Why isn't there a thread about cumbia?

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Anybody know about the band Yerba Brava? I just found some Guardian article and they are apparently part of an angry raunchy new blah blah blah trend in Argentine cumbia. (The way they use synths is really middle eastern sounding at times, not that that's necessarily fantastic, but it's kind of interesting.)

RS_LaRue (RSLaRue), Saturday, 14 May 2005 00:00 (seventeen years ago) link

(So yeah, probably the kind of music I wouldn't like if I understood the words. Maybe. Though it sounds a little more indirect about certain things, again based on one Guardian article I read about 75% of.)

RS_LaRue (RSLaRue), Saturday, 14 May 2005 00:01 (seventeen years ago) link

Uh, I like cumbia, but only have one collection...

Pete Scholtes, Saturday, 14 May 2005 00:04 (seventeen years ago) link

I have less than that (though maybe I could pull together more than one CD's worth if I pulled together what I have scattered across different Colombian salsa CDs that have a cumbia song or two on them). I don't know much about it myself, except that it originated in Colombia and has spread throughout much of Latin America.

RS_LaRue (RSLaRue), Saturday, 14 May 2005 00:06 (seventeen years ago) link

haha I have two, and one's a Rough Guide. (the other is Cumbia Cumbia 2. both are ace.)

Matos-Webster Dictionary (M Matos), Saturday, 14 May 2005 00:09 (seventeen years ago) link

The cumbia expert has arrived.

RS_LaRue (RSLaRue), Saturday, 14 May 2005 00:14 (seventeen years ago) link

viva cumbia.
but also seems lots of different kinds.
the older stuff i've heard has kinda overblown arrangements and sorta schmaltzy vocals.
then there's some really cheap and dirty, nasty drunk sounding stuff that i like a lot.
then some stuff sounds like slicker recent latin pop.
i guess they all use the same cumbia rhythm.

check out

damas gratis
meta gaucha
fita olivares
vilma palma e vampiros

i can't remember any more names right now, but always on the look out, i'm a sucker for that rhythm.....

m0stly clean (m0stly clean), Saturday, 14 May 2005 00:17 (seventeen years ago) link

why isn't there a thread about kumbaya?

Sym Sym (sym), Saturday, 14 May 2005 00:45 (seventeen years ago) link

Cumbia, Kumbaya, Coheed & Cambria

Alex in NYC (vassifer), Saturday, 14 May 2005 00:46 (seventeen years ago) link

Years ago, I traded five home-compiled cassettes of Ethiopian jazz to Joe Strummer (of all people), in exchange for five home-compiled cassettes of cumbia. Fantastic stuff! But the lack of track listings made it impossible to track down the songs / artists I really like, and every foray into "guess buying" left me with crap schmaltz and a lighter pocket. Thanks for namechecks of "cheap and dirty, nasty drunk sounding stuff" - exactly what I'm looking for.

Dee Xtrovert (dee dee), Saturday, 14 May 2005 00:46 (seventeen years ago) link




*ahem* *whew* Glad to get that out of my system.

Goodbye Indian Summer (Dee the Lurker), Saturday, 14 May 2005 01:01 (seventeen years ago) link


RS_LaRue (RSLaRue), Saturday, 14 May 2005 01:05 (seventeen years ago) link

Dee hates Mexico,*
so of course she hates the beat
that Mexico loves!

I guess if I lived
with it all around me I'd
feel much the same way

But I don't at all,
so I think it kicks much ass;
chuntaro music!

Celso Pina and
El Gran Silencio use
cumbia so well

RS if I was
less of an asshole I'd do
that CD for you

*This might be overstating it just a bit, but not by much.

Haikunym (Haikunym), Saturday, 14 May 2005 01:10 (seventeen years ago) link

Do you know any of these names Haikunym: Yerba Brava, Flor de Piedra, Kalu, Guachin y la Chala? Those were on a short cumbia mix I downloaded (today or yesterday--I already forget). It seems Yerba Brava is Argentine, so maybe the others are too. I have some dribs and drabs of cumbia from Colombian salsa bands (Latin Brothers, Grupo Niche, King Bongo (basically Grupo Gale)--thought there were others, but I can't seem to find them), like I said, but I'm not sure how they compare to Colombian bands that specialize in cumbia.

RS_LaRue (RSLaRue), Saturday, 14 May 2005 01:22 (seventeen years ago) link

Very Be Careful, yo!

