Tag Archives: Lara Bello

Charming Vocals by Environmentally Conscious Artist

Lara Bello – Sikame (Biophilia Records, 2017)

The music Spanish vocalist Lara Bello crosses over various musical boundaries. On the delightful album Sikame she combines southern Spanish influences, jazz, fado, Latin American rhythms, and other global music styles.

Lara us currently based in the USA and worked with musician and producer Gil Goldstein on this recording. The list of international musicians that area on Sikame is quite impressive, featuring well-known names in the areas of jazz, world music and flamenco.

Equally fascinating is the album packaging. Sikame has a physical format that opens 20 panels inspired by origami. The packaging, however, does not contain a physical CD. Instead, it includes a unique code to download the album. The paper used is certified by the Forest Stewardship Council. It’s hand-folded and printed using plant-based inks.

The line on Sikema includes Lara Bello vocals, percussion; Gil Goldstein on piano, accordion, rhodes, percussion; Romero Lubambo on guitar; Richard Bona on upright bass, electric bass; Lionel Loueke on guitar, vocals; Jorge Pardo on flute; Carles Benavent on mandolin; Leni Stern on ngoni; Samuel Torres on cajón and other percussion; and Rajiv Jayaweera on caxixi.

Sikame is remarkable album featuring the poetic and vocal talent of Lara Bello and some of the finest musicians in the New York and Spanish music scene.

Buy the digital download version of Sikame.


Lara Bello Releases Music Video in Anticipation of New Album

Spanish singer-songwriter Lara Bello will release a new album titled Sikame in 2017. As a preview, she has released an animated music video titled Sikame – El Alma de Oro.

The video was made by a new animation studio based in Granada (Spain) called El Buen Árbol, developed by two of Lara Bello’s favorite artists: Raúl Ruiz (El Niño de las Pinturas) and Lucas Carrillo.

Lara’s new recording features an impressive cast of world class musicians: Gil Goldstein, Richard Bona, Lionel Loueke, Jorge Pardo, Carles Benavent, Romero Lubambo, Rajiv Jayaweera, Leni Stern, Dave Eggar and Samuel Torres.

The album will be released by Biophilia Records, founded by pianist and composer Fabian Almazán, focused on music and ecology. The album will appear in a new physical format patented by the label.


The Diverse Sounds of Iberia and Cuba at EXIB 2016 Day 2 Showcases

The EXIB 2016 opening act on May 6th was captivating Spanish vocalist and composer Lara Bello. Although she’s originally from Granada, Lara Bello is currently based in New York City. Lara’s concert at Praça do Giraldo in the Evora town center was one of the highlights of the day, delivering an entrancing mix of sounds of the Mediterranean: flamenco, North African, jazz and Latin America.


Lara Bello at EXIB 2016 - Photo by Angel Romero
Lara Bello at EXIB 2016 – Photo by Angel Romero


Lara Bello uses flamenco and jazz vocal stylings and was accompanied by two superb Spanish instrumentalists, guitarist David Minguillón and percussionist David Gadea.
Lara Bello’s discography includes Niña Pez (2009) and Primero Amarillo Después Malva (2012).


Jaqueline at EXIB 2016 - Photo by Angel Romero
Jaqueline at EXIB 2016 – Photo by Angel Romero


The second act, award-winning fado singer Jaqueline was one of the most popular acts that night. Her charismatic presence on stage and her passionate, powerful voice drew in a large crowd. Although we’ve been given an image of the melancholic fado singer, there was no melancholy there. Jaqueline delivered well-known songs that Portuguese members of the audience were very familiar with, and they sang along.


Praça do Giraldo audience at EXIB 2016 - Photo by Angel Romero
Praça do Giraldo audience at EXIB 2016 – Photo by Angel Romero


Jaqueline was accompanied by three virtuoso musicians, who got an opportunity to showcase their talent with an instrumental piece. The lineup included Paulo Ferreira on guitarra portuguesa (Portuguese guitar), Jerónimo Mendes on Viola de Fado (fado guitar) and Miguel Silva on bass guitar.


Paulo Ferreira on Portuguese guitar at EXIB 2016 - Photo by Angel Romero
Paulo Ferreira on Portuguese guitar at EXIB 2016 – Photo by Angel Romero


Jerónimo Mendes on fado guitar at EXIB 2016 - Photo by Angel Romero
Jerónimo Mendes on fado guitar at EXIB 2016 – Photo by Angel Romero


Jaqueline Carvalho was born in Lisbon in a family of musicians and singers from Madeira and Lisbon. She was a member of “As Miudas Mem Martins”, a group of Portuguese fado artists who performed throughout Portugal and abroad. In 2009 Jaqueline released her first album, titled “Fado”.


Mel Semé at EXIB 2016 - Photo by Angel Romero
Mel Semé at EXIB 2016 – Photo by Angel Romero


Cuban multi-instrumentalist Mel Semé was the third act on stage. He was joined by guest vocalist and guitarist Iraqis del Valle. The concert showcased Mel Semé’s acoustic side featuring Cuban-rooted jazz and pop songs.

Born in Camagüey, Cuba, Mel Semé began his music career playing with the older musicians who performed a type of Latin gospel music. After graduating from Havana University of music and forming part of the Havana Symphony Orchestra and the Camagüey Symphony Orchestra he lived for a while in Switzerland where he taught courses in percussion and performance. He is currently based in Spain and is the leader of the reggae and funk group, Black Gandhi. Mel Semé latest album is “Naturaleza”.


Projeto Alma - Photo courtesy of EXIB 2016
Projeto Alma – Photo courtesy of EXIB 2016


The fourth official showcase act was Portuguese world music band Projeto Alma. The ensemble crosses various musical and geographical boundaries, featuring genres from the Iberian Peninsula such as fado from Portugal and flamenco tango from Spain as well as Afro-Brazilian bossa nova, Latin American boleros, Cape Verdean morna and Argentine tango.

“O Outro lado da Rua” (the other side of the street) is the band’s first album.

Projeto Alma’s members include Teresa Macedo on vocals; Júlio Vilela on guitar; Zeca Neves on bass; Vitor Apolo on accordion; and João Abreu on percussion.


La Corrala at EXIB 2016 - Photo by Angel Romero
La Corrala at EXIB 2016 – Photo by Angel Romero


The last act on stage was La Corrala from Granada, Spain. The group features musicians from various parts of Spain who are based in Granada and come from the reggae and mestizo music scene. Granada has become a really attractive and affordable location for musicians from Spain and abroad (sort of like Asheville in the USA). La Corrala plays flamenco combined with Latin music and reggae beats, jazz, Argentine tango, blues, bossa nova and pop featuring original lyrics by the band’s vocalist. They were one of the highlights of the night.

La Corrala has released an EP with studio and live tracks. Band members include Manuel Jesús Afanador Herrera on vocals; Juan María García Navia on piano, flute and background vocals; Eduardo Tomás del Ciotto on electric bass; Jesús Santiago Rubia on percussion; Juan Peralta Torrecilla on trumpet, flugelhorn and background vocals; and Rubens García Real on guitar.

Related articles:

The Passionate Music of Alentejo, the Focus of EXIB 2016 Opening Concert

Three Continents Represented at EXIB 2016 Day 1 Showcases

Related links:

Lara Bello
Mel Semé
Projeto Alma
La Corrala

Headline photo: Lara Bello, David Minguillón and David Gadea at EXIB 2016 – Photo by Angel Romero