Prophetic Culture: “Reggae is an alternative to what we receive every day” | The Puerto Rican band will perform on Friday the 24th in Buenos Aires

Prophetic Culture: “Reggae is an alternative to what we receive every day” | The Puerto Rican band will perform on Friday the 24th in Buenos Aires
Prophetic Culture: “Reggae is an alternative to what we receive every day” | The Puerto Rican band will perform on Friday the 24th in Buenos Aires

In tune with the name of his new tour, “Por más”, Prophetic culture returns to Buenos Aires to redouble the bet. Two years after his landing in the Movistar Arenahe flagship Puerto Rican reggae group will reoccur at the Villa Crespo stadium this Friday, May 24 at 8 p.m.. Although on this occasion, apart from reviewing his classics, he will preview songs from what will be his next album. “At that time, we didn’t know what to expect. It had been a long time since we went there. In the end, it was a perfect night,” he recalls. Willy Rodríguez, singer and bassist of the group founded in 1996, on the other side of the zoom, accompanied by the guitarist Eliut González. “We know that we are going through a difficult time, apart from the fact that there are other reggae concerts, like the one with Dread Mar I celebrating his 20-year career. “We are aware of the economic situation in Argentina.”

-It is a visceral time not only in the country but throughout the world. Taking into account its awareness-raising nature, what do you think reggae has to contribute in moments like this?

Willy Rodríguez: -In the specific case of Argentina, it seems irresponsible to me that international artists speak out about what is happening. And even less so if we do not know the reality that is experienced daily. It’s easy to say what people expect from you. I know that if I shoot the Argentine president, people will celebrate. However, it is a country that has been suffering from economic problems for a long time.

-Another undeniable reality is that reggae, at least in Latin America, is experiencing a decline in consumption and popularity.

WR: -Reggae has diminished a little. But, at the same time, it is music that has remained among the people. In Argentina and Chile, more than anywhere else in Latin America, there was a boom in the genre. That didn’t happen in Puerto Rico. I feel that reggae survives and we are there when we are needed. It is an alternative to everything we receive every day.

-How do you see the genre with respect to the rise of urban music?

WR: -There are young movements that are attracting attention, especially in Argentina. I think what’s happening with trap and neo soul is impressive. A new school is being created. The joy we have is that we exist above reggae. This is a band that covers many styles and has its own personality. That gives us the possibility of surviving against many different musical movements.

-In fact, the birth of Cultura Profética coincided with the first years of reggaetón.

Eliut González: -Whoever knows our history knows that we were born at the same time as what is known today as “urban music.” The first recording experience we had was for an album called The corrupt side. If you look for the playlist of the artists who participated, Daddy Yankee, Nicky Jam and a lot of other people were there. When they now see us collaborating with them, they throw us the wrong way. There is a lot of respect between us, we have been little brothers. Furthermore, without reggae there is no reggaetón. At one point, reggaeton in Puerto Rico was called “Rap & Reggae.”

WR: -It’s very crazy to see the respect that urban music artists have for us. Before it went global, Bad Bunny recorded a song in which he says: “We smoke more than at a Culture concert” (NdelR: he says it in reference to cannabis). And in another song, Farruko mentions me. Most of them grew up going to our concerts.

-Do you remember what the beginnings of reggaetón were like?

WR: -Although The General is considered the precursor, Nando Boom had arrived before. He not only influenced reggaetón, but also Latin reggae (NdelR: the album Big yuyo, from Los Pericos, can attest to this). And in Puerto Rico that Panamanian wave caught on. More than with reggae, Puerto Ricans had to do with hip hop. That happened due to the great migration of Puerto Ricans to New York. That’s why it was natural that rap developed first before reggae. At the same time Vico C was doing rap, Brewly MC was doing reggae. The Puerto Rican was perfecting his style. What differentiates us from other Latin American musicians is that we learned to export our music. We learned to take risks and be effective with what we do.

-Now that you’re talking about risk, why did you decide to release an instrumental version of your latest studio album, Sweetness?

WR: -We always wanted to do it, but it was now that we had the opportunity to do it correctly. It was a conceptual idea. Every music we make has a specific aura that survives without the lyrics. You can get to the same emotional place with music alone.

EG: -It is the same disk (NdelR: The sweetnessa came out in 2014, while the instrumental version is from 2019), what happens is that we removed the voices. One as a listener misses the detail of the arrangements. The idea of ​​doing this is that people pay attention to that work. We are very thorough with that. The nice thing is that you hear it in a different way. Even we continue to be surprised by everything that appears in those topics.

-Did they get to play it live?

WR: -No. It would have been interesting, but I suppose people should wait for the voice. What we do do live is lengthen the jams. We make different versions of the songs. It’s what we enjoy most about live shows.

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