Thursday, July 1, 2010

Espiritu Andino

Espiritu Andino
Another discovery of culture in New York's subway

I wouldn't normally recommend visiting Grand Central Station on a Friday during rush hour. I'm not a crowd person, so the mass of moving humanity in there at peak hours tends to put me on edge, but on the other hand, if I hadn't been there at that very time, I'd likely never have been introduced to the music of Espiritu Andino. (The video isn't mine, btw, but was taken a little over a year ago.)



Espiritu Andino are dedicated to both preserving Inca musical traditions and bringing them forward into the present and future, and their website documents dances and musical instruments along with their own material. The Inca Empire in its heyday covered much of South America, including Peru, Bolivia and Ecuador in the Andean regions. (Espiritu Andino are from Peru.) Incan music uses a pentatonic scale, and typical arrangements include a mixture of both indigenous and Spanish-influenced instrumentation, its pulse a distinctive and driving syncopated beat.

To those elements, Espiritu Andino add jazzy solos and polished performance - even when its smack in the middle of Grand Central at rush hour.

You can check out a studio version of the song here

Espiritu Andino routinely play in and around the New York area - you can check out their schedule here - and CDs are available for sale on their website too.

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