Bobby Peru (Bobby Peru), Saturday, 14 May 2005 01:39 (seventeen years ago) link

have you numb-knucled cunts ever had to live next door to a cocke snorting family man who hooks up speakers from 1950s and blasts out t-grade cumbia for 36 hours on end, in a thrid world country in the middle of 40 degree summers where you actually pray for a ucking blackout to take away the agony that is cumbia? And have you ever watched a tv show where these midgets on steroids play cool-boy-fag to a bunch of distressed in heat 13 year olds with catholic fathers riding their asses, and everyone claims that this is the best use of a casio?

Queen Gimme a fucking brazilian break, Saturday, 14 May 2005 08:52 (seventeen years ago) link

Cumbia is the new punk, obviously.

RS_LaRue (RSLaRue), Saturday, 14 May 2005 09:03 (seventeen years ago) link

Hence, it probably mostly sucks.

RS_LaRue (RSLaRue), Saturday, 14 May 2005 09:40 (seventeen years ago) link

what's a better use of a casio??

numb-knucled cunt (m0stly clean), Saturday, 14 May 2005 14:07 (seventeen years ago) link

sadly RS I don't know any of those groups very well, just heard a bit of yerba brava

i need to get my cumbia on for summertime, maybe i'll go see what they have at circuit city, thanks for the recommendations

Haikunym (Haikunym), Saturday, 14 May 2005 15:45 (seventeen years ago) link

la nueva luna


leo mattioli

bajo palabra

pablito lezcano

la base

pocho la pantera

ricky maravilla

gladys la bomba tucumana


There you have some keywords to look for cumbia.

Nicola, Sunday, 15 May 2005 03:53 (seventeen years ago) link

Thanks Nicola,
I've heard some guachin, but none of the rest.
I will try to track them down.
What's a "tucumana"?

m0stly clean (m0stly clean), Sunday, 15 May 2005 14:46 (seventeen years ago) link

gareth OTM

Search : "vitamina" by Damas gratis. The only sonically-adventurous thing ever to come out of the cumbia villera "scene" (gangsta rap equivalent = lyrics about misoginy, sniffing glue, guns & petty crime). Also "vamos a robar (corazones)" by Pablo Lescano (the only auteur in the "scene") and Fidel Nadal (former leader of the "seminal" post-punk-funk-reggae outfit Todos tus Muertos, now all gone Rastafarian. Yeah, ragga-cumbia anyone?)

Destroy : The rest. Cheap, interchangeable we-all-use-the-same-casio-sounds bands, all coming from the assembly line that is magenta records (more maffia than motown).

bajo palabra tried for a little bit to mix hip hop lyrics and "attitude" with cumbia. Didn't work out well so they faded out completely.

Ricky maravilla, pocho la pantera (super mop top alert! el vez, eat your heart out), gladys la bomba tucumana, adrian y los dados negros and many others are early 90's incarnations of cumbia, more "melodic" than rhytmic, and relying more on "live" instrumentation and romantic themes.

Also, search the biggest pop-cumbia hit ever : "la ventanita" by sombras (mid-90s, could be seen as a transition between the more "melodic" sounding of the former and the rhythm-oriented sound of the latter cumbia villera). Groundbreaking, at least in terms of popularity.

All this stuff could be easily found on kazaa, I think.

fernando, Sunday, 15 May 2005 17:37 (seventeen years ago) link


that was a great description but what about Fidel Nadal was said. He has nothing to do with cumbia.

People, you should give it a hear to Todos Tus Muertos. They were a great band. Also Lumumba. BUT THEY ARE ABSOLUTELY OFF TOPIC!!!

Any of you have a gmail account? If so, give your adress and I'll try to send you some cumbia songs.

But people, there are thousands of better rythms to look for. In case you are looking for interesting rock or pop bands the list is countless.

Nicola, Sunday, 15 May 2005 20:34 (seventeen years ago) link

I'm just a salsero who is slumming.

RS_LaRue (RSLaRue), Sunday, 15 May 2005 20:42 (seventeen years ago) link

mostly clean,

''tucumana'' is the female adjective for the people of Tucuman, one province of Argentina.

