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Thursday, July 24, 2008

Fire Makes Angels

I just spent a few days down south in the land de los angeles. I flew over California and watched trees burn. I landed amongst the pacific haze that the area is known for (a combination of the sea mist, fire smoke, and pollution.)

Spending time with a childhood friend of Greek parentage and cultural heritage, who had just come back from 2 months in Greece, we were grooving to some of the latest sounds goin' down at clubs in places like Mykonos.   We were comparing the sounds on L.A.'s hip hop/reggaeton station "Latino" to the sounds coming out of Europe and enjoying the similarities.  The fact that DJ Laz was in town and a guest on Saturday, probably added to the comparison and my excitement, as he was mixing a bunch of exclusive Latin Miami Bass remixes and promoting his new album to be released next week.  His new single with Pitbull and Flo-Rida has an interpolation of this European club hit.

Here's a classic: DJ Laz-Esa Morena

(A club in Mykonos, Greece)
Sometime during the week my friend and I were going through some of the more Greek centered pop tracks that he picked up.  After giving him a couple of Cumbia tracks to play while we drove around the expansive L.A. highway system, and after taking down a couple drinks I was shouting out the window to passersby, "CUMBIA!!!"  He made sure to draw my attention to this:

Greek Cumbia!: Locomondo-Κρητική Cumbia

L.A. is the land of Brangelina, Hollywood Starlets, Rehab, and MTV reality famous for doing nothing celebs.   I see young people move there and get caught up.  But beyond that, it's a huge diverse place with vast neighborhoods of people from literally everywhere, and that's a side to L.A. that doesn't always make it to mainstream media markets (Black Eyed Peas being an exception?!?) 
(Soundtrack for what?!?)

On my way back home I was listening to Fosforo, who did that Cumbia de Obama track, and started thinking about what it would be like to be a politically conscious, working or middle class person, or a member of a large ethnic community in a place that is so engulfed in blind capital consumerism.  What would it be like to be a teacher in a place of distorted quality of life priorities,  in vast neighborhoods notorious for being ruled by youth with guns or corrupt police, while young millionaires party their lives away down the street.  It's a place that bubbles with violence and has exploded in rage many times before.  I did a show in a community center there and the music that was going on from the local bands was so intense and exciting.  The fire in the song below, makes me think of the rage one must feel.  After awhile I realized I didn't have to think too hard, because inevitably this all seems familiar.  When it goes down though, L.A. the front lines, is going to be a crazy place.

L.A. revolution music: Fosforo-Guerra

5 comments:

nonsense said...

That Fosforo track is great...thanks for the music!

zhao said...

interesting. thanks for the article!

and i think this Afro-Arabic Dubstep and Digital Gamelan should be right up your alley:

http://differentwaters.blogspot.com/2008/07/bloggariddims-45-dj-zhao.html

cheers!

Anonymous said...

Appreciate your blog and tunes...but man, kind of a played out picture of L.A. Yes, LA has highways, Hollywood, and a highly diverse, occasionally combustible population. If you take the time to dig deeper, you'll be rewarded with more than cliches.

VR,

f.hernandez

Boima said...

Right on f.hernandez. I think I was trying to use the cliches just to paint a story to the music that I was posting. Fair enough.

I don't feel like I was attacking L.A. just to put that out there.

I have had some great unique experiences there and I think that that's what I was trying to say in general. That it is known as one thing, but there's all this other stuff going on. Maybe I didn't do a good job of that.

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