The 12 tones of change: Colombian music talent at Teatro Villa Mayor

By Emma Newbery April 29, 2019
Doce Tonos
The Doce Tonos launch in Orleans House earlier this month. Photo: Doce Tonos

Doce Tonos is showcasing 12 very different emerging bogotano talents on May 3 and 4, with everything from ska to folk.

The Colombian music scene always has something new to offer – whether a new fusion, a new event or a new up and coming musician.

Speaking to many emerging musicians, while it is an industry that is rarely short of creativity, it’s also an industry that is often short of cash.

Which is why it’s interesting to see musical collectives turning their creative minds to ways of raising money.

Doce Tonos – made up of twelve very different musical groups – will be performing on May 3 and 4 at the Teatro Villa Mayor in what organisers say is a “showcase not a concert.” The idea is for bands to connect with people who might want to hire them, promote them or invest in them.

Showcase Doce Tonos

Friday, May 3, 6 pm – Rock and urban sounds

Bands: Xinnix, Mister Clover, Snowcrash, Tribu Sonora, Ennui and Carlos Reyes

Saturday, May 4, 4 pm – New Colombian music

Bands: SeverOreveS, Cacao Munch, Tres Cortés, Supertónica, Harawi and Eduardo Bandola y los Bandoleros de la Música

For Teatro Villa Mayor, located in Antonio Nariño in the south of the city, supporting this event is part of their wider mission of cultural development.

While the event is aimed at those involved in the music industry, anyone is welcome to go – it’s free – and a chance to visit a part of the city you might not normally find yourself in.

Related: Local bands at Estéreo Picnic

This year’s event will double the number of bands that took part last year and also reflect many more genres of music. There is everything from ska, blues, rock, metal to electro-andean, tropical and Colombian music.

Eduardo Pardo – the man behind Doce Tonos and the Eduardo in Eduardo Bandola y los Bandoleros de la Música – said, “It’s very unusual that 12 bands come together to do a project like this.”

Doce Tonos

And the showcase is not the only innovation. The musicians are also turning to crowdfunding to raise money for the event. Pardo tells the packed launch party that what happens at many events is that the artists have to pay, even if the venue is provided. “We have some sponsors, but we are missing a mountain of things,” he said.

The groups are asking for donations from as little as 1,000 pesos on vaki. Putting in more will get you CDs, mugs, tickets to shows and t-shirts depending on how much cash you want to part with.

If the two bands – Supertónica, Harawi – that played at the launch party are anything to go buy, this event will certainly showcase some great emerging Colombian music.

Head along to the theatre (Carrera 34B #36-04 sur) on May 3 and 4 to hear for yourself.

Who makes up Doce Tonos?

Harawí – Electro-andina

The Electro-Andina group put on a proper show with LED visuals mixing with their music – traditional bambuco, pasillo and other beats fused with drum n’ bass, techno and other electronic rhythms.

Cacao Munch – Latin music

In the four years since they formed, Cacao Munch have made a name for themselves with their AfroColombian-Colombian tunes, incorporating electric guitar, saxophone, clarinet and even at times the accordion.

Eduardo Bandola y los bandoleros de la música – Latin/beat jazz

These musical bandits cross genres without fear, for a mezcla of Colombian sounds, world music and Latin jazz.

Tribu Sonora – Rap fusion

The two members bring backgrounds in hip hop, rap, pop and folk influences to the tribe’s sound, which ring through in the two albums they have produced since they got together in 2016.

SeverOreveS – Ska with a Colombian flavour

Their acronym of SOS says it all: this is a fusion group with wake up call for the world. Soon to release their second album, this mix of Colombian rhythms is already being picked up internationally.

Carlos Reyes – Blues/Rock

The bassist from metal band Agony returned from the states with some blues and country strings to his bow. After founding two blues bands, he is now killing it as a soloist.

XinniX – Industrial rock

Berlin meets Bogotá with what feels like a one-woman industrial rock engine. Powerful vocals supported by powerful percussion for a different – but no less Colombian – sound.

Mister Clover – Alternative rock

We’re all in clover with the pop-mestizo sounds of this emerging rollo band. Plenty of bouncy guitars, bouncy tunes with a band whose fun spirit is contagious.

Snowcrash – Sci fi rock

Snowcrash – the static on a screen that results from a bad signal – have a statement to make about the noise that you hear when there is no signal. Influenced by the likes of Depeche Mode, Nine Inch Nails and The Prodigy, this group formed over 10 years ago.

Supertónica – Latin fusion

The energetic, fresh sound of Supertónica results from the group’s passion for making a creative space where they can bring together all kinds of Latin genres.

Tres Cortés – Traditional Colombian

The Cortés family – brother and sister, Caroline and Pablo and their father René – bring the cuatro, tiple, guitar and piano to the fore in their interpretations of traditional Colombian and Latin American music.

Ennui – Bogotano rock

This energetic and aggressive metal band have a French name, Spanish lyrics and songs that speak of resistance.