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When Catalina Maria Johnson told us she wanted to highlight the “coastal music “of Colombia we didn’t even consider that there would be two parts to that because there are two coasts! Today we look at the music of Colombia’s Caribbean coast with a couple of selections that indicate the isolation of African slaves on either coast.
The Pacific Coast with Catalina Maria Johnson August 8, 2013 - Today we hear music from the Pacific coast which is dominated by marimba.
Colombia has a large Afro Colombian population, up to 80% of the country is of African descent. Our Latin Roots guest today, Catalina Maria Johnson, from the Chicago based program Beat Latino, plays music from the coastal areas where that population is concentrated. It turns out that geography plays a major part in what the music sounds like.

Another live session for Latin Roots as we travel to Fidel Nadal’s home studio in Buenos Aires for a session with a man who owns his genre: Argentine Reggae.

On our recent World Cafe Travel Adventure to Buenos Aires we learned one thing right away: Argentineans may be known for tango, but really, they like to rock! We were invited to the home studio of Catupecu Machu, one of Argentina's most popular bands.

We welcome back Judy Cantor-Navas, Managing Editor of Billboard En Espanol for this Latin Roots segment on flamenco. Much about the origins of this music is contested. Yes, it is now strongly associated with Spain but some say its beginnings actually stretch back to India. It is also strongly associated with the Spanish city of Sevilla but Judy tells us that is also contested.

It didn't just develop, it exploded in popularity through the 90's. Post-Revolution, after training in jazz and classical conservatories, many Cuban musicians were looking for something new that would challenge their skills. Timba developed as a music combining Rumba with other dance music including even funk.

The a cappella style has a sense of urgency, like a physiological necessity for those who sing it. A naked person walks into a fancy gala. In a world of overproduced, painstakingly packaged and perfectly polished music, that's what it's like to hear Canto Cardenche — a completely a cappella style of Mexican music — for the first time.

"Oh! It is so good to fly, at two in the morning, at two in the morning it's so good to fly, oh mama! To fly and let yourself fall, into the arms of a lady……The witch grabs me, she takes me to her home, she sits me on her lap, she gives me kisses …. 'Oh tell me, tell me tell me: how many creatures have you consumed?' 'Nobody, nobody! I only wish to consume you!' " The classic Mexican song "La Bruja" ("The Witch") reads like an erotic nightmare fitting of a David Lynch film. In a drunken fog, the main character is taken hostage by a witch who has her way with him. A dissertation could be written (and probably has been) about La Bruja's insight into Catholic-Latin sexuality, the enticing fear of the woman who "consumes" men in the wee hours of the night, that woman who is even promiscuous in her cannibalism.

Our Latin Roots reporter Rachel Faro is back this time to introduce us to Garifuna. Rachel wears many hats: as an artist, a record producer and she owns the Ashe record label specializing in Latin music.

Garifuna music was originally specific to the geographic area surrounding coastal Belize and Honduras in Central America. It is the music of the Garifuna people who are descendants of slaves settled on islands off the coast, arriving after a shipwreck in the 17th century. Isolated, their own music developed called Punta. Punta spread, as they and their language did, throughout the region. Now the Garifuna have migrated so far that some of the best places to hear their music is in the clubs of New York City and Los Angeles. As always on Latin Roots Rachel will play us an early examples and then music from the extremely popular Garifuna singer and activist Andy Palacio.
Today we welcome a new Latin Roots co-host, singer-songwriter, Grammy nominated record producer and record company owner Rachel Faro to tell us about the Portuguese tradition of Fado.

Fado began in Lisbon and has been around for at least a couple of centuries. Over the years the music has moved from the streets to the concert halls. Fado singers like the national treasure Amalia Rodrigues and Mariza, both of whom we will hear from today, have become international stars. At the heart of Fado the singer conveys "saudade" or the sense of "nostalgia for the present moment" that is so emotional. While in most of Portugal Fado singers are women, Rachel also explores the Fado sung by men in Coimbra. She also prepared an extended Spotify playlist of Fado. Latin Roots on The World Cafe is made possible by a grant from The Wyncote Foundation.
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