Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Examples Of Traditional Afro-Ecuadorian Bomba Music & Dance

Edited by Azizi Powell

This post presents information about and examples of traditional Afro-Ecuadorian Bomba music and dance. Ecuador is a country in South America.

The content of this post is provided for cultural, entertainment, and aesthetic purposes.

All copyrights remain with their owners.

Thanks to all those who keep alive traditional Afro-Ecuadorian culture. Thanks all those who are e featured in these videos and thanks to those who are quoted in this post and the publishers of these examples on YouTube.

Note: Ecuador is a country in South America.

"Afro-Ecuadorians are an ethnic group in Ecuador who are descendants of formerly enslaved Africans brought by the Spanish during their conquest of Ecuador from the Incas. They make up from 4% to 6% of Ecuador's population.[1][2]

Ecuador has a population of about 1,120,000 descendants from African people. The Afro-Ecuadorian culture is found primarily in the country's northwest coastal region. Africans form a majority (70%) in the province of Esmeraldas and the Valle del Chota in the Imbabura Province. They can be also found in Quito and Guayaquil. Their best known cultural influence known outside of Ecuador is a distinctive kind of marimba music...

Most Afro-Ecuadorians are the descendants of enslaved Africans which originally arrived in Ecuador from the early 16th century. In 1533, the first enslaved Africans reached Ecuador in Quito when a slave ship heading to Peru was stranded off the Ecuadorian coast. The enslaved Africans escaped and established maroon settlements in Esmeraldas, which became a safe haven as many Africans fleeing slave conditions either escaped to there or were forced to live there. Eventually, they started moving from their traditional homeland and were settling everywhere in Ecuador.

Racism deeply ingrained from the Spanish colonial era is still found; Afro-Ecuadorians are strongly discriminated against by the mestizo and criollo populations.[citation needed] Poverty is rampant amongst them. Many Afro-Ecuadorians have participated in sports, for instance playing with the Ecuadorian national football team. After slavery was abolished in 1851, Africans became marginalized in Ecuador , dominated by the plantation owners.[3]

Afro-Ecuadorians live all over the country but there are two places of historic presence which are Esmeraldas province and the Chota Valley in Imbabura province. There is a strong presence in Quito and Guayaquil which have neighborhoods with high Afro-Ecuadorian populations and also Ibarra....

...Marimba music comes from Esmeraldas, and gets its name from the prominent use of marimbas, along with drums and other instruments specific to this region such as the bombo, the cununo and the wasa. Sometimes this music is played in religious ceremonies, as well as in celebrations and parties. It features call and response chanting along with the music. Some of the rhythms associated with it are currulao, bambuco and andarele.”...
Balancing a bottle on the head is a traditional feature of Ecuadorian Bomba dancing. The custom of dancing while balancing a bottle on one's head is documented as occurring in some African American plantation dances. It appears that this custom-or the custom of dancing while balancing some other object on one's head-is an African Diaspora tradition that comes from certain African cultures.* While most of the YouTube videos of Bomba dancing show some of the women dancing with a bottle on their head, a photograph of a man dancing with a bottle on his head is shown at 2:53 in the Example #3 below.

*Click for a pancocojams post that includes more videos of dancers balancing an object on their head.

These examples are presented in chronological order based on their posting date on YouTube, with the oldest examples given first etc.

Example #1: Bomba del Valle del Chota Ecuador


Esta es una representacion afro-ecuatoriana del hermoso valle caliente del Chota, que esta ubicado en plena cordillera andina del Ecuador
Google Translate from Spanish to English "This is a representation of Afro-Ecuadorian Hot beautiful Chota Valley, which is located in the heart of the Andes Ecuador"

Example #2: Bomba - Música afroecuatoriana

No name given, Uploaded on Nov 17, 2008

Este ritmo característico se denomina Bomba, y es originario del Valle del Chota (Ecuador), ritmos afroecuatorianos con mucho sabor y cultura......
Google Translate from Spanish to English: "This is called a pump characteristic rhythm, and is originally from Valle del Chota (Ecuador), Ecuadorians flavorful rhythms and culture ......"
Notice that Bomba is translated as “pump”.

Example #3: PASITO TUN - TUN - Versión Original - Las Bombas de Oro de Nuestra Tierra .wmv

joop517 Uploaded on Nov 4, 2010

Uno de los ritmos típicos de nuestro floklore, único en su género a nivel mundial, identidad de un pueblo y una nación.
Google Translate from Spanish to English: "One of the typical rhythms of our folklores, unique in its kind worldwide, the identity of a people and a nation."
Also, notice the photographs of gourd instruments being used as horns, for instance at 1:57.

Example #4: Afro Ecuadorian La Bomba Dance

dreaflan, Uploaded on Dec 16, 2010

Example #5: Bombas Ecuatorianas Video Mix

Misterbebefullmix, Uploaded on Mar 10, 2011

... musica ecuatoriana del valle del chota ibarra, va dedicado para todas las personas que me pidieron este set espero que les guste y lo disfruten
Google Translate from Spanish to English: "Ecuadorian music ... ibarra chota Valley, is dedicated to all the people who asked me this set hope you like it and enjoy"

Example #6: Bomba, an afro Ecuadorian rhythm

Prensa Latina, Published on Jun 7, 2012

In Valle la Chota, North of Ecuador, people from a black settlement keeps alive the La Bomba music, an afro Ecuadorian rhythm played with drums, guitars and other musical instruments.

Example #7: Bomba Salinas Imbabura Ecuador

jbfa79, Published on Oct 23, 2012
Danza típica de nuestra cultura Afro-Ecuatoriana (HD Video)
Typical dance of our Afro-Ecuadorian culture.

Example #8: Bomba dancers in Salinas, Ecuador

Peg Reilly Published on Sep 12, 2013

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1 comment:

  1. As an aside, I noticed that the short, flared skirts worn by the young dancers in the video given as Example #6 above are very similar if not the same as the skirts worn by a number of African American stomp & shake cheerleaders. That style of skirt serves the same function for both types of movement arts: it helps show of the hip movement of the dancers.

    Click for a pancocojams post on stomp & shake cheerleading.