Mr Black is the most important Champeta artist today. Photo: instagram Mr Black
Mr. Black is the most important Champeta artist today. Photo: Instagram- Mr Black

Who are the biggest Champeta artists in Cartagena?

Champeta Day was celebrated in Cartagena as a tribute to the genre of urban music.


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On Aug. 13, the 'Corralito de Piedra' celebrated Champeta Day, a tribute to the musical rhythm left by Africans in the city. 

Over the weekend, Cartagena was filled with music, folklore, colors and above all, a lot of Champeta. Although many artists are currently in the genre, here are the three most significant artists over the years: 

El Sayayin 

John Jairo Sayas Díaz, better known as 'Sayayin,' was one of the most recognized Champeta artists in Cartagena. He was born on June 4, 1982, in the populous neighborhood of Canapote, in the north of Cartagena. He grew up with his mother and three siblings, after his father abandoned them.

It was in the Olaya Herrera neighborhood where 'Sayayín' picked up champeta.

Saya passed away in 2012 after being shot four times, but he left a legacy with all the artists still pushing the genre. 

El Afinaito

Sergio Liñán Meza, known artistically and popularly as 'El Afinaito,' was born on Oct. 27, 1979 in Isla Fuerte, in the department of Bolivar.

The first song he recorded was "Bruja Loca," then came his hit, "Busco alguien que me quiera," and other songs like "Palo Palito."

'Afinaito' passed away on Dec. 29, 2012 from cardiac arrest. That day, he had finished recording the songs of his last album and swallowed a pill for a sore throat. Hours later, he died.

Mr. Black 

Mr. Black is one of the most -ecognized champeta artists today. He was born in one of the most popular sectors of Cartagena, the Olaya Herrera neighborhood. He began his musical career in 1998, with his first big national hit "Los trapitos al agua," followed by "Braulio," "Cipriano," and a whole range of successful productions, which have made him the benchmark of the musical genre.

The artist, now known as 'El Príncipe de la Champeta,' has shared the stage with national and international artists such as Marc Anthony, Carlos Vives, Silvestre Dangond, Oscar de Leon, Mortal Combat, Tito Nieves, Arcángel, wolfine, and Diomedes Díaz, among others.

Among the best known young faces are also Twister, Jader Tremendo, Kevin Florez, Zaider and Young F. 


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