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This Week On Alt.Latino: Nothing Is What It Seems

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This Week On Alt.Latino: Nothing Is What It Seems

Alt.Latino

This Week On Alt.Latino: Nothing Is What It Seems

This Week On Alt.Latino: Nothing Is What It Seems

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Maria.

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Identity is a tricky thing: How do we label ourselves, and what exactly does it mean? And to whom?

This week's show explores the same dilemma through a musical prism: a Chilean band with a thing for Bollywood, an Argentine paying homage to a city in Peru, a bunch of Spanish indie rockers paying tribute to a Mexican mariachi legend. Call it what you will: genre-busting, musical diplomacy, musical self-exploration. It's all exciting and utterly satisfying to us here at Alt.Latino.

This week's show also features La Santa Cecilia's unabashed throwback to Mexican cumbia, which to me has always screamed genre-bending.

As a Mexican-American kid growing up in California, I heard cumbia from my aunts, who learned the two-step groove at dance halls featuring Mexican-American bands. Cumbia had become part of the Mexican musical soundscape by way of sailors in port Mexican port cities like Veracruz who introduced music they heard in place like Colombia. It made its way across the border and into the consciousness of the Mexican-American Southwest.

It wasn't until I was an adult that I learned cumbia was a Colombian form and not Mexican. It was one of my first lessons in how musicians ignore boundaries to create something that reflects a little of who they are as well as a bit of the world around them.

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As with the rest of the music on this week's show, it's a lesson we'd all be wise to pay attention to if we want to learn more about the world around us, as well as ourselves.

This Week On Alt.Latino: Nothing Is What It Seems

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Jauja

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Jauja

  • from Jauja
  • by Kali Mutsa

Coming At You From: Chile

Sounds Like: Bollywood en Español

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Ma Do Nar

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Ma Do Nar

  • from Roots Of Life
  • by Los Chicharrons

Coming At You From: Dominican Republic/Denmark

Sounds Like: A Danish guy and a Dominican walk into a West African nightclub…

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La Flor De Canela

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Flor De Canela

  • from 9 Vidas
  • by Maria Volonte

Coming At You From: Peru by way of Argentina

Sounds Like: A gorgeous ode to Peru and Afro-Peruvians by a brilliant Argentine singer.

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Lock In

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Lock In

  • from Sabor Tropical
  • by Empresarios

Coming At You From: Washington, D.C.

Sounds Like: A sound based on '70s mixes of funk and salsa, but with a contemporary sense of exploration.

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Album Available From Fort Knox Recordings

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Cuando los Sapos Mueren Aplastados

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Cuando los Sapos Mueren Aplastados

  • from Cuando Los Sapos Mueren Aplastados
  • by Bambarabanda

Coming At You From: Colombia

Sounds Like: An experimental ode to enduring the crushing routine of everyday life.

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La Negra

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La Negra

  • from Noches Y Citas
  • by La Santa Cecilia

Coming At You From: Los Angeles

Sounds Like: A self-conscious throwback to the Mexican version of traditional cumbia.

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Cuando Vivas Conmigo

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Cuando Vivas Conmigo

  • from Brindando a José Alfredo Jiménez
  • by Refree

Coming At You From: Mexico by way of Spain.

Sounds Like: A tribute to a mariachi songwriting legend.

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Espina

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Espina

  • from Para Armar
  • by Tremor

Coming At You From: Argentina

Sounds Like: Nine Inch Nails in the Andes.

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