¡Un Saludo! Voice, Memory, and Migration in Cumbia Sonidera

Conversation and listening with Jace Clayton (Dj Rupture), Alexandra Lippman (Xandão) & Alejandro Aviles (Sonido Kumbala)

December 16, 2017, 8pm

UnionDocs, 322 Union Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11211

$10 | Tickets here

Cumbia sonidera is Mexico’s bass-heavy, sound-system reinterpretation of Afro-Colombian folk music. During performances, the sonideros (DJs) mix songs and get on the mic to recite fans’ dedications to people and places. These shout-outs (called saludos) trace an auditory archive of memory, migration, and longing across the US-Mexico border. Hosted by Jace Clayton, who features a chapter on NYC cumbia and Sonido Kumbala in his book Uproot: Travels in 21st-Century Music and Digital Culture, this evening will use tracks from NYC- and LA-cumbia sonidera compilations by Sonido Kumbala and Xandão to spark discussion on the roles of the sonidero, immigrant media systems, and translation.

Afterwards, stick around for the Annual UNDO Holiday Party [ Deep Freeze Disco: ¡ Un Saludo ! ] – DJ sets from Kumbala, Xandão , and DJ /rupture!


Papi Juice throws the most poppin underground tropical queer party in Brooklyn and DJs Oscar Nñ and Adam R. have been touring around the country building bridges and expanding intentional spaces for QTPOC to party together. They play banging global club music and they’ll be performing at the Que Bajo Barrioteca Tropical May 9th at Verboten in Brooklyn.

Get your tickets at http://nyc.redbullmusicacademy.com/que-bajo-barrioteca-tropical

I was recently a guest on Impose Mag’s Audio Imposition show, where the host Eric Phipps and I talked a bit about what’s next with Old Money, Shamans in Peru, and more. I got pretty hype in particular when the question of early influences came up, because it made me think back to old Kayslay CDs with freestyles by an up and coming rapper named Grafh – a cat who reminded you at every turn that it’s spelled with an “f” and not a “p” – perhaps correctly anticipating the importance of a Googleable name.


Brooklyn Graffiti

(I painted this over the weekend.)

It’s me, Iswayski. This time around we’re going to dive into some New York rap.

In general, hip hop is in a good place right now. Whether you’re looking for some ignant club joints, deft lyricism, or skater comedy, it’s probably available. There’s a gang of different styles floating around out there. And here in NYC, things are in a similar state. You’ve got the turnt coke boy rap of French Montana, some pretty flacko rare shot from A$AP Mob, and the late 90s throwback flavas of Pro Era. It seems we’re finally starting to climb out from under the weight that years of tradition and hierarchy that the genre’s birthplace had imposed on the game. So let’s go over a couple lesser known recent efforts.


(Photo of Shaggy by Daniel Boud)

Yes, yes, it’s time for more Iswayski. Let’s get into some dancehall this time around. Since we’re on that New York Tropical tip at DA, I’ll zero in on the local stuff. Jamaica is obviously where it’s at, but there’s plenty of tuff sounds coming out of NYC. And since it was recently the 20th anniversary of Flatbush-bred Shaggy’s “Oh Carolina” version, it’s fitting moment.