AFROTRONIX

Colombia is the new Cuba — a country spectacularly rich in tropical music of astonishing variety, particularly the Pacific coast, with its large African population. There you’ll find Rio Mira, a thrilling collaboration between musicians from neighbouring Ecuador and Colombia. Named after a river that flows just over the Colombian border, the band revitalise the music of the slaves who settled here. The region’s music has a unique style that has been granted cultural heritage status by Unesco, but there is nothing quaint or old-fashioned about this enchanting ensemble. Its distinctive sound is dominated by two marimbas – a xylophone-like instrument that has its roots in Africa – matched against drums and shakers, along with impressive call-and-response vocals and harmonies. Rio Mira’s 2017 debut album, Adiós Morena, was produced by Iván Benavides, one of Colombia’s leading producers.

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 RIO MIRA

(COLOMBIA/ECUADOR)