by Roy Kasten
"Bosforus" by the Reventones "'Bosforus" is composed in the rumba flamenca style. It is drawing from Middle Eastern sounds, the oud in particular. The scraping sound is a flamenco technique, it's called tapao, scraping the strings as a percussive element. It's used in rumba and flamenco pieces. You're using the guitar as a straight percussion instrument; you're not indicating any harmony. I wrote it a few years ago: I came up with the melody, most of the riffs, but I didn't have it put together. I liked it, but it took three years to put a form to it, to have a beginning, middle and an end.
"I've always liked the more Arabic sounding pieces in flamenco, the Moorish influences. To me [this song] always sounded like something you'd hear in Turkey. It has nothing to do with Turkish music, but it's the feel of it. That's why I called it 'Bosforus,' which is the waterway that divides the East from the West [commonly spelled as 'Bosphorus']. Coincidentally I'm going to stay with some friends on the Bosphorus for ten days in January."