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La Bamba is a classic example of the son jarocho musical style, which originated in the Mexican state of Veracruz and combines Spanish, indigenous, and African musical elements. The song is typically played on one or two Arpa jarochas (harps) along with guitar relatives the jarana jarocha and the requinto jarocho. Lyrics to the song vary greatly, as performers often improvise verses while performing. However, versions such as those by musical groups Mariachi Vargas de Tecalitlan and Los Pregoneros del Puerto have survived because of the artists' popularity. The traditional aspect of "La Bamba" lies in the tune, which remains almost the same through most versions. The name of the dance, which has no direct English translation, is presumably connected with the Spanish verb "bambolear", meaning "to shake" or perhaps "to stomp". Or the name may perhaps be derived from the Kimbundu word "mbamba" meaning "master" as in someone who does something adeptly or skillfully.