Saturday, 14 July 2018

Wara "El Inca" (Música Progresiva Boliviana) 1973 Bolivia Hard Psych Folk Rock


Wara "El Inca" (Música Progresiva Boliviana) 1973 mega rare  Bolivia Hard  Psych Folk Rock 
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This album is essential in any Latin American collection. Warais a tremendous Bolivian band that records this record with a clearly progressive sound, it is a spectacular work that contains sounds closer to psychedelia with a mix of Andean sounds but milder than we could imagine. Later Wara would give a very big turn in his style, would concentrate absolutely in the fusion of Andean sounds, becoming an almost “folkloric” band. During the nineties they returned to a sound more fused but this time with a New Age air. Their lyrics are politically moving, added to the simple, and complex at the same time, musical creation with luxury arrangements, and with a beautiful fusion between progressive psychedelic and symphonic rock with native instruments, make me relate Wara a lot with the Argentine group Backlighting. I’m not saying that this album is totally finished, but rather an album more than pleasant and that in its high moments has nothing to envy to any prog-folk band in the world…..~


Wara’s first LP “El Inca” (1973) 
Pioneers of progressive music in Bolivia. 
Wara was formed in the early s, as a progressive rock band, among its main influences were deep purple and uriah heep groupings, whose compositions played. 
With influences of hard, progressive and psychedelic rock, he settled as one of the bands revelations in the 70’s in Bolivia and settled the bases of fusion between rock and folk, so it is considered a cult band, By different artists and new bands of both rock and bolivian folk….~


This Bolivian mega rarity isn’t one of my favourites. Wara plays a quite amateurish form of progressive rock with some hard rock and folk influences. The instrumental work is mediocre at best and the compositions are nothing very special. The highlights include “Realidad” and “Wara” which are both pretty OK songs but unfortunately the rest of the songs aren’t that good. 
I can’t call this one as a solid record. When I gave it a try for the first time I expected pretty much from it but sadly the album turned out to be a letdown. El Inca is not a horrible album but definitely not a very good one either…..by…CooperBolan….~


A mythical album, cause this one is among a handful of Prog-influenced albums, that came out in Bolivia.Wara were active since 1972 as a six-piece group with the typical bass/drums/keyboards/guitar/vocals set-up, but this work includes a few guests on violin, cello, flute and oboe to give emphasis on the band’s folky roots.“El inca” (with the impressive subtitle “Musica progresiva boliviana”) is basically a Hard/Psych/Folk Rock with some welcome complexity, featuring long tracks with climate changes and over the top vocals (a few crying parts recall of a Spanish Ian Gillan).Also some obvious Classical leanings on strings and keyboards.Good tracks with solid electric explosions, delicate flutes, grandiose violin and decent organ/synth variations.They produced myriads of albums after this work, which however lean towards pure Pop and Folk…..by…apps79 …..~


The national revolution of 1952 meant a complete change of vision of the “country” in the Bolivian territory. This exchange of ideology, both in the political and economic spheres, also included youth concerns, embedded itself in the university intellect, in popular culture, archeology, the forgotten, the forbidden, everything was the subject of research in the eagerness to discover the true national identity, the deep Bolivia. It was a time when young people stepped on spaces that were previously being deprived by the political and social bureaucracy; the forgers of contemporary Bolivia were the protagonists. 

This undoubted transformation of the youth ideology, with the advent of the seventies decade, post new wave, paid off in Bolivia. As it is known at the beginning of the sixties, Rock and Roll came to Bolivia through the radio programs directed by privileged characters who were lucky enough to have a turntable and also acquire the works in vinyl abroad; works that reached the public randomly attached to the disgust of the foreign because as we said were times in which it was to rescue the value of national culture. Out of all complications Rock survived and its representatives, Musicians of the New Wave, spread and created in society. 

