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News -> Entertainment

Garifuna Music Union shedding light on darkness

11/21/04
By: Jerry Castro
Preview Lachamuru Jerry Castro

Right before the memorable concert held at the heart of the South Bronx elementary school, J. King, Gadu Nunez, Jorge Marin, James Lovell, Eddie Gregorio and the late Jimmy Suazo sat on a meeting table on 183rd street and Valentine Avenue discussing what they prescribed as the present crisis affecting the Punta Rock crisis.

That was in the fall of 2002.

As 2005 nears by, the Foundation of Garifuna Artists or FUNARGARI as it is known among its members, has become a wing of the Garifuna community as well as Garifuna artists not only in the United States, but in Garifuna communities in Central America.

"This year have been productive", says an enthusiasmatic J. King at the recording studio in the Bronx. 'From hosting the ONECA Conference that took place at the UN (United Nations), we have been active in community issues and have recieved a great amount of media coverage", continued the man who redifined Garifuna music in the 1980's with the classical hit, "Garinagu Waguiya - We are Garinagu".

Sitting next to him was the man in dread who is proclaimed to be the "Godfather of Punta Rock", Gadu Nunez. Mr. Nunez, who is celebrating 25 years in the Punta Rock industry expressed his concerns about why he got involved to help elevate the recognition of Punta Rock.

"We are currently facing a problem that only we can fix', says the Godfather. "We can't rely on others when we have what it takes to fix the problems facing our communities as well as the artists."

Mr. Nunez is a respected musician who is known to translate the pain and tragedy of the Garifuna experience into melodies. In the late 80's he wrote a song about the death of a Garifuna woman crossing the US/Mexico border who eventually died in search for better opportunities in the United States. The song was entitled "Benita". He later wrote one of the most memorable songs about the tragic boat accident on New Year's Day in 1989 where 90 men, women and children lost their lives in the middle of the sea on the coasts of Livingston / Puerto Barrios in Guatemala.

In the article, scheduled to be published by Idabinya News Network, the two talked about how have the Foundation of Garifuna Artists is gaining ground and respect among the community and outside.

'We recieve phone calls from different groups who have become interested in our artists and music', said J. King.

The report also talks about the projection of the future of Punta Rock and where it currently stands.
_________________
Subudibali,,,
Jc
Other Articles By Jerry Castro
03/30/05 The Lords of Punta Rock: Jimmy Suazo
03/22/05 The Beginning of Punta Rock
11/22/04 Garifuna artists from California making grounds in the world
11/08/04 Jimmy Suazo tribute and the messy aftermath



 
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