Her only hit ''La pollera amarilla'' (The yellow skirt)

Nicola, Sunday, 15 May 2005 20:49 (seventeen years ago) link

well, i like the cumbia i've heard, what do you suggest tha is better

i'm still a sucka for the celso pina/control macehete track - i've actually been informed my best man duties at an upcoming wedding include playing that track as i've gotten the bride & groom hooked

H (Heruy), Sunday, 15 May 2005 22:06 (seventeen years ago) link

Agree with poster above that El Gran Silencio do a good job of cumbia, but they are an art band (albeit one with some street cred), so they do a lot besides cumbia. RS should give them a listen, though, because they are also into incorporating Arabic music into theirs.

Selena's brother (A.B. Quintallanero?) fronts the Kumbia Kings, and I think they are fairly popular, but what I have heard is not anything special.

Part of the back story is apparently that there was a decent-sized Colombian community that settled in Monterey NL, and that's how cumbia got established in northern Mexico.

Vornado, Sunday, 15 May 2005 23:07 (seventeen years ago) link

i from argentina
estilo: GUARACHA


EMPLEADO, Monday, 16 May 2005 16:15 (seventeen years ago) link

hey nicola, you can send groovy tunes to mostlyclean that's at gmail, thanks for the offer, let me know what else you're into, and i'll send something back.....

m0stly clean (m0stly clean), Tuesday, 17 May 2005 01:40 (seventeen years ago) link

no avives giles, fernando

gustavo, Tuesday, 17 May 2005 07:37 (seventeen years ago) link

one month passes...
What are you talking about? You all sound snobs. Y hate cumbia, like more argentians that know something about music.

Ohhhhhhh, Wednesday, 29 June 2005 00:51 (seventeen years ago) link

dick el demasiado, "la cebolla"
piedra feat chico & delaselva, "quiero pare"

both forthcoming on the atom heart-compiled collection, coconut fm.

philip sherburne (philip sherburne), Tuesday, 5 July 2005 20:11 (seventeen years ago) link

three weeks pass...

Red - The closest thing we ever had down here to really really great cumbia pop. It's miles, miles away from what's been called as "cumbia villera", Red were always more focused into bombastic synth lines building up to huge, sweeping choruses.

I yousendited a song cuz I was planning to use it in a post for Edward O's Umlauts, but since that wasn't my blog, I thought it could be a bit intrusive of me to link it. But the song is still there, so if anyone's interested, here's a link.

"Also, search the biggest pop-cumbia hit ever : "la ventanita" by sombras"

Sombras lead guitar always sounded quite Verlaine-ish to me.

iodine (iodine), Sunday, 31 July 2005 02:18 (seventeen years ago) link

one month passes...
To All of you out there!!!!!!!!! You have got to listen to the real cumbia!!!! nothing better than ANDRES LANDERO he is the king of cumbia, nothing gets more heavy than this. he recorded from the 60s until the 90s, real cumbia sanjacintera, cumbia from rural colombia. Those tapes that someone was talking about that belonged to Strummer most probably include songs from ANDRES LANDERO, Joe Strummer loved this guy.

mario galeano, Tuesday, 20 September 2005 03:00 (seventeen years ago) link


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Master Hussain Bukhsh, Wednesday, 28 September 2005 14:13 (seventeen years ago) link

Sir I m interested to work with u, I have visited ur site, that has a lot of information, I got that, and have got too impressed by ur work, I also wana be with u in promoting TKD, Sir I m WTF holder 7th dan, I m PhD holder in the Philosophy and sokeship 10th dan MA, sir I hope, u will answer me soon, and will accept my request.

m0stly clean (m0stly clean), Wednesday, 28 September 2005 14:44 (seventeen years ago) link

Daer pupil,

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Tuomas (Tuomas), Wednesday, 28 September 2005 14:56 (seventeen years ago) link

two weeks pass...
does anyone know a music artist from Columbia called Gladys? Please can you offer me any information about her albums or songs she has done? I would really appreciate it. Please e-mail it to me as sometimes i cannot check this website. I know her style is Cumbia.

mogular, Sunday, 16 October 2005 23:13 (seventeen years ago) link

two months pass...
I'm listening to Lucho Bermudez, great old (40s/50s?) cumbia, with clarinets and stuff. I had never heard a single song in this style until this year, and I think I like it better than most Latin music I've heard from this time, in addition to liking it better than a lot of the other cumbia I've heard. It's very familiar sounding on one level, because it's clearly a cousin of big band era stuff that my mother would have listened to, but the fact that it's cumbia instead bypasses any problem my inner adolescent would have with it just being music for my mom's generation.

