Black Carpet & Music Celebration…
Please note: this event is not held at the Electric Lodge.
Ideal, a.k.a. Topo, a.k.a. Rolando Castillo, is from La Buga, Livingston, Guatemala. Ideal is a native Garifuna (Black Carib Indian) that grew up in the bush, learning the basic life of the original Garifuna — planting food, fishing, cooking, and growing and preparing the medicinal plants of the tribe.
Ideal grew up in Guatemala and Belize. Ideal and some other musicians like the great Chukupen Paulino, formed the original Larunihati Band (featured in the movie “The Mosquito Coast”). Ideal later met up with Pen Cayetano and Mohobub Flores in Dangriga and for awhile was the youngest member of the Turtle Shell Band. With the Turtle Shell Band, Ideal grew in his skills in Punta Rock, from its inventor Pen Cayetano.
When Ideal came to the United States, he introduced Punta Rock to the Garifuna people living in the Bronx.He formed the legendary punta rock band Isanigu Punta Rock Soul-Jahs. Later meet up with Sandra Bell, manager, promoter of International Garifuna Band, travel around with the late great Andy Palacio,
Now Ideal is a solo act, presenting his first full-length solo CD here — Lidan Dan. I and Includes IDeal, New Album 2017 Formula now on sale
Ideal brought Punta Rock to the US and formed the band, Isanigu, Punta Rock Soul-Jahs. This Afro-Caribbean rhythm from the Garifuna people of Central America. Ideal’s positive message and uplifting musical style will have everyone smiling and dancing.
Awahaya Band, Awahaya Punta Rockers is a recent creation from the minds of some Dangriga’s most recognizable faces in traditional Punta Rock music genre: Bootsy Ranking, Kelsy Bernardez, Dua “Faltas” Nolberto. The band has been around for less than 3 years but it captures the spirit of Dangriga’s original Turtle Shell Band in its early days.
Guwie Band, GUWIE: PUNTA ROCK
Steve Augustine, better known as Guwie, which is Garifuna for hook, has been playing music from the moment he lived in Seine Bight, Stann Creek Belize. Guwie began his musical baby steps as a member of a few local bands. He worked as a constable and he eventually moved to the Cayman Islands. Many Belizeans have moved to the Caribbean but a few of the Garinagu who have ventured into the Cayman Islands have landed jobs as members of the police force.
Guwie moved to Los Angeles in the early 1990’s. He quickly got involved in what he loves the most, music. He started Guwie Possey Band in 1993 with some well-known musicians in the Los Angeles Garifuna community such as the late Tati Lopez, Simon Bernardez, Ambrose Palacio, Santos Zuniga, Mr. Petillo, Dayton Bernardez, Luis Reyes, and Faltas Nolberto. He has performed in Chicago, New York, and in 2014, he performed in his hometown of Seine Bight after 30 years of absence.
Guwie Possey Band has recorded several albums with some of the most iconic songs that Guwie fans adore and dance to every time the band plays. I personally fell in love again with the music of Guwie. His most recent album Guwie: Punta Rock is a jewel among Garifuna music album releases. The album was published in August 2016 under SKM Records label. The executive producer was a well-known promoter and producer of Garifuna music, Osbert Smith “Spice”. It was produced by the talented young artist known as Lil June and Spicekilla (Spice). The Garifuna drums was laid in every track by one of the top drummers, Glen Garcia “Q”. The bass for tracks #2 Ahane Hamugala, #4 Punta Rock, and #9 Waburou Leda Garifuna (Wabürüdün Lidan Garifuna – This is how we write in Garifuna) was laid out by Big Kev (Kevin Ramirez). The enchanting and resonating lead guitar lines were professionally added by Kelvin Martinez. The rest of the songs were finished by Lil June adding his own style on the keyboard and bass.
There are 10 songs in the album and a hidden bonus song by Lil June. The first track is Cup (Kopu), a very popular song that Steve introduced in the early beginnings of the band. Ahane Hamugala (If I had known) is another favorite of Guwie’s fans. Seremei (Seremein – Thank you) is a song Guwie composed as a way to thank God for having survived a vehicle accident where all of the band members were spared their lives. Guwie mentions each one of the names of the musicians who made it through this horrible accident. Punta Rock is a staple in Guwie’s repertoire. Track #5 Tiki I personally like a lot. It is a sticky song with a song that brings out the qualities of a good traditional Garifuna dish. Track #6 Hageysa (Hageisan – Where is it?) is without a doubt another one of those songs that Guwie can’t leave out of his performance. A blast from the past is track #7 Sharon Baby. This song is about powder bun (poudabun), a delicious pastry delicacy that is a staple in the Belizean community but especially among Garifuna. It must have been adopted from the British scone. I am truly enchanted by the lead guitar adornments in this song. It is so properly laid out in the song that it emerges as a true classic, a song that will be expected to be played every time Guwie is on stage. Track #8 Lemesi (Mass) is a traditional drumming and singing hymn heard during Sunday mass at you local Garifuna Catholic mass. Track #9 Waburou Leda Garifuna (Wabürüdün Lidan Garifuna – This is how we write in Garifuna) should be added as a soundtrack for a video that teaches children and grown ups how to count in Garifuna. I love this song as it is easy to follow if you are learning the language but especially the numbers. As for track #10 Guwie (Hook) that his signature song. This is the song that Mr. Augustine plays at the opening of his set while on stage.
You can get your copy by calling Guwie himself at (323) 812-9226 or if you want to hire Guwie for your next event. You can also call Spice (718) 606-5364.
Album reviewed by DJ Labuga email@example.com
Rony Figueroa, VP GAHFU Inc. (323) 898-6841
MC Rony Figueroa