Tuesday, July 27, 2010

De Musica Ligera: Narco-rap

Narcocorridos, or drug ballads, are a "controversial folk-music genre" popular in parts of Mexico as well as Colombia. An offshoot of this genre that has gained increasing attention is called narco-rap and as one of artist told CNN their music resonates with fans in high-violence areas:

Cano and Blunt's first hit, "Reynosa Maldosa" (roughly translated as Reynosa the Bad Town) charted the growing levels of drug-related violence in this city of 500,000.

"Reynosa the bad town. A s***-load of bad guys, full of mafiosos. The streets are dangerous," it goes. And it's instantly catchy.

"We just sing about what we see in the streets. People identify with these songs because they listen to us and see for themselves what's going on. That's the reality," Cano said.

One of the groups in the emerging narco-rap scene is a trio known as El Cartel de Santa whose songs have been influenced by hip-hop from north of the border according to one of their members in a recent interview. Indeed, their latest album includes an English-language song, "Mobster Paradise", which you can listen to and gain an insight into the narco-rap world:

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