Colombia ranks second in the Americas for forest cover and second worldwide in overall biodiversity, but the country is paying an unexpected environmental price for peace: The 2016 accord between government and guerrillas made more land accessible to exploitation, and as a result deforestation has increased dramatically. Government, community organizations and NGOs are battling to protect the trees; meanwhile, every popular movement needs … More Yapunto!
Before you process a single word, there is poetry in the sound of Mónica Giraldo’s voice and guitar—a natural healing force akin to a magnificent sunset or refreshing breeze. As the lyrics flow the sensation deepens with joys, challenges, dreams and truths that both surprise and evoke recognition. Al Oído – The Best of Mónica Giraldo includes songs from the Bogotá-born, Latin Grammy-nominated … More Al Oído: The Best of Mónica Giraldo
Accustomed to naming each of his albums after one of its standout tracks, Fonseca switched gears when he realized his newest release would coincide with his wife’s giving birth. Thus did Agustín become his eighth baby and also his third. It may be a cliché to paint a successful artist in the rosy light of his songs, but the Colombian singer-songwriter embodies his music in myriad ways, composing a portrait of dedication to family, art and society. His causes … More Fonseca: Agustín
They began in struggle, illegal immigrants from Colombia and Argentina playing their music on the streets of Barcelona. Fifteen years later, Che Sudaka has played more than 1,500 shows in 45 countries, etching a profile as exuberant, socially conscious, dance provoking, independent thinking exponents of cumbia-ska-punk. Following a tradition of controlled chaos, never doing just … More Che Sudaka: Almas Rebeldes
Shakira’s eleventh studio album, launched in 2017, showed her in peak form—bearing in mind that with Grammys galore, career record sales over 60 million and YouTube views topping 12 billion, her “peak” has an altitude mere superstars can’t reach. But the El Dorado World Tour scheduled to begin last November was delayed seven months by a vocal cord hemorrhage, and as the Colombian singer-songwriter wondered if she would ever perform … More Shakira: El Dorado
As a lyricist, Juanes has been compared to John Lennon, as a humanitarian to Bono. He has sold 15 million albums and has honors to spare. So what more does the Colombian singer-songwriter aspire to? Well, there was his boyhood dream of becoming an astronaut… His latest album—marrying guasca and cumbia to classic rock—is an elegant, passionate collection of a dozen love songs; based on music alone, they rank among his best. It also … More Juanes: Mis Planes Son Amarte
Listening Post 39. Fonseca became one of Latin America’s leading singer-songwriters using an explosive mix of vallenato and cumbia—Colombia’s traditional folk styles—with tropipop. On Conexión, he offers a riveting pan-Latin blend. In Ya No Mi Faltas (I Don’t Miss You Anymore), a ranchera-tango hybrid co-written with the Argentine artist Claudia Brant, he recites a sardonic message to a former flame: “I get that you’re no longer with me … More Fonseca: Conexión
For two decades, Wilfran Castillo has been the preferred composer for many of Latin America’s most popular singers. With Desigual (Unequal), the Colombian musician demonstrates that he can not only write songs that trip well from the lips of other artists, but also blend his own tenor superbly with their voices—whether those voices soar or quaver. A mix of romantic ballads and social commentary, the album’s nine duets and four solos … More Wilfran Castillo: Desigual