Tuesday, July 23, 2019, 7:00pm-8:00pm (Note: Evening Concert)
The Arizona Senior Academy Building
Meet “Tradiciones” – Jesús Garcia and Jacobo Ramirez from Mexico, Miguel Molina and Oscar and Andrés Infante from Peru, and Dena Cowan and Elena Martinez from Tucson. This diverse group of musicians will entertain us with folk music from the Altiplano of the Andes mountain countries – Peru, Bolivia and Ecuador – as well as traditional music from Paraguay, Colombia, Venezuela and Mexico that has been influenced by Andean styles and instrumentation.
Their range of styles includes Musica Criolla, which has a strong Spanish influence, Afro-Peruvian rhythms from Peru’s coastal areas, which were heavily influenced by the slave culture, and Chicha, the style of Peruvian Cumbia from the Amazon with its distinct Colombian rhythms.
While the band uses mainstream instruments like guitar, violin, flute, accordion and percussion, it is the inclusion of traditional instruments that give the music a unique sound. These include Kenas and Zampoñas – bamboo flutes that resemble pan pipes and produce ethereal tones; Charangos – mandolin-like miniature guitars made with armadillo shells whose very high pitch complements flutes and percussion; Guancaras – small lightweight percussion instruments that are played with a drumstick and are hung vertically from the body by a rope; and Bombos – a smaller version of the European bass drum.
“Tradiciones” got started over ten years ago when musicians from Tucson’s Peruvian community connected with fellow immigrants from Mexico and other Latin American countries. Their music-making was a part of social gatherings with family and friends, and created unique multi-cultural bonds. You might have encountered them at local events such as Tucson Meet Yourself and the All Souls Procession, or even community gigs such as birthday parties. They serve as ambassadors for the Peruvian culture and presence in the greater Tucson community.
Written by Roxy Mitchem-Horn, Academy Village Volunteer