Ghetto Kumbé’s concept is as powerful as it is simple: a journey to the rhythmic Afro-Caribbean roots of Colombia, fuelled by the hypnotic power of African house beats.
With just three members, El Guajiro, Chongo and Doctor Keyta, their stage set-up and aesthetic are minimal yet potent. They present themselves as a psychedelic African tribe from the future. On stage, they wear neon tribal masks and outfits.
Ghetto Kumbé’s music is a unique blend of traditional West African rhythms and Afro-Colombian rhythms such as Cumbia, Bullerengue, Son Palenquero, Chande and the Chalupa de rio.
The Colombian alegre drum and African djembe played by Chongo and the dundun played by Doctor Keyta weave together evocative drum harmonics while El Guajiro mixes electronic beats and samples.
The cross-pollinated result provokes an instant impulse to move, and a trance-like musical voyage of the mind.
Yes, when you step into the world of Ghetto Kumbé you step into a ritual where you can dance around an imagined fire while calling for old spirits of parties with strobes and neon lights. Sounds intriguing, doesn’t it?