In the case of human trafficking by the colonial powers, African captives were carried away by sailing ships made of wood, to the ‘European New World’ as free labour forces. They were also used as fixtures to reclaim lands for foreign investors. 

Ripped off and dragged away in chains, abused, oppressed, and exploited. The few opportunities allowed for the African descendants in the diaspora, to retain and maintain cultural identity and cohesion, was the practice of music, and rituals of spirituality through religious faith.

The intensified creative beauty, and magic of the African polyrhythms, syncopation, and specific half-tone melodies generated an indelible fascination, and impact on the musicians’ oppressors. 

African Islands

Negro Spirituals, Blues, Jazz, Latin and Reggae, are known genres initiated and emanated from the African musicians. After years of continued practice and performances. In time, African inspired rhythms, became essential ingredients for the overall mode of European American modern popular music.

We could say, the suffering caused by the Exodus of African people from their place of origin, to the traumatic experiences in the Diaspora. Turned into exciting stories of cultural success, with its own niche in global world music. 

Latino Music 1950s – 2000

The socio-geographics of African Latino music, is in the regions of Spanish, and Portuguese speaking nations of South America, and to a lesser extent, the French speaking Caribbean islands in the western hemisphere.

Caribbean Islands

Dizzy Gillespie and Mario Bauza, in Cab Calloway big band orchestra in the 1940s, broaden the appeal of ‘Latino Jazz’. Luciano ‘Chano’ Pozo, popular song, ‘Manteca’ is an excellent example of authentic African Cuban Jazz music. 

‘The Girl from Ipanema’ Getz & Gilberto version, placed ‘Bossa Nova’ on the world map in 1963, even though the song was well known, among Latino communities for nearly a decade.

There are many African Latino music styles and genre, a few of these are Merengue, Samba, Rumba, Bossa Nova, Lambada, Cumbia, Bachata.

Veteran Musicians

The successful ‘Samba’ movement in the 1970s, exploded commercially around the world. The new styles of Latino music that emerged from the United States of America, can be traced, and tracked to Spanish speaking Cuba, Puerto Rico, and the French speaking Caribbean Islands.

When ‘Buena Vista Social Club’ was launched, groups of rediscovered musicians, many of whom were making music from the early 20th century, the distribution of their music new and old, assisted in their recognition and qualitative appreciation world-wide. Today, the music from the Latino region is still kicking, alive, and in good health.

Latino Music in U.S.A.

A Few Notable Performers

Chucho Valdez & Grupo Irakere, Emiliano Salvador, Omara Portuondo, Orchestra Los Van Van, Bobby Carcasses, Richardo Eddy Martinez, Pedro Luis Ferrer.

Quinteto mondongo, Miguelito Valdes, Carlos Valdez, Chico O’Farill, Eva Ayllon, Ariana DeBose, Amara La Negra, La Lupe, Jon Secada, Sabi, Melody Thorton.

Daddy Yankee, Emeline Michel, Sweet Mickey, Jean-Luc Alger, Mama Sissoko, Chico Alvarez, Mama Keitha, Pape Fall, Laba Sosseh, Ana Firmino, Cesario Evora, Maria Alice, Dulce Matias, Kali, Zin.

Candido Camero, Eddie Palmieri, Mongo Santamaria, Tito Puente, Idania Valdes, Bebo Valdes, Aldo Lopez, Gavilan Valdes, Tata Guines, Gillermo Barreto, Gustav Tamayo, Jose Fajardo, Gato Barbieri, Luis Mangual, Eddie Martinez. Contributor – Sancho Perez