Rockist_Scientist (RSLaRue), Sunday, 25 December 2005 16:21 (seventeen years ago) link

four months pass...
la nueva luna
amar azul
flor de piedra

ariel de argentina, Thursday, 27 April 2006 22:14 (sixteen years ago) link


Sundar, I think you would like 40s/50s (?) cumbia with the clarinet in it (if you haven't heard it yet and if you ever look at this thread).

(I still have not received any CDs of any sort from Señor N. Matia Armando Benitez Haikunym.)

Rockist_Scientist (RSLaRue), Thursday, 27 April 2006 22:28 (sixteen years ago) link

_________ And Jazz Fusion

I love this Mingus album, though few others seem to.

Myke. (Myke Weiskopf), Friday, 28 April 2006 02:00 (sixteen years ago) link

eleven months pass...

Rockist Scientist, Tuesday, 24 April 2007 02:25 (fifteen years ago) link

Reading back, this is a pretty funny thread, actually.

Rockist Scientist, Tuesday, 24 April 2007 02:32 (fifteen years ago) link

six months pass...

A nice little mix (of fairly traditional sounding cumbia) from someone I basically know nothing about:




Rockist Scientist, Friday, 23 November 2007 02:35 (fifteen years ago) link

For MIA fans (scroll down a little):


(Just Googling "Sonido Martines" brings up a lot of interesting stuff.)

Rockist Scientist, Friday, 23 November 2007 03:13 (fifteen years ago) link

two years pass...

A little desperate pandering there. Anyway, I thought I'd post this cumbia mix (mentioned earlier in this thread), though I don't know who put it together originally:


Also I thought I'd mention I like discs one and two of Nascente's Beginners Guide to Cumbia, which is mostly fairly traditional cumbia from my perspective, but I don't care so much for the third disc which is supposed to be future cumbia or something, and features less than satisfying blends of cumbia with other styles. I've heard better cumbia fusions here and there elsewhere. But those first two discs are great. I also recently bought Vampisoul's Afrosound of Colombia (not strictly a cumbia compilation, though it has some cumbia in it) and don't care for it. Too many annoying novelty tracks. Too much Colombian garage funk, or whatever I'm calling it today. Some of the obscure Fruko y Sus Tesos tracks, of course, are a treat, but as an overall package I find it disappointing.

_Rudipherous_, Wednesday, 6 October 2010 14:40 (twelve years ago) link

Looking at the amazon review for the Beginners Guide, I can't tell if this is positive or negative, but I think it's probably the latter.

Disc No. 3 is the best way to kill the Cumbia, rassssss.

_Rudipherous_, Wednesday, 6 October 2010 14:41 (twelve years ago) link

I'm probably being too hard on the Afrosound compilation. Once you get past the novelty tracks, it's pretty good I guess. Still not as AMAZING as some have made it out to be.

I'm finding it interesting how close one of the horn parts in "Manyoma" is to the trumpets in (the presumably later) "Rebelion," like a not quite as tight version of the trumpets on that salsa classic.

_Rudipherous_, Wednesday, 6 October 2010 15:22 (twelve years ago) link

three months pass...

Cumbia professor:


_Rudipherous_, Friday, 28 January 2011 17:50 (twelve years ago) link

one year passes...

Published on Aug 13, 2012

A new twist on an old classic. We took a popular 80's cumbia (originally made famous by Fito Olivares) and rewrote the lyrics to communicate the delicious taste and health benefits of Honey Nut Cheerios. Everyone sing along.


bish borscht (La Lechera), Monday, 7 January 2013 05:22 (ten years ago) link

That's great

curmudgeon, Monday, 7 January 2013 15:30 (ten years ago) link

i know, isn't it? i saw it when i was watching tv and i had to look it up and put it somewhere for safekeeping.

bish borscht (La Lechera), Monday, 7 January 2013 15:32 (ten years ago) link

nine months pass...

from email I just received

The Wall Street Journal is premiering the video for LA-based neo-Cumbia group Quitapenas at http://on.wsj.com/1aHFczr. The track, produced by Fool’s Gold’s Lewis Pesacov, appears on the Mas Tropical/Que Te Pasa 7”, which is out now on White Iris Records. Of the video, director Jordan Harkins notes, “The ‘Mas Tropical’ video was shot around the Yucatan peninsula this past summer and at a house party in Echo Park with the band.

curmudgeon, Thursday, 24 October 2013 16:25 (nine years ago) link


Cumbia, 3ball, ruidoson, deep mariachi (!) and more

curmudgeon, Friday, 25 October 2013 14:23 (nine years ago) link

five years pass...

