The Afro-Colombian jazz band, La Boa, is set for the release of its third album – Por Eso/Máquina EP.
The 10-piece jazz band, with heavy influences from the Antilles islands in the Caribbean, has previously released two albums, including 2015’s Animal and 2017’s Volumen.
The band led by Daniel Michel, is based in Colombia’s capital city, Bogota, and has successfully attracted fans as Latin musicians Pedro Ojeda and Mario Galeano. Other members of the band include the vocalist Deimar ‘Pio’ Molina, percussionist David Cantoni, who spent 4 years in Cuba studying Afro-Cuban percussion and Diana Sanmiguel who studied traditional Colombian sounds.
The jazz band brings a combination of jazz, Afrobeat and electronic music; its Afro-Colombian sound is a reflection of Colombian history. Centuries ago, African slaves replaced Native American workers at Colombian plantations and mines. Upon getting their freedom, these Africans stayed in the country and became citizens, bringing elements of their culture with them.
Today, Colombia is a country with the largest populations of Africans in the west, ensuring a cultural connection between continent and country. For La Boa, which in full means La Bogota Orquestra Afrobeat or The Bogota Afrobeat Orchestra, the connection is explicit musically, for example in its homage to Afrobeat creator, Fela Kuti.
Speaking about La Boa’s relationship to Kuti, Michel told the press In Africa that the Nigerian maestro “mixed traditional Nigerian sounds with funk and our music takes the traditional Afro-Colombian Caribbean sounds that have permeated Colombia and mixes it with funk. Like Fela, our lyrics are socially conscious. We try to raise awareness of social issues and injustices taking place.”
The Por Eso/Máquina EP will be released digitally by the Bogota-Berlin record label Big In Japan later in June. The label is known for promoting electronic music from Latin America. They search for interesting music that mixes folkloric and traditional sounds with contemporary production.