Life Before Moombahton

So over the past year or so I’d read about a number of artists/dj’s claiming that they were messing around with the idea of Moombahton by slowing down tracks and mixing Dutch House with Reggaeton before it had been given a name and ID by Dave Nada.

Some of this could be true and is bound to have happened but without any thought about actually converting it into an actual movement.

Toy Selectah was close in sound and style with his Raverton tracks, see below.

Max Le Daron also made his Cumbiaton tracks just before Moombahton came on the scene and his idea was also much closer but not quite Moombahton.

I read in an interview that the dude from Antartek Records, Erasmo Parra Vera, said this:

“Back in 2004 I made a track called“Metatarso”and it was a kind of Moombahton track, I was making it with the idea of combining house sounds with a Reaggeaton tempo and dembow, this track was later used in a cartoon for kids.”

In the UK, our very own Moombahton Queen, Sarah Young said this in Mixmag:

“Years ago I actually used to play reggae and Latin house tracks and try and blend it with Dutch house through messing around with the BPM’s. After about a year of doing this I read a blog about moombahton and then heard Toddla T tweeting about it. I read how Dave Nada had taken reggaeton and Dutch house and geared it down to 108 BPM’s and capow, moombahton. Up until that point I thought I was slightly off my rocker pairing those styles together. I guess genius starts with madness.”

Indeed, I, myself,  had toyed with the idea of Balkaton in 2007 but that was just a DJ mix where I had mixed up Balkan vybz with Reggaeton vyz at around the same BPM, without having to slow them down, and I called it Balkaton!  But it was just a mix and the Balkan tracks did not contain the dem bow and so it was purely conceptual as an idea and “co-incidental in name”.

You can listen to that mix here, BALKATON but don’t go there thinking you’re gonna hear Moombahton cause it’s not Moombahton, just Balkan & Reggaeton tracks (& some other stuff), hence Balkaton!

However, the facts are that Dave Nada INVENTED MOOMBAHTON, full stop, period, no argument and full respect to him and no-one can take that away from him!

But it does bring into focus that not all new creations are that new and in all fairness to Dave, being the humble guy that he is, he never claimed that either.  However, he is the catalyst for this whole movement and that can never be taken away from him, no matter who did what, whenever it was.

Dave did mention that he was inspired to create Moombahton by Sabo and his Bersa Discos #6 release:

In turn, Sabo said in response to this post, that he was inspired to make Bersa Discos #6 after he heard a Haaksman & Haaksman remix of a Gotan Project track. He said this, this morning:

This is a tune by Gotan Project remixed by Haaksman and Haaksman in 2007 that I used to play a lot. It was on a 10 inch vinyl and the flip side had a sick Edu K remix too. Its not as electronic as today’s sound, but the idea of fusing dem bow rhythms with music that is NOT reggaeton, to me that is the principal idea of Moombahton. Listen to the break down at 3:30, this tune defintely inspired me to make Bersa # 6, so maybe this was Moombahton before Moombahton too??

So I raised this issue recently on the M & M Group on Facebook and I received some education, most notably from one of the original Moombahnista’s, Jorge Melo and another dude called Sam.

Now updated with some other entries too that followed after this post was originally published!

I was most surprised about the Modeselektor submission, who would have thought that!!!

NB: None of this has been researched in any great depth or analysis, so it’s basically “pub-talk” and this post has been made of f the “hooof” as De Niro would say!  I’m sure there’s loads more examples than just the ones mentioned below and so do please comment and add links if you have any further examples.

Here’s a selction of what was said:

Sam Kleefisch:

There was some electronic influence in both reggaeton and dancehall pre-moombahton, I would say some people who could definitely lay some claim to being legitiimately ‘pre-moombahton’.

IN MY OPINION would be Sabo for his Sol Selectas series and South Rakkas Crew for their futuristic dancehall riddim “Red Alert’ which totally sounds like moombahton but happened before moombahton.

One could also look to some of Modeselektor’s space age ragga riddim works that dropped a few years prior as a nice precursor also.


Me on Melo’s Toy submission:

Toy is a BEAST..doesn’t get as much credit as he deserves.  He was in the thick of Reggaeton, Nu Cumbia and also Tribal Guaracherro, way ahead of MANY!

Peep the tunes from dj morphius on this mixtape, almost the same og concept of slowed dance tunes over dembows..

Moombahton Test Set (03-10) by Azdjmelo on Mixcloud

Max Le Daron

Max said his Cumbiaton edits were, he thinks, made to play at parties a few weeeks before Mombahton was unveiled.  Then 1 month later Nada published his EP.

Further he gives this track, by Argentinian but Spanish based DJ Nice Noise, as an example of a track that came before Moombahton was announced on the net.

He says:

This track, on my itunes is dated on 22 January 2010, so also a few weeks before moombahton EP

DJ Nice Noise says this in response:

When I made that mix (Afrojack Zeggien vs. reggaeton loop ) moombahton as there was no name, but there were many people trying this concept of duch house in time to reggueton.

Patricio Smink

This dude said this:

Yes there was! (Pre-Moombahton) I know it’s not in 108 bpm, but I think here in zzk there were some pretty cool pre moombah stuff.

I checked this out and this was actually released on 1 January 2008: