 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.10. There were 2,625 families; the population dispersal was wit