In the Land of Cocoa...

Tierra del Cacao
Music and Dance


01. El Saqueo (The revolt) - Villagers of La Sabana & Alexis Laja - 4:11
02. Ce Un Mes Que No Te Veo (A month has passed without seeing you) - Villagers of La Sabana - 4:14
03. San Juan / Gangue / Macizón - Villagers of La Sabana - 10:05
04. Cantica - Villagers of Bobures - 4:08
05. Ajé / Benito / Ajé - Villagers of Bobures - 4:20
06. Dale (Do it) - Villagers of Chuao - 1:28
07. Petra de las Marías - Villagers of Chuao - 2:47
08. Tema de los Cimarrones (The maroons from Chuao) - Villagers of Chuao - 1:17
09. Marisela - Agrupación Los Romeros’ - 3:22
10. La Estrella del Paraíso (The star from paradise) - Agrupación Los Tambores Quimbanganos - 6:53
11. Juan Rebolledo - Inocencio Caraballo - 3:46
12. Tonadas de Quichimba - Villagers of Curiepe - 5:28
13. Carángano - Villagers of Curiepe - 0:48
14. Tonadas de Quitiplás - Villagers of Curiepe - 5:53
15. Marimba - Villagers of Curiepe - 1:40
16. Ta Bueno Mayoral It's alright overseer) - Villagers of Curiepe - 4:21
17. Tonadas de Culo 'e Puya - Villagers of Curiepe - 4:10
18. Barlovento e' Tierra del Cacao (Barlovento is the land of cacao) - Villagers of Curiepe - 4:36




The African heritage is very diluted in Venezuela, but the 'black' drum dances are a big hit nowadays. This CD presents the little known music of six small and isolated black villages. Characteristic is the inventive use of polyrhythms and a general emphasis on rhythm as the most aesthetic organizing principle. Other characteristics are the use of call-and-response patterns and repetition of phrases. Instruments used are mainly all sorts of drums and percussion instruments, and some wind and string instruments. The 24-page booklet contains extensive notes on instruments and musical styles.

    "...If you want to party across the border, go to Venezuela [...]. Heavy, rattling drums and possessed wind players, vocalists who are echoing the melody in a frenzied variation. This is music that makes you go beside yourself, without using any means whatsoever..."

    René van Peer, Wereldmuziek Update, summer 1999

  "A CD, which is indispensible to approach and to comprehend a music that respires Africa and transpires Latin America. Essential."

    Etienne Bours, Trad' Magazine, July/August 1999

“Venezuela is in a league of its own,” said Gary Guittard, a California chocolate maker who buys Venezuelan cacao. “It takes years to develop the uniqueness of the best cacao, maybe 20 or 30 years, maybe 100, so other nations need to catch up.” 
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