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Thursday, Nov 15 2012 | 12:27 Buy this now at GoodToGo (B2B)

Diablos Del Ritmo - The Colombian Melting Pot 1960-1985There are a number of theories as to how, in the mid-20th century, African music made its way to Colombia’s vibrant port city of Barranquilla, today’s mecca of Caribbean tropical music flled with the chaos of loud music, frenetic taxis, delicious Sancocho soup aromas and a charminglycolourful aura. Some maintain that a man named “Boquebaba” remains responsible. Others claim that seafaring traders and merchants imported the frst sizeable amount of African vinyl.

An absolute certainty is that in March 2007 Analog Africa founder Samy Ben Redjeb arrived in Barranquilla, by some still considered the “Golden Gate of Colombia”. Unaware the impact it would have, he brought along several African records to be used as trading currency for Colombian music. Ben Redjeb’s collection allowed contemporary diehard music collectors to finally hold their cherished records and learn the real names of many of their favourite songs, which they had heard through coastal sound systems for nearly three decades. In return, the gesture opened pathways to depths of Colombian music the likes of which he would not have encountered otherwise.

After half a decade in which seven expeditions were made to Barranquilla, Analog Africa is honoured to present “Diablos del Ritmo,” an anthology of – and tribute to – the immense sound of 1970s Colombia. Thousands of records were collected, boiling down to a colourfully diverse selection of 32 tracks (available on double CD, 2 x double LP and digital format), split between Afrobeat, Afrofunk, Psychedelia-inspired rhythms on Part 1 and an array of danceable tropical rhythms on Part 2.

Perhaps nothing epitomizes the lush tropical character of Colombia’s Caribbean coast more than Barranquilla’s carnival, the city’s most important cultural event. The pridefully celebrated occasion was once a grand stage on which record labels of the ’70s would competitively showcase their best material for the frst time to an endearing public. Competitions continue to take place these days to crown the collector with the most exclusive tracks – and some have been won in recent years with records provided by Analog Africa’s founder. This sort of exchange between African and Colombian music typifes what was happening beneath the surface in 1970s Colombia.

Colombian music in general, especially the music from the Caribbean coast, is heavily infuenced by the drums, percussion and chanting of African rhythms. Music from big players of the day – from Nigeria, Congo, Ivory Coast and Cuba – entered Barranquilla constantly. Afrobeat, Terapia and Lumbalú clashed efortlessly with the tropical sounds of Puya, Porro, Gaita, Cumbiamba, Mapelé and Chandé to create a rich amalgam of irresistible dance music while traditional styles were refned by an elite cadre of accordion players that included Alejandro Duran, Alfredo Gutierrez, Calixto Ochoa, Anibal Velasquez and Andres Landero.

Signifcantly, Colombia is home to the largest black population in the Hispanic world and second only to Brazil in Latin America. And, as such, communities of African descendants, like the Champetuos and the Cimarrones, were empowered by the thick African ether consuming the country, and stirred the musical melting pot even more. The heights Afro-Colombian music had reached by the early ’80s was nothing short of exceptional. But, none of it could have been possible without two vital engines. One was the Picó sound systems – roaming street clubs dedicated to mobilizing and spreading the rawest music of Africa, the Caribbean and the rest of the transatlantic black world. The second were forwarding-thinking producers. Discos Tropical, named after the palm tree-flled tropical character of Barranquilla, Felito Records and Machuca, amongst several other key players, governed and diversifed the psychedelic and coastal music scene of Colombia.

Alongside an all-encompassing 60-page booklet inclusive of 40 vintage photographs, 24 interviews and documented frst-hand knowledge, the deep cuts of Analog Africa’s 12th compilation will instantly transport any listener to Colombia’s thriving Caribbean coast to indulge in the succulent belly of tropical music’s untold historic tales.

Please note: The 32 songs will all be included on the double CD. For the vinyl release they will be divided into two separately available double LPs.



01. Wganda Kenya – El Caterete
02. Julian y su Combo – Enyere Kumbara
03. Myrian Makenwa – Amampondo
04. Wasamaye Rock Group – Wasamaye
05. GrupoAbharca – Shallcarri
06. Sexteto Manaure – Bajo El Trupillo Guajiro
07. Fuentes All Stars – Pégale a La Nalga
08. Grupo Folclórico – Juipiti
09. Wganda Kenya -Shakalaodé
10. Los Salvajes – Amor Salvaje
11. Calixto Ochoa y Los Papaupas – Lumbalu 12. Abelardo Carbono – Quiero Mi Gente
13. Conjunto Son San -Cumbia San Pablera
14. Conjunto Barbacoa – Calambre


01. Sonora Dinamita – Eco en Stereo
02. Peyo Torres y sus Diablos del Ritmo – La Veterana
03. SonoraTropical – Lluvia
04. Pianonegro – La Cascada
05. Andrés Landero – Busca La Careta
06. Alejandro Durán – Cumbia Costeña
07. Andrés Landero – La Pava Congona
08. Ramiro Beltrán – Agoniza El Magdalena
09. Cresencio Camacho – Santana en Salsa
10. Los Alegres Diablos – La Motilona
11. Cumbia Soledeña – El Garabato
12. J. Alvear – Cumbia Cincelejana
13. Juan Piña Y su Muchachos – La Nena
14. Roberto de la Barrerra y su Piano – Sabrosón
15. Los Curramberos de Guayabal – La Bulla
16. Conjunto Típico del Valledupar – La Pegajosa
17. Carmelo Gutiérrez Y Su Conjunto – Fantasías Del Carnaval
18. Alfredo Gutiérrez y sus Estrellas – Pájaro Madrugador

The compilation VariousDiablos Del Ritmo – The Colombian Melting Pot 1960-1985” (Analog Africa) is going to be released November 23, 2012.

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