Dear Tropicalistas, DJs, DJanes, Friends, Record Collectors, Sisters and Brothers world wide, 2018 was a great year for us at Tropical Diaspora® Records, and we can say that it has been the best since we establish the label! I recently came back from to the concrete jungle of São Paulo in the South over my home in North Chicago and arriving in my home in Berlin, not only with bags full of records but with a heart full of memories.
It is tradition at Tropical Diaspora® to remember some of the miles stones of the year and to think about our mission emphasizing cross-cultural experiences that show the manner how communities take their past and present it in their own hands. We can say that this mission is an accomplished one!
Our greatest achievement this year was Renato Gama’s LP Olhos Negros Vivo with a 7 inch insert of his band Nhocuné Soul. This record is the living proof that our commitment with cross-cultural experiences can be done through music, Renato Gama’s solo master work came to me in a trip from Berlin wire Chicago to São Paulo. The full history is to be found in the LP insert and in our web page. Here I would mention all the people involved in it, in a direct or indirect manner, beginning with Sonorama Discos, our sister independent label in Chicago represented by our friends Charlie, Sr.Eddy and Marlow. These guys introduce me to a very important guy in the history of this record, King Hippo, DJ, producer, cultural agitator, venue manager… just to mention few of his talents, and one of the souls behind another independent label in the city called International Anthem. He asked me to buy a record in São Paulo, which was played in one of his events, Uncanned Music, by DJane Sadpsr; it was a Ney Matogrosso record. Last but not least, we would say thank to Drew from 606 Records, where our Renato Gama’s record got in the list of the 10 best LPs of 2018, Michael and his team at cocktail bar Estereo Chicago, all the DJs and DJ collectives I have met or I have played with in the city.
Going back to São Paulo we must give a big up to the guys behind the best tropical party in the city, Festa Marea, produced by Hever Alvz along DJs David Phant and Dom Caiaffo. Still in Sampa and with support from Festa Marea I could meet DJ Mixticius from Bogota record an episode for his independent radio Mixticius Radio in the headquarters of Patuá Discos.
A special thanks goes to the whole Sá Menina Productions team, the people behind the production of Olhos Negros Vivo and all Renato Gama’s projects.
To finalize this year we have recorded our final mixtape inspired by our own very special cross-cultural experience with all the mentioned people and movements… a mix that allows all the listeners to embark on a journey into the African diaspora cultures. It begins in West Africa and the West Indies and goes back and forth crossing the Atlantic many times. It shows and enjoys the amazing cultural creativity of the Tropical Diaspora.