Archive for the ‘cumbia’ Category

Mosaico de Gaitas

February 5, 2011 Leave a comment

Just a quick little public service announcement here. The wonderful Soundway Records is releasing a few limited box-set singles at the end of the month and I couldn’t be more excited. Whether it’s Thailand, Nigeria, Panama or Colombia, Soundway is there digging up the best music and history they can find. Everything this label has done has been beautifully restored and packaged in fantastic packinging. Not just a reissue label, but an archival, documentarian label.

This particular video is from the 3×7″  boxset of Lucho Bermúdez y Su Orchestra, the Colombian musical mastermind. This guy was the Colombian Stan Kenton, just playing heavy, beautiful arrangements. The sound quality for the video is a bit off, but it’s the quality of the music performance is worth putting up with a little sound issues. The third and fourth songs are absolutely heavy, but unfortunately I don’t think they’re on the 7″ series.

If you enjoy this, check out one of my favorite blogs on the internet, Global Groove for a download of one of Lucho’s great albums from the late 50s/early 60s.

Categories: colombia, cumbia, video

Cumbias Para Bailar

July 8, 2010 1 comment

Orquesta Del Chamaco Avila con Carlos Oropeza – Cumbias Para Bailar (Discos Corona, 196?)

It’s not really right to call this a cumbia record, but rather an American re-interpretation of cumbia. There is no information online about Chamaco Avila nor the Carlos Oropeza featured on this record. Discos Corona was an LA based record label that released quite a few Latin-themed records, many of them Mariachi or Boleros. I found THIS website that lists a pretty complete discography (minus the record here, but I’m sending this link asap) and as you can tell a lot of it is exotica compilation type stuff that seems to have been very popular with record labels in the 50s and 60s.

As it’s an American production there is a heavy cha-cha influence throughout the record, with loads of brass and lots of bright organ. The orchestra can’t be very big, it’s definitely only a few horns, the organ, a conguero, a drummer and some light work on the timbales. The fact that it’s a small group is a huge plus because the groove is right in front and not buried underneath a ton of other instruments – the drumming is tight and loud, the organ is pretty funky and the horns only pop when they need to.

Overall, this is a great record, with some really fiery grooves that will put a smile on your face and get you dancing. Tracks like “Simon,” “Cumbiamberita,” and “Los Soldados” are heavy hitters with a lot of swing. If you’ve heard my EN VIVO DESDE EL OTRO LADO mix you’re already aware of the dancefloor bomb that is “Canta Pescador,” a heavy hitting cumbia-track that is led by the summer-sweet organ work of Carlos Oropeza. I’m listening to it right now and am having trouble sitting still! “Borrachera” is another great track as it storms in with these salsa-influenced heavy horns, and organ that wont quit – really, a late-night track that will seal the deal every time. However, there are a couple of sleepers on here where the cha-cha just gets a little redundant or the organ comes off a little cheesy, but that’s just my taste and you may be more interested the tracks that I dismissed.

I’m proud to say that I present to you, dear reader, a record that is neither found online nor is there any mention of the record or the players. And as I always say, if it’s not available through Google it doesn’t exist. Well, I guess I just gave birth to a 40+ year old cumbia record!

Link is in the commmmmmments.

Categories: 1960s, cumbia

La Mara Tomaza

May 5, 2010 Leave a comment
So, I have this thing that when I find new music, I HAVE to do hours of re search and find out everything I can about it. This translates to a new blog entry! Thinking about my workload tomorrow, I should definitely be asleep, but why should I sleep when I could be listening to El Hijo De La Cumbia?

El Hijo De La Cumbia is a young Argentine producer/DJ who commands prolific knowledge over the vast extent of cumbia regardless of time or geography (cumbia sounds different in every region and have obviously evolved over time). He is dubbed the “Son of Cumbia,” and this moniker suits him well as he is the product of hundreds of generations of cumbia before him, but his take on modern cumbia will make him the Father of nueva cumbia, or cumbia new roots. Cumbia has a deep regional characteristic, for example in Colombia the style is strictly percussion and vocals and sometimes accordion, and in his present day Argentina cumbia is of the light-hearted and somewhat goofy villera style. He is able to break away from the norms of cumbia and incorporates elements of instrumental hiphop, dub and dancehall, with a heavy amount of cumbia samples. The end product is nueva-cumbia, a high energy, psychedelic dance groove with lots of spaced-out accordion and obligatory cuts of cumbieros of yesteryear shouting in glee.

He has out a mix-tape and a few appearances on modern cumbia/dance compilations as well as his first full length, Freestyle De Ritmos which was released by the Spanish label, Soot Records, in 2008. This video is from the Freestyle album, but was released in February so I’m not sure if it’s indicative of something new to come? Either way, I love this video for being everything that a typical indie-hiphop video is: tour of the hood (in Mexico City) with lots of local color, a trip to the record store and the necessary shot of gems, and then DJing the party. Great sound, hope to hear a lot more from him in the future. Hit up his myspace page and check out “Soy El Control,” and tell me that track wont be making your trunk rattle for the next week. Also, check out the second video which has a live in the studio version of “Soy El Control” with his “band.” CUUUUUUUUMBIIIIIAAAAAAAAAAA!

Categories: 2010, argentina, cumbia, video