The youth parties, the presentations in plazas and confectioneries, the university anniversaries, were stages of the first musical experimentations of the Bolivian rock scene, improvised conglomerations in which amateur bands shone, bands that even tried the phonomímica, “Guateques a lo Boliviano” in that music was accompanied to loud volume with tambourines, bongoes or keys making endless rounds of A Go Go, dances triggered in psychedelia, much peace and love. Nobody will forget the Splendid, Bonny Boys Hots, The Dhag Dhags, The Donkeys, The Laser in La Paz the capital, The 606 Group of Cochabamba, The UFOs of Huanuni de Potosi, or The Daltons of Santa Cruz, the latter curiously were the pioneers in the nascent capital of progress, outdoor concerts with the company of many chicha camba, 

Soon after, the record companies that had just arrived in Bolivia achieved great impetus in the musicians, since Contests and Festivals were held with gratifying prizes such as recordings of EPs, or sponsorship. The Blackbyrds, The Crikets - later The Grillos -, The Loving Darks or Climax, were some of the groups benefited with that type of decorations that served as a catapult to capture their art and immortalize their name. 

In this context, the Conga Group would be born, led by Carlos Daza, Jorge Cronembold, Jorge Komori and Dante Usquiano, young people who are restless for music, who would hopefully form an ensemble dedicated to making dance music, aimed at youth festivals, where rhythms were demanded, even Central Americans accommodated to Heavy Rock. For reasons of reorganization the group soon reformed its essence by becoming TABU. 

The Tabú Group recorded two songs in the early seventies; Cafe and She is my Woman, with the notorious nuance of Santanera influence, a lot of rhythm, almost tropical, keyboard that predominates all the time, a very melodic voice, low puncturing and with much virtuosity. The success of this first era fell suddenly by misfortune, when a youth party that closed the group Tabú happened the murder of a fanatic present, all because of a settling of scores between two youth groups from La Paz. The band separated for a while, and came back with a new proposal that would forever change the history of Bolivia music. 

The brief distancing of the scenarios would bear fruit. The members of the disappeared Tabú group entered their studies at the National Conservatory of Music of La Paz, in the Department of Modern Music, from then on they would no longer fall into empiricism for their compositions because they had certainly acquired their own knowledge. 

Wara would be born in the early seventies. Name that comes from the astral conception of the WARA WARA the Andean cosmovision, “Light of the Star”, light of the sun, light that gives life, guiding light. In musical Wara was the combination of study and research to achieve a different artistic science, progressive in every way. The songs were assembled thanks to the coexistence of all the musicians in the secluded area of ​​Cota Cota, the lyrics were created with the reading of books of indigenous ideology and sociological content such as Sick People and the Bronze Race of Alcides Arguedas, or La Revolución Fausto Reinaga’s India Certainly life in community was an incentive to compose true masterpieces. For the purpose they achieved the adhesion of Musicians of the Conservatory of Classical Music, both to complement the work that was essential and to achieve arrangements never before heard in the national rock. Wara with his own resources proposed a trip in advance for the universe of Symphonic Rock, whose formula was just being primitively brewing in Europe. 

On the other hand, everything that meant the spiritual journey for Dante Usquiano, his university studies pertinent to the career of Archeology, that link for the discovery of the Andean culture, the Andean cosmovision, did not allow him to be part of the promotion of the new album that It was forging. While Wara was accommodating the pieces of his album, a vocalist was summoned to interpret the songs, with the vocal authority demanded by the group’s new style, powerful treble, vocal strength, the one indicated was Nataniel Gonzáles, the “Orisean nightingale” from of the Steepenstones group and their adherence was instantaneous. 

Already deep in the seventies Wara was the result of an evolution, the Andean cosmovision was at most a factor that would achieve that the spiritual and intellectual abilities of the musicians evolve towards the “Andean Progression”; an outcome in which joining the Andean music with the seventies progressive rock -extranjero- was a very pertinent need and a possible dream to be realized. The unfolding vinyl disc was released in mid-1973, under the title of WARA “EL INKA” MUSICA PROGRESIVA BOLIVIANA, in the graphic on the cover is one of the guardians printed on top of the Puerta de Sol from Tiahuanaku; inside the disc you can see the songs with the letters of the same deciphered, the photos of the members of the group; the list of songs on the back cover describes the content in the order, Side A: THE INKA (Lord of the earth), REALITY, SONG FOR A SAD LITTLE GIRL, Side B: WARA (Star), KENKO (Stone Land). As an epilogue, the inscription “THIS DISC OF YOUR EXPRESSION IS LEFT, WE MAKE IT AS A NEW EXPERIENCE, WITHIN OUR MUSIC TO ARRIVE TO YOUR BODY, MIND AND SOUL”. In the memorable formation of Wara “El Inka” include Nataniel Gonzáles in vocals and choirs, Pedro Sanjinés on keyboards and synthesizers, Omar León on bass, Carlos Daza on electric guitar, and Jorge Cronembold on drums…..~



