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Genesis de Colombia biography
GÉNESIS, also known as GÉNE, GÉNE-SIS, GÉNESIS DE COLOMBIA, GROUPO GÉNESIS and briefly as MAÍZ, were one of the earliest Colombian bands to fuse rock with tradition folk instrumentation and progressive, sometimes psychedelic arrangements. The band were formed by Umberto Monroy, former guitarist for THE SPEAKERS, during a period where he was involved with a hippie commune based near a monastery in a village south of Bogota.

The band would go on to release eight studio records before disbanding in 1992 after the Monroy's death.

>> Bio by Bob Moore (aka ClemofNazareth) <<

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GENESIS DE COLOMBIA top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.81 | 7 ratings
3.60 | 5 ratings
3.75 | 4 ratings
Yakta Mama
3.67 | 3 ratings
4.08 | 4 ratings
El Paso de los Andes
4.00 | 3 ratings
En un Planeta Lejano
4.00 | 2 ratings
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 A-Dios by GENESIS DE COLOMBIA album cover Studio Album, 1972
3.81 | 7 ratings

Genesis de Colombia Prog Folk

Review by siLLy puPPy
Collaborator PSIKE, JR/F/Canterbury & Eclectic Teams

4 stars The more you dig into the obscurity bins of bands from other nations it just becomes so clear that many musicians around the globe were on the same wavelength even if they were totally unaware of what was going on elsewhere long before the internet existed. Just take some band names for example. There was a Magma in not only France but Germany and Argentina. There was an Italian Camel before the English one. There was a Spanish Gong about the same time as the more famous one with Daevid Allen and a band called The Focus formed the same year as the more famous Dutch Focus. Well if you thought the famous English Genesis was the only game in town then think again. This GÉNESIS came from the Colombian city of Bogota but to differentiate it's usually called GÉNESIS DE COLOMBIA however in 1983 due to the amazing popularity of the English band, changed its name completely to Maiz. The band name has also been written as GENE-SiS.

Like many European counterparts, this band started out in a hippie commune in the southern enclave of Bogota near the Monastery of the Benedictine Monks in 1972 and became one of the best known of the first generation of Colombian rock that mixed rock with the flavors of traditional Colombia folk music. Generally speaking this band was the equivalent of Chile's Los Jaivas with a strong emphasis on traditional Andean sounds mixed with global rock elements but in the beginning the band was more interested in the catchy cumbia sounds of Colombia's northern Caribbean coast. This project was primarily driven by Humberto Monroy (vocalist, composer, strings, harmonica, zampoña) who was a member of another band called Los Speakers but as the experimental 70s rolled on even remote areas in Latin America were catching wind of the international prog and psych scenes. There are obviously other musicians contributing since there are some horn sounds as well as a violin.

GÉNESIS DE COLOMBIA seems to have released two albums simply titled GÉNESIS, one in 1972 which is also known as "A-dios" and a second eponymous album in 1974 without the accent over the first "e." While info about this band is a bit limited it appears that the lineup for this album included Monroy along with Edgar Restrepo Caro (drums), Federico Taborda "Sibius" (percussion), Tania Moreno (percussion), Armando Narváez (guitar) and possibly Jorge Latorre also on drums. I cannot find out if these musicians appeared uniformly on this album or it was a collective of a rotating cast, nevertheless the album is a consistent mix of catchy folk pop that takes the infectious Caribbean traditional sounds and marries them with rock and pop of other parts of the world, most notably the English speaking nations. This debut consists of both originals and covers with the most recognizable being "La Casa Donde Nace El Sol" which is a Spanish language cover of The Animals' classic hit "House Of The Rising Sun."

While noted as being a prog folk band on later releases, the more complex elements of prog are largely absent on this debut as at this stage the band delivered a Colombian folk infused style of psychedelic pop rock that was popular during the 60s in the US, UK and Europe. Generally speaking every single track on this one is infectiously catchy with strong melodic hooks, excellent instrumental interplay and a larger than life band sound that allows all types of indigenous instruments to fill the cracks between the standard rock instrumentation. While the tunes have strong beefy hooks they aren't always predictable as there are hairpin turns and other surprises. As expected for this time in Latin America, all lyrics are delivered in the Spanish language but for those who speak the language will encounter typical rock subject matter in the typical upbeat Latin American joie de vivre.

This is a pretty catchy album that once you start playing you can't stop. The tracks are all fairly unique and none really mimic the other. Perhaps there are other covers that i'm not aware of but since there are no songwriting credits i can only surmise. Whatever the case this music is beautiful and seamlessly blends the local flavors with the international. Sounding somewhat like Argentina's Sui Generis at its folkiest and like those indigenous pan flute groups as well, it's no wonder why GÉNESIS DE COLOMBIA emerged as one of Colombia's most popular pop rock groups. While prog is mostly absent from this one, i can't help but be mesmerized by the strong pop hooks and the nice optimistic zeitgeist of the era. Pretty cool actually.

 El Paso de los Andes by GENESIS DE COLOMBIA album cover Studio Album, 1981
4.08 | 4 ratings

El Paso de los Andes
Genesis de Colombia Prog Folk

Review by Br4v3r

4 stars in Colombia, the proggresive rock is very unknown and we don't have a lot of bands of this genre, but there's a few famous bands in the underground scene that a lot of people like, Genesis been the most important one. In this album el paso de los andes (the way of the andes), Humberto Monroy create his songs whit a lot of influence of the indigenous people of the centre of the country in the andes mountains, as we can see in all the instrumental and lyrics of the album. The lyrics in more than half of the album talk about love, which is a very common theme in colombian folk, and in the rest of the songs, Humberto sings about the life, the nature, the streets and the people of Colombia and latinamerica, except in el paso de los andes and la guaneña, those are instrumentals, and the most progressive ones. And talking about instrumentals, the thing that i most like about the album is the flute, but the guitar, drums and other instruments are very good too. Fun fact: my music teacher is Cosme Castañeda, the guy who make the flute in this album, and he is also the reason of why i met this band
Thanks to ClemofNazareth for the artist addition.

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