El Negrito del Batey (The Black Man from the Batey) composed by Hector J. Díaz and Medardo Guzmán, in the voice of Alberto Beltrán with La Sonora Matancera, is a signature merengue song that many people in Latin America easily recognize. The song presents us with an intoxicating combination of rhythm and lyrics, which appear to walk right into the trap of stereotyping black people only to later throw the stereotype out of the window. It is hence perfect for our Were You Listening series for its subtle and not so subtle message.
Were we listening?
This episode accompanies the Yo Soy Merengue episode of the second season of our podcast. In this episode we hear from two Afro-Dominican guests: music and dance educator, composer, arranger, producer, and co-founder of Areíto Arts, Edwin Ferreras, and University of Northern Colorado Professor, music producer, recording and mixing engineer, arranger, composer, and bandleader Socrates Garcia. And we also hear from host Andrés Hincapié’s mom Margarita Noreña!
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Host/Director of Series: Andrés Hincapié, PhD
Producer: Melissa Villodas, PhD Candidate
Graphic Content Creator: Susan Mykalcio