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Concertinas in Bolivia


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It came as quite a surprise for me – and as far as I can ascertain it has had little coverage here on c.net – that the concertina is a popular folk instrument in Bolivia. Here some vids to prove it.


Concertina Boliviana (solo):

Concertina Boliviana Pro (trio):

Julio Crespo y Conjunto:

Agrupación Folklórica Pukara - El Soldado (only sound):

Agrupación Folklórica Pukara - El Soldado (sound & photo's)

Alaxpacha - agravios (Cueca) – Bolivia (Waldo Pablo Trujillo Riveros on conc; unfortunaltey the concertina seems not to be the favourite instrument of the camera man, or the concertina player must be rather camera shy): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5DF5XlKqEwM (2:43)



(Alaxpacha gives some 70 hits with every now and then a concertina in sight).

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Hi Mark


I don't think there is a continent, or region on this earth where a concertina is missing, (not quite country). All the ones I've come across from South America are of the English variety, and pretty nice instruments. Not an Anglo in sight.





Edited by Leo
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It is very exciting to find the English Concertina appearing in other cultures, and it is interesting to see it in a Bolivian band playing Bolivian songs.


I followed the links from the video and found some other videos of the band called "Alapacha". They have a webpage which is in Spanish and using Google language thingy I found some details on the concertina player.


Waldo Riveros Pablo Trujillo

Place and date of birth La Paz-Bolivia, January 15, 1945

Occupation: Accountant General, Musician Self

Instruments: 20 years of CONCERTINA

- then there is a big list of recordings on LPs and CDs


The videos I watched so far don't show the concertina player much, however, the band has 8 members and they have a singer.

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  • 4 months later...
  • 4 years later...

Reviving a post from a half-decade ago, but wanted to share a neat article in a Bolivian paper I ran across, which I intend to use to flesh out the depiction of English concertina on Wikipedia. I can translate Spanish just fine, but using gTranslate here since I'm lazy:





Coloquio de la concertina

Por Ramón Rocha Monroy - 6/11/2012


Tarata, the beautiful colonial city of our high valley was the scene of a new Colloquium Concertina with exemplary sense of participation countrymen and countrywomen, who overwhelmed the market. Excellent sound and a massive presence of musicians and concertinistas all duly sprinkled with legendary Tarata chicha spurs were the most suitable to ensure the success of the party.

There I found several friends cultists running the Sica Sica, including my colleague Dr. Zambrana Eufronio García, with whom I shared good times as a student and then a professor at the Faculty of Law. He is a virtuoso concertinista interesting and gave me a cheat sheet on this instrument invented in 1829 by Sir Charles Wheaston in his native England.

It is not difficult to deduce that the concertina came to Bolivia with rail and occupying a small space in the voluminous luggage Bolivian Railway technicians or engineers mines Patino Mines. Concertina spread in the highlands and the mesothermal valleys and rooted in folk music to underscore its nostalgia and sentiment. This is our favorite music: cueca, huayño the Kaluyo, the little dance that also have happy, tristonas, sentimental or picaresque characters, and no fanfare to which we subjected the bands and the Andean aerophones, which are hegemonizing Bolivian music.

Eufronio Garcia has the power to remember a long list of Cochabamba concertinistas, many of whom were present as Severino Montano and siblings of the same name, Punata; Raul Claros, the Euphronios himself, René Torrico Alberto Claure, José Correa, Alfredo Soliz Bejar, Symphorian Jimenez, Yuri Ortuño, Enrique Paredes, Alberto Gamarra, Alfredo Rojas, Jorge Coca Gonzalo Mamani, La Paz and other deceased as Nestor brothers, James and David Beam, Andrew Garcia, Jose Rosales, Victor Fernandez, Jose Gamboa and Pedro Cossio; Jaime Hinojosa, Simon Tudela, Villarroel and Gerardo Cecilio Iriarte.

The symposium was also a tribute to Don Victor Fernandez and our good friend Gerardo Iriarte, whom we called affectionately Ciciro or trowel, cultivator of this extraordinary instrument.

In November 1982 I did an interview with Don Victor Fernandez in his armory shop located on the road leading to the Convent.

He showed me the feats that made concertinas to repair old and historical and technical knowledge about our beloved Sica Sica. Then he invited me to accompany him to the kiosk in the square where I had the honor of ripping guitar while he gave his serenade to the colonial town of his birth. He had come a government delegation to the UDP, including Education Minister Alfonso Camacho Peña also Tarateno, and we led the market to enjoy a delicious lunch. Don Victor is linked to our best memories. I used to play with another unforgettable friend, guitarist Canelas Nani, and were gathered together with the latest shadows of night. The granddaughter of Don Victor lived in the San Martin Avenue, but sometimes not hear the doorbell, other reason for Don Victor grasp a concertina and hitting a few bars to be heard, as the granddaughter went immediately to the window and cried I'm coming, grandpa.

The meeting also served to see a big old friend, comrade and fellow soldier in my early years, Edgar Barriga.

With him and his distinguished family Barriga Vlahovic unforgettable moments spent in the shade of a beautiful pacay.

The author is a chronicler of the city

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