2013, Fri, Jul 19

Mama Julia Y Los Sonidos Ambulantes

Afro-Colombian ambulations

Mama Julia y los Sonidos Ambulantes | © Damien Lepretre

Mama Julia y los Sonidos Ambulantes | © Damien Lepretre

A negra fina is a Colombian woman who manages well in life despite, or because of, her dark skin. “Negra Fina” is also the current single by Sonidos Ambulantes, and could even describe the singer Yahaira Mina, alias Mama Julia, herself. Indeed, she achieved notable successes last year with her young band from the city of Cali, placing their single in the Radio Nacional top 20, playing important national festivals, and journeying to perform in India. They have won audiences over with emphatically bouncy, marimba de chonta-driven Afro-Colombian rhythms into which they alternatingly weave rap, singing, and Cuban and indigenous echoes. The subject of their “roving sound” is the life of the common people in the streets, and their performances have the mobile exuberance of a block party.