Cumbia Is The New Reggae.

By next summer there will be a cumbia show at Hollywod Bowl. Mark my words.

With the popularity of Very Be Careful, Santa Cecilia and Buyepongo among MANY other groups, LA is shaping up for cumbia to be the next flavor to blow up.

I know cumbia clubs have existed for a while, so have their artists, but the above mentioned are not playing in exclusive cumbia spaces. They are playing to billingual Chicano/a crowds at local hip spots as well as Grand Performances. On the radio Jeremy Sole on KCRW drops a cumbia like he does at his weekly party, deep in the westside, Afro Funke. The beat is easy to catch, most anyone can dance to it and its plain fun.

Some Cumbia has an electronic element to it which is being played in tracks such as this one by Zizek

8 thoughts on “Cumbia Is The New Reggae.

  1. Look up the club Tormenta Tropical and their resident DJs…. very similar sound, with other mash ups. I have a CD I could share with you….

  2. i think in the case of VBC i think their involvement with punk way back probably has helped them to think outside of whatever given pigeonhole they might’ve been shoved into because of their focus on vallenato. same with ollin, a band ricky and i both played in and whose rotating members have long been a kind of who’s who of east l.a. punk/hardcore. we just played son jarochos to the same crowds in the same clubs we always played…..ricky and his brother are two of the cooleest dudes i’ve known…..

  3. “The beat is easy to catch, most anyone can dance to it and its plain fun”

    I think that reason alone is why a lot of bands are quick to add that element into their music. Aside from the fact that most of us grew up on cumbias, it’s infectious.

  4. I love how a cumbia beat can lend itself to the whole emotional spectrum of song from a heartbreaking love lament to a festive party song -and all totally booty shaking danceable.
    Unlike Salsa and other musica tropical, which seem to me to be somewhat on the snooty side, cumbia is totally the people’s music.

  5. Yes if you ever get a chance club tormenta tropical is amazing. i went earlier this year to see one of my favorite new dj’s ghislain poirier spin there and man one of the cats of the tormenta tropical crew was killing it with the cumbia and cumbia mash ups including one with old dirty bastard. we had so much fun and did not stop dancing. we were dripping with sweat.

  6. Good post! I love the blog! Keeps me in touch with the L.A. that I miss so dearly. Come to Bs As and I’ll take you to the Zizek club!

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