Msafiri Zawose & Sardina de Naiguata | Maurer Hall, Old Town School of Folk Music | International | Chicago Reader

Msafiri Zawose & Sardina de Naiguata Recommended All Ages Soundboard

When: Wed., July 11, 8:30 p.m. 2012

This group from the Venezuelan coastal town of Naiguatá takes its name from a peculiar Carnaval tradition observed throughout much of the Spanish-speaking world: on Ash Wednesday, the ceremonial "burial" of a sardine at the seaside (often the burning of a large totem fish) is preceded by a parade through town, in which citizens mock civil and church authorities, cross-dress, and other­wise subvert gender roles. In Naiguatá the music that accompanies this procession has traditionally been played on percussion and cuatro—a small four-string lute common in the Caribbean—but in the early 80s trumpeter Ricardo Diaz added more percussion, brass instruments, and amplified keyboard and bass. The new sound was a hit, and Diaz institutionalized his approach with La Sardina de Naiguatá, developing a repertoire of exuberant calypsos, waltzes, parrandas, and fulias that don't need a parade to be fun. The 27-year-old group's recent U.S. debut, ¡Parranda! (Smithsonian Folkways), layers propulsive polyrhythms with punchy, guttural trumpets and trombones and giddy unison vocals, including a four-member female chorus. Though solo voices deliver the melodies on a handful of songs, for the most part all the singers rip through them together—sometimes these big choruses make me wish for the extra personality you can get from a single lead voice, but it's hard to argue with a effervescent spirit of celebration they create. —Peter Margasak Tanzanian musician Msafiri Zawose, who plays the traditional music of the Gogo people, headlines.

Price: $10 suggested donation

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