Lost links & Re-ups

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Slinging tuneage like some fried or otherwise soused short-order cook

18 September 2013


The most distinctive music of Uruguay is to be found in the tango & candombe; both genres have been recognized by UNESCO as an Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.

Candombe originated from the Río de la Plata region, from music African slaves brought with them to the New World, from their dances & from their percussion music.

Popular candombe musicians include Hugo Fattoruso & Rubén Rada. Fattoruso has been a longtime part of the Uruguayan & Latin American music scene. He was a member of the rock band Los Shakers who I will post below.

The purest form of candombe takes place each Sunday night on the streets of Montevideo, where many drummers assemble, playing their drums under the moon lit sky along the Isla de Flores.

Candombe-beat began in the late 60s with El Kinto, a band featuring Rubén Rada & Eduardo Mateo. Emerging at the same time as Los Shakers, they forged their own identity with very little Western influence.

Here for your edification are fourteen crucial tracks by these Uruguayan legends. The band’s line-up included members of various popular Uruguayan candombe bands. It also featured the compositional skills of poet/panhandler & acid casualty Eduardo Mateo (Ángel Eduardo Mateo López) along with his alter-ego, candombe legend Rubén Rada. El Kinto began their brief but eventful life in music playing in the dark shadows at Orfeo Negro (Black Orpheus), a night club near the Portones de Carrasco in Montevideo, Uruguay. Inspired by the way Tropicalistas like Os Mutantes were transforming the pop music of Brazil, El Kinto embraced their own native music forms. They integrated candombe & bossa nova into beat music, but they also added their own notion of ‘psicodelics’. They experimented with new sounds from their guitars, new types of vocal delivery, new ways of striking the drums (with little brooms, with gavels, or their hands).

The beat of candombe formed the rhythm, bossa nova played a large role in its chords & structure, as did traditional Uruguayan folk music.

In 1964, Miguel Mattos formed the band The Hit Fingers. After a few personnel changes, Mattos changed the name to The Damned with Walter Cambón & Eduardo Mateo on guitars, Ernesto Soca on piano, Mattos playing bass, & Carlos ‘Chango’ Castro on drums. Between 1964 & 1966 they were active in Montevideo as well as Buenos Aires. In 1966 they again changed their name to The Knights & recorded an album of original songs (sung in English) for the label Sondor. Shortly after the recording was made Miguel Mattos left & Rubén Rada joined the group as singer & conga player with Luis Sosa on drums & Antonio ‘Lobito’ Lagarde on bass. Ernesto decided to go in a more electrified direction & once again the group changed its name, this time to El Kinto Conjunto though they would be known simply as El Kinto.

In 1968, Urban Moraes joined El Kinto, replacing Lobito Lagarde on bass. At the same time Rubén Rada left the band & Mario "Chichito" Cabral joined as percussionist. This left an obvious gap on vocals, so Eduardo Mateo, Urban Moraes, & Walter Cambón took up vocal duties.

When the group finally dissolved in 1970, the line-up was Mateo on guitar & vocals, Walter Cambón on guitar, Urbano Moraes on bass & vocals,  Chiche Cabral as percussionist, & Luis Sosa on drums. After El Kinto called it quits, Rubén Rada, Chiche Cabral, & Lobito Lagarde formed the band Totem. Walter Cambón & Luis Sosa formed Limonada. Both groups became very popular candombe-beat bands. Urbano Moraes went on to a successful solo career. Eduardo Mateo died in 1990, having composed & recorded a vast catalogue of fantastic music that is well worth seeking out.

As one journalist noted in 1969, “El Kinto, directed by the brilliant Mateo, and amplified to the maximum... creates a frenzy of rhythmic music in which—with force and conviction—pure wave ‘beat’ is synthesized with the warmth of the African drums.

The result of the group’s tireless experiments is music have stood the test of time & still sounds fresh & engaging today.

 El Kinto – Circa 1968, Clave 72-35066, 1977. 
decryption code in comments

Lado 1 – 

Don Pascual
Muy lejos te vas
Voy pensando
Siempre vas
Estoy sin ti
Yo volveré por ti

Lado 2 –

Mejor me voy
Ni me puedes ver
Suena Blanca espuma
Principe azul


Los Shakers formed in 1963 in Montevideo, at the suggestion Hugo & Osvaldo Fattoruso’s uncle. Hugo Fattoruso - piano, guitar, & vocals & his brother Osvaldo Fattoruso - guitar & vocals hooked up with Roberto Pelin’ Capobianco - bass & vocals, & Caio Villa - drums. They started out playing jazz & avant-garde music at nightclubs like The Hot Club of Montevideo for a while. However, Beatlemania was sweeping through South America at the time, & the lads wanted their own ‘Fab Four’ group.
The influence The Beatles had on the group can be heard in their earliest releases & can be seen in the photograph below, from early 1965.

They moved to Buenos Aires in search of a recording contract with a major labels & almost immediately signed with the label Odeon Pops. In 1965 they released their first album, the self-titled Los Shakers. For their second album Shakers For You their playing was more sophisticated, introducing new elements to the band's style, especially psychedelia.

By the time they recorded their last studio album for Odeon in 1968, La Conferencia Secreta del Toto's Bar, their music had gone in a new heavier direction. On  Toto's Bar their sound was that of psychedelic music mixed with candombe & tango sounds. Odeon was not happy with the new direction & left the group without any promotion or support. At this time the band broke up & Hugo & Osvaldo went on to their own projects in Rio de la Plata. Osvaldo died of cancer in July 2012.

The album Los Inéditos de… was released in 1977 after the band had split up, but as the name implies, these were inéditos (unpublished or unreleased tracks from the original band).

decryption code in comments


Hasta Luego Cocodrilo
La Larga Noche
My Bonnie
Dejame Ir
Que Amor
Submarino Amarillo


Esta es Mi Fiesta
No Fuimos
Solo Quiero Estar Contigo
Pelota de Goma Roja
Nena Baila Shake
Estoy Pensando
Quiero ser Tu Hombre



  1. El Kinto
    Los Shakers

  2. Excelente, me llevo el de El Kinto


    1. Gracias por el comentario. Espero que estén disfrutando de El Kinto.

  3. muchas gracias!! fue muy dificil encontar circa!


    1. Ustedes son bienvenidos. Me alegra poder compartir esa música fantástica.

  4. Gracias por compartir. Es un disco muy difícil de conseguir (en formato físico y digital). Saludos desde Uruguay!

    1. Gracias por sus amables comentarios ti. Usted no ha mencionado qué banda (tanto?) Pero El Kinto es simplemente uno de mis favoritos (Rubén Rada). Me alegro de que podía hacer esto y gracias de nuevo.

  5. Che no entiendo, cómo descargo?

    1. Copie el código de descifrado de los comentarios para el álbum que desea. Seleccione el título debajo de la portada en el artículo anterior. Se le mandará a MEGA. Ellos van a requerir un código de descifrado. Pegue el código que ha copiado (simple corte y pegar) donde se indica y descargar a su ordenador.

  6. Muchas gracias desde Brasil! Me gusta mucho este genero latino. Tenemos un similar en Brasil, llamamos a carimbó do estado del Pará. Estoy muy feliz de haber encontrado!! Ahora, voy a revelarla ;)

    1. Realmente aprecio el comentario de Brasil. Una gran cantidad de buena música a partir de ahí abajo. Gracias por el comentario.