Aurelio: Lándini

October 25, 2015

aurelio2Smooth Landing

Listening Post 18. The Garifuna people emerged on the Caribbean island of St. Vincent when African slaves intermarried with Carib and Arawak Indians. Deported to Roatán, off the coast of Honduras, they eventually spread to the Central American mainland. With their hybrid heritage—physical appearance closer to their African roots and language derived from Island Carib—they created a rich musical culture. Aurelio Martinez, born into a family of musicians, began playing professionally in his teens; the 12 tracks of Lándini are steeped in the life of his village. Traditional Garifuna drums, maracas and claves breezily accompany his voice and guitars, while his gentle rhythms and melodies swing between celebratory and pensive. Themes include the struggle to make a living, sibling rivalry, trouble with women and medicinal use of ginger. The title song Lándini (Landing) describes a village meeting place where residents dock their boats (video 1). Nando (Leonardo), co-written by Aurelio and his mother, chides unfaithful women (video 2). In Sañanaru (I Can’t Handle Her), the narrator complains about a difficult woman and wonders if he can simply park her like a canoe. Milaguru (The Miracle) is based on a ferry disaster that killed all aboard. Joy and sorrow are part of everyone’s life, and Aurelio generously invites all to see how the world looks through the eyes of a people worth knowing. (Real World Productions/Stonetree Records)






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