Soul Jazz Records Presents: The Black Caribs Of Belize - Various Artists on Import 2LP
Garifuna: Ancestral Travelers of the Carribean!
In 2010, Soul Jazz Records embarked on their latest unique recording project, traveling to the Caribbean as they continue to document musical hot spots around the world. This venture was to record the unique Afro-percussive music of the Black Caribs of Belize. Belize (or British Honduras as it was formerly known) was the last British colony in Central America and was celebrating its 30th year of independence from Britain.
Soul Jazz Records traveled to Dangriga, epicentre of Garifuna culture, on the Caribbean coast of Belize, to produce this album with Black Carib singers, drummers and musicians. The West African ancestry of the Black Caribs is a link to the other Afro-musics of the Caribbean and Latin America - the massive drum groups of the Samba Schools of Brazil, the Voodoo poly-rhythmical drums of Haiti, Afro-Cuban Salsa and the sacred Bata drums of Santeria, as well as the hypnotic rhythm of Nigeria's Afro-Beat and other African musical forms.
The album features the many different styles of Black Carib (or Garifuna) music. The most famous and popular form is the punta, a dance style that was updated in the 1970s when local artists electrified the sound to create punta rock. The most successful groups - Pen Cayetano with the Original Turtle Shell Band, and more recently Andy Palacio – were the first artists to bring Garifuna music to a wider audience. Another artist, Aurelio Martinez, is doing the same thing for the Garifuna community in Honduras.