Archive for the Colombia Category

COLOMBIA photo by Rich Spirit, 2009 (part 3)

Posted in Colombia, Listen Recovery, photography, Traveling Colombia on June 15, 2010 by Listen Recovery

COLOMBIA photo by Rich Spirit, 2009 (part 2)

Posted in Colombia, Listen Recovery, photography, Traveling Colombia on June 9, 2010 by Listen Recovery

COLOMBIA photo by Rich Spirit, 2009 (intro)

Posted in Colombia, Listen Recovery, photography, Traveling Colombia on June 8, 2010 by Listen Recovery

The photos of Rich Spirit in Colombia, 2009.

Posted by Renz De Madrugada.

All photos are copyright by Listen Recovery Fotos, 2009 ©

La Sierra Nevada, COLOMBIA in photography (part II)

Posted in Colombia, photography, Sierra Nevada Colombia on February 5, 2010 by Listen Recovery

Continue from part I

This is the 2nd part set of photos from SIERRA NEVADA and the COJI MAMA People.  The Coji Mama lands are sacred, there isn’t much tourism or visitation all year around.  Only a few visitors are given permission  to enter this lands.  This lands are mainly untouched by the Government or any Independent companies for Tourism.  Believe it or not, The Coji people have made it very difficult for outside investors or tourist companies to allow the passage to any of their sacred lands in Sierra Nevada, Colombia.

The Sierra Nevada in Colombia has highest lands and mountains ever  discover along any coast in the world. The Colombian Sierra Nevada is unique.  Here is the 2nd set of photos from various photographers that have allow us to publish their work.

La Sierra Nevada, COLOMBIA in photography (part I)

Posted in Colombia, photography, Sierra Nevada Colombia on February 3, 2010 by Listen Recovery

SIERRA NEVADA, Colombia “Its people and territory”

Posted in Colombia, Colombian Art, photography, Preserving Culture, Sierra Nevada Colombia on February 3, 2010 by Listen Recovery

The Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta rises abruptly from the Caribbean coast of Colombia. It is the world’s highest coastal mountain range, independent and isolated from the Andes. It is also a region of tremendous historical, cultural, biological and economic importance for Colombia.

Due to its size, approximately 17,000 km2, altitudinal variations and tropical position, the Sierra Nevada possesses some of the world’s most diversified flora and fauna, including many endemic species, and is of significant biological and hydrological importance. Its 35 river basins provide fresh water for some 1.5 million people living in the surrounding areas, and for agriculture and industry.

It is a sacred region for the 50,000 indigenous people from four main ethnic groups – Kogi, Wiwa, Arhuaco and Kankuamo – descendants of the Tayrona,

We still inhabit the region and practice traditions that date back to pre-colonial times, and our ancestral territory is delimited by a series of interconnected points (sacred sites) in the lower parts of the mountain range and between the sea and the snow-capped peaks. For our people, Cerro Gonawindua is the center of the universe and the mountain’s health controls the health of the entire planet. Our entire social organization and spiritual and cultural foundation are based on sacred practices carried out throughout these traditional lands. We believe that the Sierra Nevada is the “Heart of the World.”

Our Mamas, the guardians of our cultural knowledge, are renowned for their wisdom, foresight, and caring for the natural environment. We rely on their guidance for maintaining our traditions despite serious threats to our lands, way of life, culture and the natural resource base.


The Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta and the indigenous people who live there have been affected since the arrival of the conquistadors and European thinking at the start of the 16th century. Despite their relative isolation, the indigenous people of the Sierra Nevada were progressively stripped of much of their traditional lands and their culture, way of life and sacred sites were violated. They have had to contend with a succession of invasions and external pressures, colonizers, farmers and missionaries, and more recently from those involved in marijuana and coca cultivation, and non-indigenous settlements.

Deforestation, biodiversity loss, illegal crops and soil erosion threaten the future of the territory and the water resources on which large human settlements, agro-industries and tourism in areas around the Sierra Nevada are dependent. A water crisis is already evident.

Proposals for large infrastructure projects present a new threat to the ecosystems. The growing problem of armed conflict over territorial control creates other risks for the future survival of the indigenous people and their culture.

The Strategy

The indigenous people of the Sierra Nevada propose a strategy for the conservation of their traditional territory and the protection of forests and water resources, based on the recovery of lands within the legally recognized resguardos (collective indigenous territories) and the extension of resguardos to include sacred sites and zones that they consider a priority.

The aim is to protect 90,000 hectares of priority zones, within the existing and extended resguardos. The strategy includes the protection of traditional knowledge and practices of the indigenous peoples of the Sierra Nevada, recognizing their role in the conservation of ecosystems and biological diversity. It will strengthen traditional land use and management practices that preserve indigenous culture and knowledge, and the conservation of water resources for regional and global benefit.

Project implementation is in the hands of the four indigenous organizations, accompanied by the United Nations Development Program (UNDP).

A proposal presents the activities and a financial projection for the initial phase, to recover 18,920 hectares of ecological and cultural importance, the restoration of natural ecosystems in 60% of these areas, and the protection of at least 15 threatened sacred sites. Please contact Danillo Villafaña or Fiona Wilton for more information.

