The Garifuna Collective Returns; Great Memories In Europe
The Garifuna Collective returned today from their European tour where they entertained thousands with songs from their latest album "Ayo". After traveling through several different countries all across Europe, they seemed glad to be back home. It's their second major tour in that part of the world, and when they landed at the PGIA today, We caught up where they told us about the tour's success.
The Garifuna Collective already has shown lined up in Belize and is working on its next album. As we've told you, this is the group's second European tour.
Garifuna Collective Back from Extended Tour…
Preeminent Belizean musicians, the Garifuna Collective is back from an extensive tour of Europe. During their travels, the group performed from a vast catalogue of World Music which spans several years and includes the music of legendary artists Andy Palacio and Sofia Blanco. Before sold out crowds in Holland and Serbia, the Collective once again represented Belize on the international stage.
Isani Cayetano, Reporting
The Garifuna Collective, famous internationally for its stellar body of work in the genre of World Music, returned from a five-week tour of Europe earlier today. The performing trip saw the group playing before huge audiences across ten countries, including Switzerland, Germany, Belgium and the Netherlands. According to road manager Al Obando, the outing was a great experience which allowed them an opportunity to further showcase Belizean music.
Al Obando, Road Manager, Garifuna Collective
“This is the longest tour, our longest European tour for the group so far and I think any group from Belize touring at this level. All the festivals were really educational for us, I mean the band members came now with a whole different mindset, I mean everybody meeting all the different types of musicians, different musicians from all over the world which is the experience every time, sharing Belizean music and teaching the world about Belize.
Normally for the Garifuna Collective one of the main things for me is that I usually play the Segundo drum but it’s a totally different change now having to lead since Joshua [Arana] had school and had to stay behind. I’ve done it before, it’s not something that’s much of a challenge to take that leadership role but it’s just a different feel on me to keep the sound of the band while being me, the best me I could be. So that was a totally different experience but it was great. And also the band performing in Serbia for the first time a band from Belize has ever been there to perform. First time having that experience was one of the greatest experiences you could find. The people from Serbia, their response to our Belizean music was like wow. When they hear our music thereafter they think that we are the best band in the world because they have never heard a sound like it before coming from Belize. And then for some people in some countries, like the borders that we passed, they have never seen a Belizean passport. So we were the first to be in that country, in those particular countries.”
“How has the experience allowed you to grow, either artistically or in the specific genre or craft of music?”
“Well first of all I have seen many ideas and doing a show is more than just playing music and letting it sound good. But you have to make sure that you connect with the audience and everything and it’s very important that we realize that we have a lot of work to do but we have the capacity. We have the knowledge to share with others.”
The group performed the music of Belizean icon Andy Palacio, as well as selections from Ayo, their most recent release. Isani Cayetano reporting for News Five.
We do note that popular drummer Joshua Arana was unable to make the tour.