An Indigenous Mixtape from Lima, Peru

TED Talks Daily


Basically this week's episode is a catch wa language mix tape and this mix tape starts with track. One introducing librado. Yeah that's clearly now my voice. I'm getting mixed eight hosting help from my friend. Dj just john. Okay here we go now. That's lebron connie emceeing at the national theatre here in lima. This past february he's rapping in a mix of spanish and catch wa if you haven't heard of catch wa that's kind of the point. It's the most widely spoken indigenous language and latin america about ten million people speak it and liberal bringing it to people in a whole new way. His mc name librado. Connie means i am a free man and a call and response you hear throughout his concerts is catch wa is resistance. I met librado while in lima peru. And i was in lima on this. Totally non far-flung gig filming young rappers and beat makers which have been doing on and off for the past seven years all over the world priscilla. Anyway i've always been interested in ways. Music leads to cultural mashups like catch one hip hop and how that intersects with identity and the way people feel about themselves and when it comes to documenting hip hop it's always a cool story when different languages and traditions get mixed into the music but it's kind of hard to tell what that mixing means. What does it mean. When someone is wrapping in their ancestral language does that relate to a language living or dying and house. All that culturally significant politically significant. When does it lead to change on. Its face it might seem like the fight for catch. Wise is about lima's pride in their past and that's true but there's another crucial thing at stake here. It's the ability for indian culture to survive and to evolve into the future so to get the significance of what liberals doing we need to start with some background on ketchaoua. But you don't hear much catch. What outside of the countryside in peru ever since colonisation spanish has been the dominant language of government. Business education. Really life in general. And there's of course all kinds of cultural implications with that as well in the broncos music though you don't hear any of that higher he swapping between languages constantly and letting catch while on hooks his call and responses. He's young but he's like a classic ninety s hip hop head and when we hung out. He seemed really comfortable in his skin and sincere about everything. Oh and heads up. We were talking spanish most of this interview. So you'll hear some overdub. English shorter track to deepen the andean bronx. This is teach them what either made from purple corn. It's very delicious from corn. You can even make teacher. They hold a credible. We're walking down along. Walk walking for a little bit. We are eating a kind of Proven popcorn and we're drinking a purple corn based drink. Ginger morava balmy out here. It's not that hot again. Noisy sirens is a cultural hub for peruvians. It's like they're la and new york matching into one about ten million people live here and the population's growing we're walking through downtown. Lima librado told me that when he went to new york to perform for the first time in two thousand eighteen a lot of what he saw reminded him of home unusual ways. You told the crowd that he realized he was like a rapper from the indian. Bronx they loved it. You know. he's a rapper. So he's good with metaphor and there's something very hip hop about his light experience. He grew up in a world that was hostile towards identity specifically his indian catch. Wasp became identity twenty mike cornell so librado wrapping and catch wa flowed great to my ear as someone who didn't have a lot of linguistic and cultural context. It's just good sound but sometimes locals were shocked to hear the language mixed into hip hop track three welcome to the donkey belly sky. And what are those. Locals is my friend oscar durand he's producing and basically co hosting this episode with me. Oscar grew up in lima in the eighties. And i left peru in two thousand two to study and live abroad as a photo journalist. The first time that occurred without those music. I was surprised you know he was not the first time i catch wa. I heard it when i was in crew. Obviously but it was the first time that i hear someone rapping ikeja and he was a new context for language at the energy. So i knew that. I had to meet this guy told me the story man. I wasn't there so you know. I already heard about him. So i was really curious about his because as a journalist i have my my antennas. You always scanning for interesting stories to last time when i was visiting peru i was there for work. I send a message of media and she told me. have this concert. why don't you come. I couldn't make it but him and his band were playing this rehearsal space so i just went and then we start chatting and it was just such great energy because i felt like i knew these guys forever and then they start playing and it was just the most amazing experiences having peru because he had this concert just for myself. But what was it about him that shocked locals. I mean there's great musicians in peru for sure. So what was it about librado. That made him stand out. Well its first surprising to catch on. Because when i was growing up catcher was really around me in school. Remember catcher being mentioned in our history class when we were talking about the inca empire our glory days but those days are long gone and many people would not associate catcher with innovation or success.

Coming up next