Nos Fuimos Pa' Belize
"We Went to Belize"
One of the missions we(Buyepongo) as musician/artist have, is to preserve the tradition of "up" beat tropical dance music. But always with its unique "Buye" feel. If you chilled with us before you know we love Punta music. A relatively new beat to me, since i really didn't get in to this musical beat till about 5 or 6 years ago, Yet its drum patterns and combinations have brought my techniques and musical visions to a whole new level. Punta comes out of the Central American Caribbean region with its strong points in Belize, Honduras and Guatemala. The first time I heard Punta, I can say it made laugh a little. Only punta song I knew or heard of was Sopa De Caracol By Banda Blanca (I would hear at quinceañeras as a kid).
It reminded me of Los Bukis mixed with a Caribbean Steel Drum band with a real cheesy 80's Yamaha keyboard sound. The kind of keyboard you get for your 5th birthday. But like all music I always hunt to hear the raw beat. And sure enough I got exposed to some of the heaviest and rhythmic music I have ever heard. Listening bands great pioneering bands like Banda Blanca, Kazzabe, Garifuna Kids, Los Silver Star, Los Rolands and help from my friend Roberto Navarro I was able to learn a lot of fundamental sounds and techniques to Punta. Learning that Punta music was a genre created by the Garifuna People who are descendants of Carib, Arawak and West African people, I was intrigued to learn more about this culture and so we saved up and bought a ticket out to Belize. We backpacked thru out Belize from Orange Walk to San Ignacio To Hopkins Beach.
We traveled to Belize in time for Carnival and The Belizean Independence day. We jammed out with Titti Man Flores and stayed at a drum school in Hopkins Beach. We enjoyed this beautiful country and its people. Durning Carnaval you can hear Punta Played in every corner.Hundreds of Dance schools displaying their Garifuna pride and Navarro and Meshlee there to absorb all the love. From its infectious drum patterns and horn lines to its embedded 1-2 clave (ta ta, ta ta, ta ta) Punta music hold a big part in Buyepongos heart(drum). To be able to go to another country that you have never been to and back pack and hitch hike your way around, its a life changing experience. Wiki travel advices people to stay away from the inner city and to stay in the resorts. Wed did the opposite and stayed in the in town with the people to absorb the culture and the life.