World Cafe

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Latin Roots - Catalina Marie Johnson

This session of World Cafe’s Latin Roots music series is hosted by Chicago-based journalist Catalina Maria Johnson. She writes in Spanish and English for publications such as HOY, Revista Contratiempo, Gozamos and Nat Geo Music and is a regular radio personality and hosts/producer for the radio program Beat Latino, which airs in Chicago, Mexico City and Berlin.

More than just a style of music, Rumba is a unique cultural blend of rhythm, dance, and poetry. Cuban rumba begins with a chant upon which different elements are added. It is an important part of Afro-Cuban culture, and in its earliest forms served as a form of personal entertainment - the style was played in backyards or on the streets with family and friends - and often times an outlet for protest. The music is held together by a clave beat and melds congolese drumming with traditional call-and-response in either flamenco or Moorish styles. Cuban Rumba laid the foundation for many other distinct styles of Latin music and informs modern Latin hip-hop and salsa. Las Krudas are an Austin-based hip-hop act that incorporate many cuban rumba elements.

Muñequitos de Matanzas  / D'Palo pa Rumba  /  D' palo pa rumba 3:43
Pedro Martinez Group  / Que Palo  3:21
Las Krudas / Vamo a vence'  / Hip Hop Cubano CD2  4:05

Spotify Playlist for Cuban Rumba:
Toca la Clave by Kevin A. Davis from Rumba With Soul
Toca con clave by Los Papines from Los Papines siguen OK
Nadie Se Salva De La Rumba by Celia Cruz from Greatest Hits
D' palo pa rumba by Munequitos de Matanazas  from D' palo pa rumba
Not Fade Away by Ned Sublette from Cowboy Rumba  
A La Rumba by Jane Bunnett from Cuban Odyssey 
De La Rumba Al Cha-Cha-Cha  by X Alfonso from Homenaje
Superfinos Negros by Freehole Negro from Superfinos Negro
Que Palo by Pedrito Martinez Group from ?
Vamo a vence' by Las Krudas from Hip-Hop Cubano CD