The King of Brukdown - Wilfred Peters
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Wednesday February 22, 2017

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The King of "Brukdown" - Wilfred Peters

The legendary Mr.Peters!

Here's a nice article on Mr. Peters in the international press...

Belize: Remembering Mr. Peters’ Boom and Chime Band

Not too long ago there were “boom and chime” bands all over Belize, a speck on the Central American map just below Mexico. If you were lucky enough to get down there before 2010 you likely heard the country’s top boom band, led by the iconic accordionist/singer Wilfred Peters, batting out peppy, booty-swinging tunes at parades, festivals, parties and miscellaneous jump-ups.

You’ll still hear budding boom and chimers here and there, but seven years ago the last of the genre’s old-time heavy hitters bit the dust when Peters slipped away at 79 to that big dancehall in the sky.

Peters’ chief sideman was a drummer who beat one side of his drum with a mallet to make a booming sound. The other side had a metal rim, which the drummer hit with a hollow metal stick to make a chiming sound. Hence, “boom and chime.”

Their songs featured the country’s homegrown and still popular mish-mash of African, Latin and Caribbean music called “brukdown” (slang for “broken down calypso”). It goes back centuries to the days when Belize – formerly British Honduras – was home to escaped slaves, out-of-work pirates (during hard times on the Spanish Main), Black Caribe Indians kicked off the Grenadines, Maya refugees from the Caste War in Mexico, Garifuna farmers evicted from an offshore island, people whose faces were on “Wanted” posters in a half-dozen languages and others who came to timber camps in the country’s steaming hot jungles to chop down forests of precious mahogany trees.

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Photograph courtesy San Pedro House of Culture

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