Benkos Bioho

Benkos Bioho and the Cimarrones

When the Spanish began to bring slaves from Africa to Colombia, there were some who escaped and began to form free, outlaw communities. These escaped slaves were called Cimarrones, and their communities and their enclaves were known as Palenques.
Benkos (called Domingo by the Spanish) Bioho is the most famous of all Cimarrones. He arrived in Cartagena de Indias in 1599, where he became the slave of Juan Gómez. The historian Fray Pedro Simón (1574-1628) wrote Benkos Bioho’s story in his epic work. According to Simón, the mistreatment of slaves by Gómez led Bioho to rebel and flee his master taking with him his wife, three other men and three other women. He also encouraged an additional 22 slaves, owned by Juan de Palacios, to rebel and flee with them. The group of 30 headed out into the swamps and camped near the village of Tolú — around 50 miles away.

Black Messiah D’Angelo: The Vanguard-Really Love

D’ Angelo’s New Album

My Commentary

I’ve always loved D’Angelo’s music and this album is now added to my roster as well. I grew up on the Neo Soul sound; Maxwell, D’Angelo, Erykah Badu, Lauryn Hill and the list goes on. D’Angelo was a power house and in the same league as his contemporaries until personal issues caused him to take a long hiatus, but that can be said for many of the greats (cough Lauryn Hill). I also don’t have to remind people why he is in such an elite league with albums like Brown Sugar and Voodoo. D’ Angelo always had the talent of mixing different aspects of African/Black American culture into an amazing stew of sound. This album is no different, it just has a extra dose of political and social commentary. Especially in light of the recent tragedies pertaining to police brutality that has finally surfaced into mainstream media again since 1992 (Rodney King) or the 60’s for that matter.

This album was a must and greatly needed; not only is the social commentary there, but the musicality is devastatingly good. Again not surprising if you’ve listened to D’Angelo’s overall resume. Some damn good music. Now let’s get into the tracks with The Needle Drop.

D’Angelo and The Vanguard-Black Messiah

This album is a 9.5

Slavery’s Exiles

Music by Lauryn Hill

Benin Plaques: Lost Kingdoms

Music by Blackalicious

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