Day 2 of carnaval and I have to insist we head over to Panama, specifically the tiny town called Las Tablas where the famous battle takes place each year between the two queens representing each side of town, Calle Arriba and Calle Abajo. I love pretty much all carnaval music, but my favorites are folkloric like this record Carnaval En Las Tablas—something about it transports me right into the packed streets celebrating into the the early hours of the morning.
This week is the start of carnaval all over the Caribbean and Latin America so each day this week we’ll travel via vinyl to a different carnaval. Let’s kick it off in Barinquilla, Colombia with Lorenzo “Loncho” Romero who will have you ready to take your dancing and drinking to the streets.
Over the past few months a day doesn’t go by where wifey and I don’t mention how bad we need an island vacation. Due to work schedules we can’t go anywhere for awhile, but thankfully we got Antillean music to hold us over. Galaxy take me away.
Back in the day bands were always coming up with their own dances and rhythms that they hope would catch fire. In the early days of El Gran Combo they had something called Mazucamba. It’s a fun tune that starts out very danceable, but then get’s a little nuts when they virtually decide to switch the speed of your turntable up to 45rpm. Hold on.
It’s been over 24 hours since Vulture published their interview with the greatest living producer of modern music, Quincy Jones and I’m still tripping off what I read. If you haven’t read it yet, it’s by far the wildest Q&A your eyes will ever encounter. I’m not exaggerating even by the slightest. Quincy let’s loose like a cannon revealing shit I wasn’t at all prepared for. As a nod to this 80 year old legend letting loose here’s the track Hummin’ off the record Gula Matari that was referenced in the interview.
There’s lots of roads that lead one to purchasing a dusty old record from a bin of hundreds of others. For this LP by Los Cuñaos, I saw the cover of this viejo wearing shades playing a violin and I knew I had to take it home (Miami ✈ Oakland). Upon first listening I realized I purchased some contemporary Venezuelan folk music and was feeling like I came up short—until I reached the last song on side B—an absolute killer Joropo tune. Nothing sweeter than when the last track saves your record purchase.
Including the inside gatefold here as there’s always a decent chance someone responds with “Hey that’s my tio in my mom’s old apartment!”