mam·​bo | \ ˈmäm-(ˌ)bō How to pronounce mambo (audio) \
plural mambos

Definition of mambo

: a ballroom dance of Cuban origin that resembles the rumba and the cha-cha also : the music for this dance

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Other Words from mambo

mambo intransitive verb

Examples of mambo in a Sentence

They learned to dance the mambo. The band played a mambo.
Recent Examples on the Web The wide-ranging writings explore five volumes of music -- albums recorded from 1956 to 1964 in a collection of Cuban music such as big band son montuno, Afro-Cuban rumba, mambo, cha-cha-chá and country acoustic guajira music. Justino Aguila, Billboard, "Grammy Watch: Meet The Best Album Notes Nominees Who Bested J.Lo, Among Other Pop Stars," 26 Nov. 2019 There’s also a beginner Latin group class that covers cha cha, mambo, merengue, rumba, salsa, swing, bolero, samba and hustle. Sarah Kuta, The Know, "Swing, salsa and samba: 7 spots where you can learn to dance on the Front Range," 28 Sep. 2019 Think of it as sparkling glam-rap mambo funk, if that helps. John Adamian,, "Funk pop’s Cimafunk returning to Real Art Ways for free concert," 14 Aug. 2019 Arsenio Rodriguez Project: Cuban composer and tres master Arsenio Rodriguez was a foundational figure in son and mambo who reshaped the Havana music scene in the 1940s. Andrew Gilbert, The Mercury News, "10 top acts highlight the 30th San Jose Jazz summer fest," 30 July 2019 Orquesta Akokán is an ensemble of mambo reminiscent of Benny Moré, Pérez Prado and Banda Gigante of the 1940s and ’50s. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Golf tournament raises money for The Elizabeth Hospice," 24 June 2019 DJ Markoz Project directed the dance floor with salsa, merengue, mambo and more. Joey Guerra, Houston Chronicle, "Rumba with Pride celebrates Houston's Latin LGBT community," 7 June 2019 These Havana natives perform fluent, easy mambo and son cubano that transports listeners to not just another place, but another time. New York Times, "13 Pop, Rock and Jazz Concerts to Check Out in N.Y.C. This Weekend," 5 July 2018 In the Caribbean, drums were also used in religious rituals, which evolved into dance rhythms, like the Cuban son, mambo, chachacha and danzón. Deborah Ramírez, miamiherald, "Eddie Palmieri brings his 'Wisdom' to Miami's Olympia Theater | Miami Herald," 24 May 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'mambo.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of mambo

1946, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for mambo

American Spanish

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Time Traveler for mambo

Time Traveler

The first known use of mambo was in 1946

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Statistics for mambo

Cite this Entry

“Mambo.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 18 Feb. 2020.

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More Definitions for mambo


How to pronounce mambo (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of mambo

: a lively dance originally from Cuba
: the music for the mambo

More from Merriam-Webster on mambo

Spanish Central: Translation of mambo

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