21 January 2008

Monday's mp3: Paranda Past

Despite a lot of distractions this weekend, including all those inspiring Martin Luther King Jr. Day activities and speeches, I've still got Andy Palacio on the brain.

Palacio, the Garifuna musician/ambassador who passed so suddenly last week, had a fantastic album in Watina, which was one of my favorite albums of 2007. It was his first album with Cumbancha Records, and a real push toward reaffirming and spreading his Garifuna heritage.

But Palacio had been on the music scene for some time. A decade ago Stonetree Records released an album called Paranda: African in Central America that explored a variety of Afro-Latin sounds from Belize and environs, including offerings from Garifuna artists with whom Palacio worked on Watina. Paranda was a foreshadowing of Palacio's later work, much more so than his 1990s dance-oriented albums Til de Mawnin and Keimoun: Beat On.

So here's a song from that earlier compilation, featuring a duet by Palacio with perhaps the other most well-known Garifuna musician, Aurelio Martinez. We hope that Martinez and other Garifuna artists strongly continue the unfinished work of promoting this wonderful but under-recognized musical culture.

[mp3] Andy Palacio & Aurelio Martinez: Lanarime Lamiselu
from Paranda: African in Central America

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