Is cumbia having another moment right now? I feel like I'm hearing a lot of it lately.

longtime caller, first time listener (man alive), Monday, 24 June 2019 20:37 (three years ago) link

three years pass...


Hua Hsu wrote about this Cali synth Cumbia take on low rider soul and Doo Wop anthems

Not bad

curmudgeon, Tuesday, 3 January 2023 16:59 (two months ago) link

Didn’t see any mentions of Turbo Sonidero elsewhere here on ILM

curmudgeon, Tuesday, 3 January 2023 17:00 (two months ago) link

not sure about this. will listen again at a louder volume.

the duke of earl sampling did raise a smile.

stirmonster, Tuesday, 3 January 2023 23:43 (two months ago) link

idk. it's ok.

recently i've spent a lot of time listening to mega mixes on youtube like this:


budo jeru, Wednesday, 4 January 2023 00:09 (two months ago) link

I heard a podcast earlier this week talk about cumbia. So seems to be getting some interest. I did see there was a double cd of mid 70s cumbia reviewed in Uncut over the last few months that I listened to a few tracks of on Spotify.

I picked up one volume of psychedelic chichas a decade or 2 ago which was pretty good. May have picked up a different set of cumbia back in Dublin too. Picturing a cover in my head now.

Psychedelic one was good but not very lysergic I think. Should be worth finding.

Will see if I can find the link to the podcast in the morning

Stevolende, Wednesday, 4 January 2023 00:53 (two months ago) link

the first track here is an absolute jam


sleeve, Wednesday, 4 January 2023 01:10 (two months ago) link

I like that mega mix which has a photo of Aniceto Molina on it. He died in 2015 I think, and I see that Johnny Molina is carrying on the tradition. Johnny played some Washington DC area gigs in August 2022 ( advertised in Dc area Spanish language media and tickeri Spanish language website that lists Latin shows all over US)

curmudgeon, Wednesday, 4 January 2023 17:13 (two months ago) link

This comp of slowed down cumbia (aka rebajada from Monterrey, Mexico) was my favorite “archival” release from last year:


not too strange just bad audio (brimstead), Wednesday, 4 January 2023 18:22 (two months ago) link

This was the podcast episode

Stevolende, Thursday, 5 January 2023 17:58 (two months ago) link

Saw Meridian Brothers from Colombia last night in W . DC. Their latest album is salsa inspired but they add psych and rock aspects. Live they had some Peruvian chicha aspects and Cumbia. Between bands a DJ was playing old 45s of Cumbia and Chicha.

Meridian Brothers are playing with Mexican Cumbia punk ska band Son Rompe Pera in NYC Friday.

This is all Cumbia for rock en espanol fans and is a bit different than the Cumbia on commercial radio marketed to a more mainstream Spanish speaking audience. All these variations sound interesting to me

curmudgeon, Thursday, 12 January 2023 16:00 (two months ago) link

I like the Meridian Brothers, they're a lil quirky

c u (crüt), Thursday, 12 January 2023 16:26 (two months ago) link

Very quirky ( almost too much at times). They did a sped up chicha goes electro version in Spanish with auto tuned vocals of Hendrix Purple Haze last night as an encore

curmudgeon, Thursday, 12 January 2023 17:04 (two months ago) link

why can't i find meridian bros. US tour dates anywhere online?

budo jeru, Thursday, 12 January 2023 17:47 (two months ago) link

one month passes...

Meridian Brothers back in US in April. You should see tour dates now

curmudgeon, Saturday, 11 March 2023 05:34 (two weeks ago) link

Breaking Cumbia into its proper place alongside the other Latin genres dominating the electronic world, @hellotones delivers an eclectic mix featuring a range of styles that soundtrack the Mexican diaspora across New York City.

Listen ⤳ https://t.co/h4PcucWQio pic.twitter.com/KJuVYaj8lG

— BOILER ROOM (@boilerroomtv) March 8, 2023

curmudgeon, Saturday, 11 March 2023 05:34 (two weeks ago) link


Bringing cumbia to the Boiler Room world

curmudgeon, Saturday, 11 March 2023 05:36 (two weeks ago) link

Really good!

Terrycoth Baphomet (bendy), Wednesday, 15 March 2023 04:05 (two weeks ago) link

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