Sometimes I am asked the question “Don’t you ever get tired of cumbia week after week, day after day?” The answer is a resounding “No”. Believe it or not I do not tire. The thing about cumbia is that it’s in an ever-evolving process. Every week I encounter a whole new approach to the sounds of cumbia. Whether it be a remix of a classic from its respected country of origin or something completely new with elements of other genres or even elements I can’t pinpoint exactly the origin of. This puts all fear of nu cumbia dying to rest, for me anyway. I can’t tire of an ever-evolving sound, different tempos and crazy feats of creativity. I found for myself personally to attempt to use elements of genres I favor and mash them into the nu cumbia universe. This has been a personal challenge of mine that keeps me from feeling stale and uninterested in working on new projects. My personal sound comes from my influences of post-punk, new wave, and ambience to the likes of Eno and Bowie. Others take their own personal influences into the genre (if one can actually label it as a genre anymore).
One of the big things happening right now is the whole Andean respect. Will Eede is working on finishing up his new incredible Andean mixtape that I promise will move your soul. I can’t wait to be able to post it here but I have to respectfully wait until he’s ready. But others have tapped into this style very recently. One new to this blog in particular is Señor Griff.
Here is a slow electro-huayno cumbia track totally chilled out mixing traditional sounds with nu.
And then we have one of the greatest and one of my favorite live cumbia bands Cumbia Tokeson. I’ve posted about them before and to my joy they continue to record new tracks. They mix chicha elements with live guitars, reggae grooves mixed with traditional cumbia rhythms. As long as these guys are around cumbia surely will not die. So book them if you can!
Speaking of unique live bands you might remember these lads from last week remixed by Stereo Reveulta. Here they are Santa Leyenda Ska in live band form. A lot of their tracks are ska based but they tap into cumbia as well.
Mikael Palner the boss behind Urban World Records shared a mix with me this week. Featuring much cumbia and related vibes, he mixed this live at Symbiosis Gathering 2012 in Pyramid Lake, Nevada. I was excited by this to hear some of the teams he promotes mixed by the boss himself.
For another example of old mashed with nu Snow Balderas and La Typica Soundsystem uploaded this video teaser for their new remix. It’s another prime example of the long life and diversity of cumbia.
Mezcal Sound System dropped this incredibly dope remix of Strobelight a few days back. Even better than the original, MSS did an incredible job with this cumbia futuristica.
Switching gears now back to live bands I have this new track from a group in Lima Peru. They bring another nu sound influenced by chicha of the past with originality and uniqueness all their own. Their percussion is simply incredible and addicting. Also awesome guitar licks throughout. This is Olaya Sound System.
Turbo Sonidero Futuristico apparently is just less than a month older than I am. It was his birthday on the 23rd of May. Here is his chopped and screwed tumbia he made to celebrate the day of his birth. What better way to do so?
With sounds like this next one I can’t possibly see an end of innovative nu cumbia in sight. Mr Jagz takes us on a crazy trip with this one.
The innovative sounds continue with this dope track from Rescate DJ. It’s another perfect representation of classic with nu innovation.
Extra-Estrada records features some of the best modern Balkan tunes. With this new one we come to the very popular sounds of Eastern European cumbia.
A long time back I posted Noia’s cumbia remix of Joe Meek’s early electronic classic Orbit Around The Moon. Hector Heathcote aka The Mathematical Brain always at work on new video mash-ups, decided to mash the track with a short film much to my pleasure.
A leader in the world of nu cumbia and 3ball innovators is of course Yelram Selectah aka Tijuana Experimental.
My boy DJ Melo is someone I’ve known personally for a long time. We’ve worked alongside each other many times over many long nights. It’s always a pleasure to hear a nu cumbia from him since he’s the one who pushed me into producing nu cumbia. I’m also proud to witness his achievements in moombahton innovation.
The incomparable Andres Digital made this edit of a reggae classic Ken Boothe tune featuring Ms. Dynamite. I remember I attempted a Ken Boothe edit once but it was nowhere near as good as this one. That’s why you’ll never hear it.
And Intiche! Intiche is crazy! Talk about futuristic nu cumbia (or better yet electronativo) and I will tell you to listen to Initche. Here are new Intiche tracks. Check Intiche’s tour schedule on SoundCloud, some cool dates are coming up.
To hip hop mixed with cumbia we also have a never tiring sub-genre that continues to please audiences live. Check out Stereo Revuelta with his dope new track.
Returning to the other end of the world you’ll find Turkish cumbia even. If you look close enough you’ll find DJ Delay making it happen. My brilliant (far more brilliant than I) colleague Cumbionico interviewed DJ Delay on NuCumbiaExperience.Com earlier this week. What a wonderful interview it was too. He exposed me to some really cool tracks from the Midi-East by DJ Delay. Check them out in all their digital insanity.
Even farther east you’ll find the ever-evolving Japanese tropical bass and reggae scene. Ever since bringing Nice J on board I’ve been exposed to some great music I might not have heard other wise. Here is a nu cumbia Japanese style from a recent post about Part 2 Style.
I truly do enjoy writing these weekly posts but this one in particular was a real pleasure for me. I don’t know exactly why that is but I just felt good writing it. Maybe it was the virtual travel all over the world through the sounds of cumbia, or maybe it was the joy in presenting the case for cumbia’s immortality. It probably was largely both reasons.