The sixties have been the most difficult and at the same time most amazing period that has ever occurred in the world. Martin Luther King marched for Civil Rights from Alabama to Washington in 1965. The Buddhist monks were demonstrating against the war in remote Vietnam, Churchill died in England at the age of ninety, the troubadours of rebellion were born to music, The Beatles. The 60s, a vital point in cosmic geography, in which society and the world’s youth, evolved towards very marked channels from which emerged “Rock”, the authentic father of contemporary music. 
In Oruro, for those distant days, we were part of a responsible generation, with exceptions of course; the great majority would go to break through, through life in the following decades, in the midst of convulsions and changes that occurred in the field of sexuality, politics, styles and ways of life. Speaking of old times, the key that deciphers the destiny of a generation, is in the music, and its influence in its formation and orientation. The music, soft, evocative, warm, sentimental, strident, was able to vary customs, habits, customs, fashions
The one who was or felt young in the 60s, knows that those who made rock, ballad, “folkloric”, “original” or popular music, a pastime or a profession, chose it too, as the way of life that helped them to make contact with other boys, like themselves with “something to say”, uploaded to a stage on Radio Oruro, Radio El Cóndor, La Cancha Oficial or the Open Air Theater, trying to establish a real communication between all . That youth that went ahead looking for itself, or at least trying, gave a touch of optimism and vitality to existence. His rebellious spirit was able to assume with authenticity his role in the middle, giving his face and chest to life and although it seems strange, it was not a lost or frustrated generation.
Nataniel Gonzales Rivero, whom I consider myself a contemporary, in the 50s begins to discover art, through singing. Prominent in the competitions for new talents, was in his childhood “El ruiseñor orureño”, performing songs of “Joselito” the Spanish José Jiménez Fernández. Adolescent still, sings waltzes, boleros, and began his professionalization in the second half of the 60’s along with “Los Fantasmas” with songs by Roberto Carlos, Los Iracundos, Los Gatos, Palito Ortega, Leo Dan and others. “Los Fantasmas”, Enrique and Hugo Mendoza and Justino Vargas (Tino) on drums, as well as Raúl Amurrio on rhythm guitar, had won the 1st National Song Festival, sponsored by the Philips House in 1966, with the instrumental theme “Go-Go-Ghost”. In May of the year 1968 they concur in representation of Oruro, to the Festival summoned by Cacodisbo realized in the city of Cochabamba, in the Stage Félix Capriles. Later, in the same city, they enter the studios of the label Lauro y Compañía, and for the Caracol label, they record on vinyl, with the voice of Nataniel Gonzales a simple album, with two tracks: “Ana María” on the side “A” and on the “B” side “Do not let me be misunderstood.” 

The next stage in the artistic life of Nataniel, was the formation of a supergroup so far without paragon: “STEPPEN STONES”. The “English Wave” had arrived in Oruro, the radio stations “El Cóndor”, “Radio Oruro”, mainly, they spread to The Beatles, the Rolling Stones. The film “El Graduado” had premiered and the songs “Los Sonidos del silencio” and “Mrs. Robinson”, with their own feeling, were played by Nataniel, “Korean” Gonzales, Angel Castillo, Lionel Rodo and “Tordo” Lafuente. The “Steppen Stones” came to the album, recording for the Lyra label in the city of La Paz, the beat songs: “Come under my boat” and “I am a Steppen Stone”, in September of the same year they performed at the Open Air Theater of the Universidad Mayor de San Simón, and in the University Dining Hall. Years later, the group declined, however this band left its mark on local and national rock, because they performed difficult songs from The Animals, Rolling Stones, Deep Purpple, Uriah Heep and Three Dog Night. In the line of the traditional, would be the successes of the moment.
A new trend, in a different line, already converted into an image and a symbol, with his tight timbre of voice and personality, almost without intending it, led Nataniel to integrate the first formation of “Wara”, in the city of La Peace; the result, a long-lasting album, considered a special “classic” that will be discussed later. 

