Musaraña, a music break from the heaviness of 2020
The new project is the brainchild of María Laboy and is danceable, futuristic fuel for millennials.
There are tostones con alas (fried plantains) with wings on them, red wine comets, orange fruit planets and tambores with butterfly wings.
The literal translation of musaraña is “timid shrew,” but that’s far from what the artwork and the music’s concept demonstrates. In Puerto Rican slang, it translates to random thoughts or a wandering mind.
Born in San Juan, María Laboy trained as a performer alongside the iconic Cepeda Family of Santurce, ambassadors of Afro-Puerto Rican music and culture.
When she moved to the states, she performed in front of audiences from El Barrio in New York, all the way to the Latin Grammys in Las Vegas.
Laboy seeks to bring back soneras like Celia Cruz, Iris Chacón and La Lupe. She feels that the U.S hasn’t seen one since these iconic stars and she’s responding to the void by resurrecting their vocal improv skills, charisma and playful rhythmic ad-libs.
The end product is a danceable, futuristic Latinx music for the empowered millennial generation.
“For the longest time, I have been desiring to experience music, sounds and gatherings that profoundly shake and elevate our spirits from the challenges that we have been facing daily on different scales. In this, I am taking a cue from my African roots and how our ancestors used to do when dancing to drum beats to release the heaviness, the cruelties, of a hard day of labor and violence,” she told Afropop Worldwide.
Laboy hopes that this new single will assist people in releasing the heaviness of today’s suffering and reclaim their joy through music.