Origin: Pasto, Colombia Genre: Andean Fusion On stage: 8
Label: Independent Territory: Europe

The boldest fusion of the Colombian Andes

“This ensemble from Colombia knows how to perform the fusion in multiple ways” Christoph Borkowsky – Piranha

Bambarabanda, Colombia: Live at Latinoamericando Milan 2014

Guagüita Cuna / Bambarabanda

Bambarabanda-Live in Perú

Bambarabanda has had a highly prolific season. The renowned German record label, Piranha Records, selected Bambarabanda’s Spanish-language version of the song “Gloomy Sunday” for its “Hungarian Noir – A Tribute To The Gloomy Sunday” compilation which will be released on May 13. This compilation is completely dedicated to the best versions of this Hungarian tune, which in its era was banned because of its suicide-inducing lyrics and then made famous by singers such as Billie Holiday.

In December 2015, Bambarabanda released the single and video for “Guagüita cuna”, a song which is an Amazonian pasacalle, Everybody danced to this tune during the “Blacks and Whites’ Carnaval” (Carnaval de Negros y Blancos), the largest festivity of its kind in Pasto, Colombia, the land’s most southernmost city which is situated at the foot of the Galeras volcano.

On the other side, Bambarabanda hit the ground running this year! The band began 2016 by releasing the new single and video for the song “Sra. Sociedad”, in collaboration with Puerto Candelaria, another amazing Colombian band. By their own definition, they have termed it a strange cumbia.

Bambarabanda was formed in 1999 at the most southern capital city of Colombia, Pasto, well-known for its Carnival of Blacks and Whites. The band members met each other at “Etica”, a club in Pasto, where a group of young people without any academic music knowledge, used to meet to explore new sounds and to play percussions. The place was always packed. It also had a very bad reputation between the most conservative society of Pasto. It was in this context that there came out a lot of shouts, rhymes, noise, protest, complaints, the Andean tradition, and a very Pasto Hip Hop (“Pastuso” Hip Hop). It was against this background that Bambarabanda arose as a mixture of irreverent words, genres, and colourful party.

The first compositions of Bambarabanda were inspired by the social context at that time. They say: «The lyrics of the songs like “El Hueco”, “Despliega”, “Pide”, “Desastre” reflect the Colombian social situation as well as our own experiences in our neighborhood. Our sound was highly influenced by the bands we used to listen to at “Etica” Club: La Maldita Vecindad, El Gran Silencio, Molotov, Mano Negra, Control Machete, Café Tacvba, Red Hot Chilli Peppers, Cypress Hill”, and, on the other hand by very well-respected traditional music groups from our region like “La Ronda Lírica, Los Alegres de Genoy, El trío Fronterizo”, among others».

Bambarabanda says: «We need to express the thoughts of our Nariño region, our southern art and also our being Colombians. Our perseverance and conviction on this project led us to research and explore other aspects of the performing arts. We have come a long way of 14 years with the contribution of many others that have been involved in our project».

Bambarabanda’s music is a very unique mix of genres. They say: «Our sound is the result of global music influences merged with the rhythms of the traditional music of our city of Pasto and our region of Nariño. This blend gives special musical tones to our music: a sound that reminds our carnival as well as a musical assimilation that breaks the established genres».

At the present Bambarabanda is leading a deeply research about the roots of the ancestral and traditional music of Latin America that have stood in the Andean Mountain range. They are working to get a highest-level vocal performance with fine melodies. They are looking for a wider and cleaner sound without borders. They want to keep their original and unique fusion: A global sound that identifies Bambarabanda. They have already recorded new songs that will be ready in few months.