THE CLASSIC AND THE POP … 

An approximation between popular music and “serious” music occurred with the liberation of taboos, beyond the musical limits proper to each of them, and the enrichment of the exotic; jazz merged with “serious” music, and still lives frequently in symbiosis with rock. The classicist influence of “serious” music developed in such a way that free the “rock and roll” of its rigid, functionally bound schematization, turned “rock” into the catalyst that stimulated the emergence of groups like “Frank Zappa and The Mothers of Invention ”, which used all kinds of musical material and Pop Art, to compose a" total musical artistic work “. The "Symphonic Rock” appears, with the super bands “Deep Purple” and its “ of the Sixth Concert of Brandenburg and the "Pathetic Symphony” by Tschiakowski, also the “Moody Blues” and the first Pop Symphony of the history: “Nights in white satin” of the album “Days of Future Passed”, with the Lóndon Festival Orchesta ( 1968). Symphonic rock as in classical music works, integrates the songs of chamber orchestras, even full orchestras. of the Sixth Concert of Brandenburg and the “Pathetic Symphony” by Tschiakowski, also the “Moody Blues” and the first Pop Symphony of the history: “Nights in white satin” of the album “Days of Future Passed”, with the Lóndon Festival Orchesta ( 1968). Symphonic rock as in classical music works, integrates the songs of chamber orchestras, even full orchestras. 

Pink Floyd on the album “Ummagumma” (1969), introduces electroacoustic structures above the listener; sounds in space, through consoles and rotating mills. Sound mixtures “interconnected, birdsong, footsteps, buzzing bees, motorcycle engines, sirens, delayed harmony changes, long crescendos prepared, elusive melodic lines, renouncing the meter and the accented rhythm, voices as a means of expression or communication of texts or special lyrics, compositions full of whispers, shouts, guttural sounds "are the expression of” Progressive Rock “, considered a subgenre of rock that appears in the late 60’s and is very popular until the middle of the 70’s. It is called "Progressive” by musical progression, advance of rock music, originally of bucolic sonority, acoustic of slow time to another urban, electrical, with marked influence of blues and jazz. The artistic works developed in this era and their musical signifiers, aimed to generate moods and acoustic and sound impressions, which required a great mental opening. Latin America also had bands that cultivated Progressive Rock like Almendra, Sui Géneris and El Reloj in Argentina; in Chile “Los Jaivas”, fusion with traditional music. Mexico had in the seventies the Dugs Dugs, The Ritual and the Revolution of Emiliano Zapata. In Bolivia “Wara” first and then “Climax” have produced enduring works that now, as a catharsis before a real absence of new proposals in the genre, attract with their records, “El Inca” and “

