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Afropop Worldwide is a weekly radio program from NPR/PRI exploring music of the African Diaspora. The program has been going strong for more than 20 years. Its simply a wonderful program. Past episodes are available free on their website. They also have a blog.

This week’s Afropop episode covers the music of black Peru. There is a classic compilation of Afro-Peruvian music Afro-Peruvian Classics: Soul of Black Peru. It was assembled by David Byrne’s Luaka Bop label. The standout track is Susana Baca’s Maria Lando.

Download: Susana Baca – Maria Lando

Buy: Amazon

Speaking of David Byrne, his blog includes a radio section where he regularly (monthly?) posts great mixtapes, usually around a theme. Also, you might want to check out his essay I Hate World Music.

Gabo Ferro is an Argentian singer-songwriter, poet and historian. Much of his music is dramatic and soaring, like a more spartan Antony and the Johnsons. ¿Están dopados los enamorados? from his 2006 album Todo Lo Sólido Se Desvanece En El Aire is a bit different: an anthemic love song.

¿Están dopados los enamorados?
Están dopados, o algo así ha de ser.

Se deforman perfectos, se mueven violento,
se suspiran por turnos, pierden el parpadeo.

¿Están dopados los enamorados?
Están dopados, algo así ha de ser.

Pierden la perspicacia, se les va el ingenio,
se sospechan, confían que ahora todo será bueno.

¿Están dopados los enamorados?
Están dopados, o algo así ha de ser.

No piensan, no razonan, no analizan;
se proyectan, se estudian, se visten y se desvisten.

¿Están dopados los enamorados?
Están dopados, o algo así ha de ser.

Alteran su conciencia de vacíos a llenos;
de complejos a simples, de mortales a eternos.

¿Están dopados los enamorados?
Están dopados, o algo así ha de ser.

 

My translation discards all of the song’s poetry and wordplay:

Are lovers high?
They’re high, or something like that.

They’re perfectly bent out of shape, they jerk around,
sigh in turns, forget to blink.

They lose their wits, cleverness leaves them,
they suspect each other, but trust that it will all work out.

They don’t think, reason, or analyze;
they dream of the future, study each other, dress and undress each other.

They feel no longer empty but fulfilled;
no longer complex but simple, not mortal but eternal.

Are lovers high?
They’re high, or something like that.

 

Download: Gabo Ferro – Estan Dopados Los Enamorados

Buy: Amazon

Web: Gabo Ferro

Stern’s Music is a leading distributor of African Music, exporting new releases and classic re-releases to the first world. Their website has monthly charts of their best-selling albums. They only cover albums distributed by Stern’s, but they’re large enough that its a great way to find new African music that has found an overseas audience.