The percussionist and drummer missionary Rafael “Rafa” Lozina returned to Colombia, after touring Misiones, waving the project called “Gira Ñanderoga 2019: Afroamerican Rhythmic Tissue”, where he recreated the result of his sonorous investigations, and putting in value the originality of one of the first musical expressions.
Before returning to Santa Marta, the Caribbean city where he lives, the young man who studied percussion in Cuba, at the Amadeo Roldán Conservatory in Havana, said that during the month he was in his red earth, the experience of teaching and touching was ” highly enriching. “
The musician displayed his knowledge of Latin American folklore for a month, and presented his books Tambolero 1 and 2, which he wrote during his first five years in Bogotá, about several investigations of African aspects in Cuba, and published two years ago by Editorial of the National University of Misiones. It is two volumes of a collection of six, and his intention is to move forward with the next.
The tour was produced by Florencia Monjes and started at the Cultural Center of Spain Juan de Salazar, in Asunción, to continue then in San Pedro, Puerto Rico, Montecarlo, Eldorado, Iguazú, El Soberbio, Oberá, the Good School of Music ( ESMU) and at the Academia de Jazzistas Telonius, in Posadas, to close again with a very special Jam Session based on Afro-Latin rhythms, with local guest artists, in the Paraguayan capital.
Contribute and exchange knowledge
“The reception was very good everywhere I went. The idea was to publicize the books and make them available to the music community or any other, because they are workshops for all audiences. It was incredible the attitude of the people who got hooked and also thanked, because if Misiones is already quite excluded from the cultural in the country; in the internal much more. Then to be able to arrive with the information, to see the different places of cultural self-management that exist in those towns and cities gave me a lot of satisfaction “, the young man rescued.
He feels that he could somehow contribute, exchange other issues that are not just the profusion of television information that “often does not add to people.”
The musician reiterated that the reception of the missionaries “was very rich” and the balance very positive. He worked with a heterogeneous public in fundamental, with women, men, boys, girls, and in some places there was a familiar atmosphere.
“I received numerous concerns with specific questions. Debates were also opened because our province culturally has something very explicit among Europeans, who are all different, and at the same time there is Paraguay and Brazil. Then the court was opened to analyze those musical and rhythmic currents in America and South America. I’m happy with the good reception, “he said.
Children receptive to the sound of drums
The percussionist said that in addition to the adults, the boys and girls happily engaged in an activity that is very playful, “because of this musical percussion thing, something as ancestral as tapping and being able to communicate, was clearly receptive. At times we had to measure the temperature a little because when there is a group of adults the introduction lasts 20 minutes to half an hour of entering history with maps, it is bearable.
But when there are boys, they get a little worried; although surprisingly it worked perfectly, to the point that in San Pedro, for example, we were talking in the Thay Morgernstern library, and I at one point told that there is the Argentine zamba, with Z and the Brazilian samba, and one of the boys raises his hand and notes “it can also be sambes, right? And I found that appreciation of a child who was attentive, “he said.
With respect to the books, the drummer explained that they are of analysis, transcriptions and complex African interpretations in the battery. There is a musical and musicological study of different African ethic groups that reside in the island of Cuba, and of the complexity of drums that “I transcribed them in normal format in score, and I made a very deepest interpretation towards the drums.
That is the technical work, and then there are a lot of things that have to do with history, which is fundamental to understand to play or to see what social expressions those drums carry; what is the weight of history, how are they still resisting after 500 years here in America, how those touches are molded, all the widespread music of America, the European, with the Amerindian and others; how he influenced us and still does, “he said.
This artist believes that culture is a constant mix, and not only from the Latin American point of view, but also from North America, with blacks who play blues, jazz, rock, pop. “It’s like a ramification of the history of each country, according to the mix and according to the struggles, those who took refuge and some disappeared. Then the books are a little that: the vindication of those touches, of those towns “.
He argued that in deepest, all this question is very passionate from the musical point of view. “And when I discover something, a pebble like the one that found the link, picks up the stone and there are a billion other things to discover. And this is because they are cultural interwoven, more than 500 years of mixing, “he said, bidding farewell to Misiones.
Rafa Lozina Torres is already in Colombia where he dedicates himself to the music that is his passion and to the investigation of the rhythms, of the drums of the different regions of the world where percussion is part of the culture.
(Credit text and photos: Patricia López Espínola)
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