THE INCA… 

The long play album (vinyl), recorded in 1973 by "Wara”, entitled “El Inca” and subtitled “Bolivian Progressive Music”, with Nataniel Gonzales, in the lead voice, Pedro Sanjinez, organ, piano, choirs; Omar León, bass, George Cronembold, percussion and Carlos Daza, guitar and choirs, as well as guest chamber musicians, under the supervision of Maestro Dn. Nestor Olmos (†), Pablo Vezin, flute; Jaime Gallardo, cello, Freddy Céspedes 1st violin, Vicenta Claramount, violin; Walter Álvarez, bassoon; Stefan Rinderknecht, cello, Gustavo Oroza, oboe and Zelma Guerra, choirs, is essentially more than “Progressive Music” is “Folk Rock” “Progressive Rock” and also “Symphonic Rock”. The music of “El Inca” tends to reach the core of the listener’s interior, offers an ecological floor, an energy source with an enveloping effect that impacts and fills interior voids and integrates being, rescuing Bolivian myths and legends; it is perceived that each and every one of the musicians contribute, there is no exaggerated virtuosic exhibitionism, and what does exist is a coherent development. The Inca “is inscribed as a work of art conceived within the universal musical currents of those years, as a whole it has a rational construction and the equivalence of 4 sound levels, the set of winds (oboe, flute, clarinet), the strings (violins and cello), electronic instruments (guitar, electronic bass), percussion (acoustic drums), a rhythm that embodies the spirituality of the Andean magical ritual. rescuing Bolivian myths and legends; it is perceived that each and every one of the musicians contribute, there is no exaggerated virtuosic exhibitionism, and what does exist is a coherent development. The Inca "is inscribed as a work of art conceived within the universal musical currents of those years, as a whole it has a rational construction and the equivalence of 4 sound levels, the set of winds (oboe, flute, clarinet), the strings (violins and cello), electronic instruments (guitar, electronic bass), percussion (acoustic drums), a rhythm that embodies the spirituality of the Andean magical ritual. rescuing Bolivian myths and legends; it is perceived that each and every one of the musicians contribute, there is no exaggerated virtuosic exhibitionism, and what does exist is a coherent development. The Inca "is inscribed as a work of art conceived within the universal musical currents of those years, as a whole it has a rational construction and the equivalence of 4 sound levels, the set of winds (oboe, flute, clarinet), the strings (violins and cello), electronic instruments (guitar, electronic bass), percussion (acoustic drums), a rhythm that embodies the spirituality of the Andean magical ritual. , it is inscribed as a work of art conceived within the universal musical currents of those years; as a whole it has a rational construction and the equivalence of 4 sound levels, the set of winds (oboe, flute, clarinet), strings (violins and cello), electronic instruments (guitar, electronic bass), percussion (acoustic drums) ), rhythm that embodies the spirituality of the Andean magical ritual. , it is inscribed as a work of art conceived within the universal musical currents of those years; as a whole it has a rational construction and the equivalence of 4 sound levels, the set of winds (oboe, flute, clarinet), strings (violins and cello), electronic instruments (guitar, electronic bass), percussion (acoustic drums) ), rhythm that embodies the spirituality of the Andean magical ritual. 

The voice of Nataniel Gonzales amazes and marvels us and introduces us to a pure musical trance; in this work of art supported by an enormous sensitivity; its tone, is tight to the elegance of the songs "Wara”, “El kenko” by Omar León and Dante Uzquiano, and the own compositions of the same Nataniel and Pedro Sanjinez, “Reality”, “The Inca” and “Song for a sad girl ”, who possess inner flexible serenity, very peculiar especially in the reflective of the letters that were then outlined, for large musical samples in the future. 

“El Inca”, the most personal work of “Wara”, can also be considered “Symphonic Rock”. In a point of lyricism of transcendence, colorist, spiritual and profound, it is a mini - symphony of five subparts, plastically impolite, perfect. In the order of appreciation, the technique, the aesthetic value and fundamentally the revolutionary theme for their time, place them in a plane of difficult overcoming. The technique of “Wara” is one of the most valuable and positive because it manages to unite the vocal harmony with the rotundity of an eminently avant-garde instrumentation, with much rock in its sound, showing itself as an innovative group in all areas. “El Inca” was a new experience in Bolivian rock, the first and only one of “Wara”. “The Inca”