Progress to Date

In the priority areas for this program, the indigenous organizations coordinate with the relevant state institutions and are carrying out the preparatory work for land purchase, such as inventories and valuations. They manage their own databases with thematic and land-use maps.

Agreements have been reached with the national government, regional environmental authorities, INCODER and the Fondo Nacional de Regalías, for co-financing the legalization and extension of the resguardos. International environmental organizations have also given their support, such as The Nature Conservancy, Rotary Club International, AVINA.

The United Nations Development Program (UNDP) has enabled two visits by Mamas and other indigenous leaders from the Sierra Nevada to the United States to promote the program, and a Group of Friends of the Sierra Nevada has been formed.

The Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) and the Korean Fund for Poverty Reduction are funding a program for food security among the indigenous people, strengthening traditional agricultural practices in recovered lands. The European Commission supports the traditional authorities to identify the health and education needs of the indigenous population, and to develop initiatives for the ecological restoration of recovered lands.

Private donations have enabled the program to start and for traditional lands to be purchased.


by taironatrust organization

“why humans were made” the Koji Mamas explain


Posted in AFRO LATINOS, AFRO LATINOS DOC, Colombia, Colombia Music, Colombian Art, video archives on February 2, 2010 by Listen Recovery

EL ACORDEON DEL DIABLO Documental, Colombia. (Francisco Rada Batista el Hombre – Pacho Rada)

Posted in AFRO LATINOS, Afro Sounds, Colombia, Colombia Music, Colombian Music Icon, Cumbias, documentary, video archives on January 11, 2010 by Listen Recovery


Francisco Rada Batista “PACHO RADA”

Was born on May 11th 1907 in Las Mulas, on the great Magdalena river. European ships from have travelled along the river since the mid-19th century and this is where Pacho’s father bought an accordion from German sailors, becoming one of Columbia’s first accordionists.
At a party in a village nearby, young Pacho picked up his father’s accordion while no-one was looking. After trying out a few notes he produced a recognisable rendition of the melody of “La Chencha”, a tune still familiar today. His father embraced him joyfully and a few days later he was given his first accordion.
Pacho Rada was one of the first troubadours to travel around the country playing unaccompanied, with just his voice and the accordion, bearing news and making music wherever someone had something to celebrate. He dreamt up hundreds of new songs on his travels, many of which have become classics.
He is known as the man who invented “son”, one of the four Vallenato rhythms. However, Pacho was already too old by the time that musicians could get rich playing Vallenato music, when it became popular outside the province due to the marihuana boom in the seventies. At the age of 72 he became homeless once again.
His children helped him to put up a simple house on the outskirts of Santa Maria, where he still lives.
Pacho Rada has 422 grandchildren, great-grandchildren and great-great-grandchildren. Women loved the young musician, but their parents despised him.

Pacho “Who would have wanted a penniless son-in-law, especially if he travelled around like a vagabond and spent his days enjoying music, rum and women. But they couldn’t do a thing about it. Who can stop a woman in love?”

Manuel Rada is Pacho Rada’s youngest son.

He travels around the country just like his father used to, together with his cousin, Rafael Valencia, living on whatever he can earn here and there for performing. There are no records of his music, he doesn’t appear on television but plays at parties and other festive occasions or throws an ad-hoc concert in his neighbourhood when the mood takes him.
While the means of transport that carry him may have changed since Pacho Rada’s day, Manuel has remained true to his father’s music. He plays traditional Vallenato music, with the European accordion accompanied only by the Indian guacharaca and the African caja drum. He composes original songs narrating episodes from his life.

Alfredo de Jesús Gutiérrez

Was born on April 17th 1944 in Paloquemao, Sucre. His work as a song-writer and composer gave a boost to the position of folk music in his country. He ranks among the country’s greatest musicians, thrice crowned Vallenato King, having won the competition and been voted best accordionist at the Vallenato festival held every year in Valledupar.
It was Alfredo Gutiérrez who first won international renown for his country’s music in the eighties. In the sixties he set up the legendary group “Los Corraleros de Majagual” with Calixto Ochoa and Daniel Montes, creating an international big band sound by adding electrical guitar, bass and a wind section to the traditional instruments. Over the decades Alfredo Gutiérrez honed and perfected the big band concept and has performed with his well-rehearsed team in the USA and Europe, as well as throughout Latin America.

RICH SPIRIT: Travels photos from his COLOMBIAN TRIP 2009. (La Virginia, Santa Cecilia, Ita, El Aye, Quibdo & Bahia Solano)

Posted in Colombia, Listen Recovery, photography, Traveling Colombia on December 19, 2009 by Listen Recovery

La Virginia

Santa Cecilia

Santa Cecilia



El Aye

El Aye

El Aye



Rich Spirit: Bahia Solano

Bahia Solano, North of Colombia.

Atnimas, Colombia. “Brief Stop” (madrugada)


Posted in Colombia, Listen Recovery, photography, Traveling Colombia on December 18, 2009 by Listen Recovery

Sixto Silgado “Paito” Legendary Gaitero, Bogota.