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.
For those of you on the West Coast, unless you have been living under a Donald Trump size hair piece for the past 10 years, then you are already know that Afro-latin music in the US is experiencing una nueva onda/renaissance. Leading the way have been diverse inspiring groups such as La Santa Cecilia, Las Cafeteras, Los Rakas, Chicano Batman, Bang Data, Very Be Careful, Quita Penas, La Misa Negra, Buyepongo, Thee Commons and Soltron to name a few. In fact, it was last year back stage with Las Cafeteras where they said to us we had to check out this new band out of Kansas City called Making Movies (<<<<1 of best band-websites we’ve seen). “Huh??? K.C.???” was our collective thought bubble. But we did exactly that and partnered with them at our favorite Mission art gallery, Artillery. Well shit, there went another preconceived notion (see links below). This is why we insisted they come back to feature at our monthly. That month is April and we can’t wait to have them on stage to share their take on bi-national, bi-cultural, and all feel-good music WITH one of the best local instant party groups—Pasto Seco Band! If you don’t know about Pasto Seco yet, you probably haven’t been out drinking in the Bay Area enough.
Friday April 8th | Brick and Mortar Music Hall in San Francisco | $15 adv, $20 door, 18 and over
Arjuna and Jacobo host the 3rd episode of Pelanga en La Sala with special guest Adam Dunbar from Discos Alma. (note: episode #2 tragically perished with a faulty hard drive) Join the three as they explore the vibrant and often overlooked music of Panama with a few other Caribbean gems mixed in.
Here’s a killer record I picked up in Bogotá recently, a battle of heavyweights: salsa vs boleros!
(Or maybe I should say aslaS sv soreloB.)
I’m saving my favorite track off this record for the upcoming Pelanga: El Chino Latino compilation. Instead, I’ll let Roberto Blades’s horn section explain to you just how hard it is to move from the country to the concrete jungle.
I don’t know why a Panamanian is yelling the peruanísimo “Chim Pum Callao”, but I’m sure that a certain sector of the Pelanga readership will dig it.
Zoom into the back cover:
Our friend Sylvia (shoutout!) tells us that Treichville is a neigborhood of Abidjan. And yes, sure, the salsa craze hit West Africa hard. But there’s no way that a record called “La Verraquera! En Boleros: vs. Salsa.” was pressed in Cote D’Ivoire! (Especially when the “label”, Olympo, seems to have specialized in obscure rock in Spain.) Such is the Colombian obsession with African records, I guess.
Today, (6/25/10), the group stage of the World Cup concluded with 6.1 of the 7.1 Latin countries advancing to the final 16/octovos. (Yes the USA counts as .1 for having José Tores in their squad). If only Honduras could have squeaked their way in, but none the less this has been a magnificent showing for the rest of Latin America: Argentina, Brasil, Chile, Mexico, Paraguay and Uruguay. During the past week this song by El General has been in constant rotation in my headphones. Sorry Shakira, but this is still the greatest World Cup song of all time. Enjoy!
In 2014 we will likely see even a greater Latino/Carribean presence with Brazil being awarded an automatic place as hosts. Juancho y Papicultor already have their eyes on that extra spot for Peru and Colombia. And don’t forget La Copa América kickoffs in just 1 year! (July 3, 2011)