“WARA”, the return … 

In 1975, in September, Wara returns to perform in four recitals at the Municipal Theater of the city of La Paz, with a new repertoire “authentically folklorist”. Its members (without Nataniel Gonzales in his new formation), have had to realize that the “local rock” as such was not the way, and to avoid that his vocation was not diluted in a labyrinth of difficulties that will determine its extinction and they will nullify the opportunities to grow in the difficult world of the show, they were defined by the ancestral folklore, playing native music with native instruments, made with ancestral materials and resources, zampoñas, tarkas, choquelas, pinquillos, mosellos, charangos, drums and unconventional instruments , they were the first to legitimize the use of electronic bass in later musical formations of neo folklore. Undoubtedly the music of the folkloric and autochthonous genre, popularized by “Wara”, in almost 40 years, within a constant, allowed its diffusion, acceptance and consumption, not only by different social groups, but also by different cultural and ethnic groups , thus transcending its own cultural musical nature. The Maya, Paya, etc. they are the product of a very clear perception and of their musical objectives. Many groups in the present, follow their guidelines and vocal, instrumental, acoustic style. History that deserves a separate study. they allowed its diffusion, acceptance and consumption, not only by different social groups, but also by different cultural and ethnic groups, transcending its own cultural musical nature. The Maya, Paya, etc. they are the product of a very clear perception and of their musical objectives. Many groups in the present, follow their guidelines and vocal, instrumental, acoustic style. History that deserves a separate study. they allowed its diffusion, acceptance and consumption, not only by different social groups, but also by different cultural and ethnic groups, transcending its own cultural musical nature. The Maya, Paya, etc. they are the product of a very clear perception and of their musical objectives. Many groups in the present, follow their guidelines and vocal, instrumental, acoustic style. History that deserves a separate study. 

Nataniel Gonzales as an individual figure and “Wara” as a group, were two great contributions to national music in the seventies, two contributions that up to now have confirmed everything that was expected of them, their names already appear in the book of gold of the music. 

SPIRITUAL … 

Despite his individual fame, NATANIEL did not stop composing, creating, recording and singing; in the subsequent years of his time in “Wara”, he joined the “Aymara” group of renowned national and international prestige, but this is now history and present at the same time, his voice is one of the “without borders” of music. Yesterday the rock, today the folklore, (“Music of Masters” the “Continental Band”), identified with its revaluation, rich in experiences, is a kind of solitary poet who in the lyrics of his songs rides between the ancestral and the clarity of concepts of a certain sociopolitical position; his records are quite important to be ignored, because of his versatility and his influence in national music, in folklore, “Sariri” is a sample. Always linked to the idea that sound is the best companion of words, it is first and foremost a simple person with a great inner life, who has realized and still feels the eagerness to arrive at new things. He currently lives in France, in Vendome, on the outskirts of the city of Luz. Many years ago the “Andean Nightingale” emigrated to Europe, and today he walks through the streets of the old Paris of Gilbert Becaud, Aznavour, of Polnareff, Herve Vilard, Francoise Hardy, of Silvie Vartan and Jhonny Hallyday. Each year, as if completing a migratory cycle, he returns to Oruro, his home. Many years ago the “Andean Nightingale” emigrated to Europe, and today he walks through the streets of the old Paris of Gilbert Becaud, Aznavour, of Polnareff, Herve Vilard, Francoise Hardy, of Silvie Vartan and Jhonny Hallyday. Each year, as if completing a migratory cycle, he returns to Oruro, his home. Many years ago the “Andean Nightingale” emigrated to Europe, and today he walks through the streets of the old Paris of Gilbert Becaud, Aznavour, of Polnareff, Herve Vilard, Francoise Hardy, of Silvie Vartan and Jhonny Hallyday. Each year, as if completing a migratory cycle, he returns to Oruro, his home. 
This work has its origin in several long conversations held with Nataniel Gonzales Rivero, in the last two years, looking together yesterday, today and tomorrow. …….by…..Juan Manuel Fajardo……~



- Nataniel Gonzales - vocals 
- Carlos Daza - guitar 
- Pedro Sanjines - organ, piano 
- Omar Leon - bass 
- Jorge “George” Cronembold - drums, percussion 

- Pablo Vezin - flute 
- Jaime Gallardo, Stefan Rinderknecht - cello 
- Freddy Cespedes, Vicenta Claramount - violin 
- Zelma Guerra - backing vocals





Tracklist: 
01. El Inca (El Senor de la Tierra) (Nataniel Gonzales - Perico) - 7:01 
02. Realidad (Nataniel Gonzales - Perico) - 5:04 
03. Cancion Para una Nina Triste (Nataniel Gonzales - Perico) - 5:20 
04. Wara (Estrella) (Dante Usquiano - Perico) - 8:23 
05. Kenko (Tierra de Piedra) (Dante Usquiano - Omar Leon) - 6:18 

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