Flamenco Palos

Tonás or cantes primitivos, the oldest and most rudimentary style of flamenco singing

Flamenco origin - Flamenco history - Flamenco roots - Flamenco art - The name Flamenco

Flamenco music is grouped into families of different music styles, also known as ‘palos’. This classification is based on the content of their lyrics or verses, their rhythm or compas, on their melodies and key or tonality. Some palos originate from certain provinces of Andalusia while others originated from outside the borders of Andalusia. Most flamenco music styles are based on a 12 beat rhythmic pattern, marked by accented claps. Other palos are founded exclusively on 4 beat patterns. For some specific flamenco styles, such as Seguiriya, flamenco artists are strictly bound to respect the specific style characteristics. Other flamenco styles like Bulerías offer more freedom of execution. 

Flamenco palos classifications:

Cante Flamenco Gitano - Gypsy styles

Original styles developed by the Gitanos, characterized by profound and deep vocals
Rhythm - Compás
Traditional Key
A cappella Tonas Free form -
A cappella Martinetes 12 beat
A cappella Debla Free form -
A cappella Carceleras Free form -
A cappella Saetas Free form -
A cappella Tona liviana 12 beat
A cappella Trilla or Trilleras Free form -
Soleares Solea 12 beat
E Phrygian
Soleares Solea por buleria 12 beat
A Phrygian
Soleares Bambera 12 beat
E Phrygian
Soleares Bulerias 12 beat
A, E, Em, A phrygian, E phrygian
Soleares Cana 12 beat
E Phrygian
Soleares Polo 12 beat
E Phrygian
Seguiriya Serrana 12 beat
 E Phrygian
Seguiriya Cabales 12 beat
Seguiriya Livianas 12 beat
E Phrygian
Seguiriya Seguiriya 12 beat
A Phrygian


Cante Flamenco Andaluz - Andalusian styles

Styles originated from Andalusian and Latin American folk songs, characterized by more refined vocals
rhythm - Compás
Traditional Key
Fandangos Fandangos  12 beat ternary E Phrygian
Fandangos Verdiales / Abandolaos  12 beat ternary E Phrygian
Fandangos Rondenas (fromRonda) Free form C# Phrygian
Fandangos Malaguenas (from Malaga) Free form E Phrygian
Fandangos Fandangos naturales  12 beat E Phrygian
Fandangos Granainas / Media granaina Free form B Phrygian
Fandangos Jaberas 12 beat B
Cantes de levante Tarantas Free form F# Phrygian
Cantes de levante Taranto   4 beat binary F# Phrygian
Cantes de levante Cartageneras (from Cartagena) Free form F# Phrygian
Cantes de levante Minera (Mining song) Free form G# Phrygian
Cantes de levante Murciana (from Murcia) Free form F# Phrygian
Cantes de levante Levantica Free form F# Phrygian
De ida y vuelta Colombiana  4 beat binary A,D
De ida y vuelta Guajiras 12 beat  A, D
De ida y vuelta Milonga  4 beat binary -
De ida y vuelta Vidalita 4 beat binary -
De ida y vuelta Rumbas 4 beat binary Am, Em A, and E
Tangos Tientos  4 beat binary A Phrygian
Tangos Tangos  4 beat binary A, E, A Phrygian
Tangos Tanguillos  4 beat binary A, E
Tangos Farruca 4 beat binary Am
Tangos Garrotin  4 beat binary C, A
Tangos Marianas 4 beat binary A Phrygian, E Phrygian
Cantinas Caracoles 12 beat C
Cantinas Mirabras  12 beat Am, Em, A, E
Cantinas Romeras (Pilgrim songs) 12 beat E
Cantinas Alegrias 12 beat A
Cantes Aflamencados Zambras 4 beat binary Am, E Phrygian, Dm
Cantes Aflamencados Nanas Free form -
Cantes Aflamencados Campanilleros 12 beat Am
Cantes Aflamencados Sevillanas (from Seville) 12 beat ternary Any key