Totó La Momposina, the original "Queen of Cumbia”, has had a career spanning almost 60 years, and continues to perform all around the world at the age of 78. The singer reached international recognition in the early nineties when she released the classic album La Candela Viva on Peter Gabriel’s Real World Records.
Working with legendary pop/rock producer Phil Ramone (Paul Simon, Frank Sinatra, Bob Dylan), Totó la Momposina y sus Tambores delivered a live performance at Real World Studios as part of Peter Gabriel’s famous Recording Week project, which brought together singers and musicians from all over the world to record and collaborate together.
The resulting album, which was completed in 1992 with producers John Hollis, Richard Blair and Marco Vinicio Oyaga, is still heralded as the Colombian singer’s most vital work, including iconic songs such as ‘El Pescador’, ‘La Candela Viva’ and ‘Curura’.
Totó’s life has been dedicated to representing the music of Colombia’s Caribbean coastline, where African, Indigenous Indian and Spanish cultures mingle to create a unique musical tradition. Her music, driven by voices, flute and percussion, presents three distinct musical styles—Tambores, Sextetos and Gaitas.
Totó’s records have become firm favourites in the hip-hop and EDM scenes, being routinely sampled by heavy-weights such as Timbaland, Michel Kleis, Manu Chao, and most recently Jay-Z, who sampled ‘La Verdolaga’ on his 2017 Grammy nominated album 4:44.
The new EP, Fuego, features four previously unreleased songs from the original 1991/1992 sessions, which were discovered in 2015 when the original master tapes were restored and digitally remastered.
“She's a majestic, powerful and versatile singer ...with sturdy Spanish-influenced ballads and dance songs.” THE GUARDIAN
“An ingenious, and justified, remastering project.” ★★★★★ SONGLINES (UK)
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Totó La Momposina’s entire life has been dedicated to representing the music of Colombia’s Caribbean coastline. As a singer,
dancer and teacher she embodies that fertile place where Colombia’s African, Indigenous Indian and Spanish cultures mingle to create a unique musical tradition. Totó is not only its greatest interpreter, but also a restless innovator....more
At six songs and 22 minutes, “De Bassari Togo” is a short record with a lot of punch. It’s also a vital collection of fiery afro-rock for historians and music fans alike. Bandcamp Album of the Day Dec 18, 2018