Mexican classical guitar duo Rodrigo y Gabriela have released their first piece of new music in four years entitled “Cumbe.” This track, which roughly translates to the dance of the people of color, is accompanied by a live session video released on the duo’s YouTube page.
“Cumbe,” is a tribute to cumbia music, which originated in Colombia, and has heavy ties to indigenous and African roots. This track, like many of their song features the two playing a duet on their signature flamenco guitars, with both artists switching off between rhythm and lead parts.
Both artists are set to record a full-length album later this year, which is set to be released in early 2019. Currently both artists are in the midst of a three night concert event at the Hollywood Bowl, in Los Angeles, California, featuring an orchestra led by acclaimed conductor Gustavo Dudamel.
Rodrigo y Gabriela are set to return to the Hollywood Bowl next month, to kick off their next North American tour. This tour is currently scheduled for over 26 dates across the United states and is set to end at the Sonoma Harvest Music Festival, in Glen Ellen, California on October 24.
The duo met each other in Mexico City at the age of 15 where they connected over a shared love of heavy metal music. Eventually both artists began making music together, with Gabriela joining Rodrigo and his brother as a guitarist for their heavy metal band Tierra Ácida, which fell apart in the late 90s.
Eventually both guitarists left Mexico City to move to Ixtapa, a resort town in south west Mexico where their live session of “Cumbe,” was recorded, and where the two began to form their musical style. After growing tired of the niche rock scene in Mexico, both artists decided to leave the country and go to Dublin, Ireland, where they made a name for themselves playing in various small venues.
“We both needed something different. After seven years of playing around Mexico we had done the band thing, the metal thing – the Spinal Tap thing!” Rodrigo told Irish indie site cluas.com in 2002. “It came to a point where we wanted to play a different kind of music, something we could make as our own.”
The guitarists eventually recorded a demo in Ireland in 2001, which was eventually reworked to their debut album Re-Foc which was released the following year. They followed up this release with four more studio albums, the most recent being 2014’s 9 Dead Alive.
While the duo are no longer linked romantically, both continue to tour and make music together under the same name they have used since 2000. In 2017 the duo kicked off a tenth-anniversary tour for their acclaimed 2007 self-titled album.
Rodrigo y Gabriela North American Tour
9/17 – Hollywood Bowl – Los Angeles, CA
9/18 – Hollywood Bowl – Los Angeles, CA
9/20 – Belly Up – Aspen, CO – SOLD OUT
9/21 – Red Rocks Amphitheatre – Morrison, CO
9/22 – Strings Music Festival – Steamboat Springs, CO – SOLD OUT
9/24 – Brooklyn Bowl Las Vegas – Las Vegas, NV
9/25 – Rialto Theatre – Tucson, AZ
9/26 – Mesa Arts Center – Mesa, AZ
9/28 – Belly Up Tavern – Solana Beach, CA – SOLD OUT
9/29 – Belly Up Tavern – Solana Beach, CA – SOLD OUT
9/31 – Mountain Winery – Saratoga, CA
10/1 – UC Theatre Taube Family Music Hall – Berkeley, CA
10/4 – Van Duzer Theatre – Arcata, CA
10/5 – Arlene Schnitezer Concert Hall – Portland, OR
10/7 – Chateau Ste. Michelle Winery – Woodinville, WA
10/8 – SKOOKUM Festival – Vancouver, Canada
10/11 – McDonald Theatre – Eugene, OR
10/12 – Britt Pavilion – Jacksonville, OR
10/14 – Martin Woldson Theater at The Fox – Spokane, WA
10/15 – Emerson Cultural Center – Bozeman, MT
10/16 – Red Butte Garden Amphitheatre – Salt Lake City, UT
10/18 – Jackson Hole Center for the Arts Theater – Jackson, WY
10/19 – Wilma Theatre – Missoula, MT
10/21 – Crest Theatre – Sacramento, CA
10/22 – Grand Sierra Resort & Casino – Grand Theatre – Reno, NV
10/23 – Sonoma Harvest Music Festival – Glen Ellen, CA – SOLD OUT