October 17, 2013
Abelardo Carbono | El Maravilloso Mundo De Abelardo Carbono
TITLE: El Maravilloso Mundo De Abelardo Carbono: Psychedelia, Afroroots & Champeta In 1980s Barranquilla
There’s a massive re-examination of Colombian music now underway, spurred by the work of crate-diggers who are unearthing a trove of fabulous recordings to which the rest of the world had, until recently, paid scant attention. Add Abelardo Carbono to that list. He’s a former policeman from Barranquilla who in the 1980s helped develop the genre we now call champeta – Afro-Colombian rhythms fused with sounds from the crates of records that entered Colombia’s largest Caribbean port and became hits with the country’s picos (mobile sound systems): Nigerian Afrobeat, Congolese soukous, Cuban mambo, Ivoirean ziglibithi, Haitian compas, American funk and psych-rock, pretty much anything groovy under the sun. Carbono is a syncretic master: check out tracks 1, 3 and 8 to hear his stew with all ingredients included. His Latinized takes on Afrobeat are brilliant: try 2 and 5. Add electronic beats and champeta becomes terapia: 11 and 17 are excellent examples. Another great find from the bottomless well of Colombian music.
TOP TRACKS: 1 2 3 5 8 11 17
ALSO RECOMMENDED: 4 6 9 10 13 15 16
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Actually the ball got rolling with Palenque Records' Champeta Criolla back in 1998. A 2nd volume followed years later. Though the recent compilations have been better packaged, I find them less inspiring. Maybe its because most focus on "Afro funk" and Afro psych." Also, Fruko's Wganda Kenya and the late great Joe Arroyo produced some of the best early terapia tunes. And Soca music should be added to the list of genres that was highly influential. Kudos to Fabian and his AfroColombia website also. Looking forward to hearing this one.
I'll heartily second Ken's recommendation of Palenque's "Champeta Criolla," and also volume 2 in the series, awesomely subtitled "The Real Motherf*ckers of AfroColombian Music." In fact, Palenque's Lucas Silva is the compiler of this Abelardo Carbono set. And the Africolombia blog is a great read (in Spanish) and listen: http://acbia.wordpress.com.
Pise, this isn't one of those blogs where I post recordings so you can download them free. If you're interested in this album, it's a recent release and it's easy to find -- just buy it. You'll be supporting a great record label and the artist will earn royalties from your purchase.
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