Musicians Luis Fernando Davila and Diego Coy will begin their journey back to their homes in Colombia on Jan. 9. But because of a Juneau couple's last-minute hustling, the pair will perform in Haines on Wednesday, Jan. 7, and here on Thursday, Jan. 8.
"It's just going to give some variety for people to appreciate," said Antonio Diaz, who organized the Juneau Arts and Humanities Council-sponsored concert with his wife, Heather Haugland.
Davila and Coy, the sole members of the band Compaz Andino, have been giving concerts in the United States, Europe and Japan for the last two months.
Diaz heard the band play twice in Seattle this fall, and began making plans to bring them to Juneau. But shortly before Christmas, the couple learned that one band member's visa was going to expire in early January, and that the group soon would have to leave the country.
"It was crazy," said Haugland, who is on the board of the Alaska Folk Festival. She and Diaz were at the Juneau Airport on Christmas Eve, in a last-ditch effort to find affordable plane fares for the last-minute trip. They did.
"This is a really exciting event for Juneau." Haugland said. "I think people here really enjoy Latin music, as well as folk music, so this is a perfect combination."
Diaz organized several concerts when he lived in Seattle and he accompanied Cambalache, a Seattle salsa band, to the 2002 Alaska Folk Festival. He moved to Juneau in December 2002 and has been searching for bands to bring to Juneau.
Web exclusive: Free sample album!
The following six-song MP3 album, featuring music by Compaz-Andino, is provided free courtersy of the artists. To find out more about their albums and music you can contact them at firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com.
The songs (right-click or click-and-hold mouse button, then choose "save link as" option):
1. La Cumparsita (Tango) 3.7MB
2. Otro Bbuchipluma (Joropo) 3.1MB
3. Tico Tico (Samba) 3.5MB
4. Yo Me Llamo Cumbia (Cumbia) 3.2MB
5. El Condor Pasa (Danza Incaica) 6.2MB
6. El Pajaro Campana (Galopa) 3.8MB
(All songs remain the property of Compaz Andino)
Did you enjoy these songs? Would you like more local performers and performances posted online? Do you have songs or other material you are willing to contribute? The Empire is now building an online community highlighting local performances. Contact the Mark Sabbatini at 586-3740 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org for more details.
Juneau residents "are really open to different cultures," said Diaz, who is originally from Peru. "I perceived that the moment I moved here."
The music represents a wide range of sounds from South America, Diaz said.
"It's nostalgic," Diaz said of the band's music. "It brings back all the cultural influence from the Andes and Latin America."
Davila, the vocals of the duo, was born in Cali, Colombia. He studied music at the Instituto Popular de Cultura and art at the Universidad del Valle in Cali. Coy will play the pan flute in the performance. He also was born in Cali, and studied music at the Instituto Popular de Cultura and at the Universidad del Valle. He has done extensive research on Andean wind instruments, and handcrafts the instruments he uses in performances.
The concert will be at Centennial Hall at 8 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 8. Tickets are $12 at Hearthside Books and Rainy Day Books, and $14 at the door.