How did the band start? Brief History
Well, it started like most, with broken 10 Watt amps and third hand guitars, without the means to buy a mike for more than 6 EUROS and unaware that musical instruments NEED TUNING BEFORE playing...
This was in the early 90s, and the 14 members were scattered amongst a dozen bands.
During this time most of us learned how to play chords, change strings and tune... Indispensable skills to start a band... Although some of us didn’t learn them until after playing in a few concerts (with regrettable video recordings as proof of our first steps). And in mid 1996, with the break up of some of these bands and with some initiated and failed attempts to create “a new band”, the seed of Radio Raheem was born.
We were hooked. Within 3 months we developed a craving for playing concerts, and with hardly any rehearsals we got mixed up in playing in every single squat in Barcelona during that year.
In 2001 Marta, the band’s keyboard player, started with us. We then recorded our second album, which we played on tour regularly, and a third "Radio Raheem" album was released a year later.
Where have we played?
Considering we are a band that at the beginning didn’t have any major media coverage, we have undoubtedly played a lot...
In 1999 we performed 56 gigs (JODETE TOUR 99), in 2000 it was 53, in our tour to showcase our first album “Guaguanco Barna Party”, and in 2001 we did a 30 gig tour which we alternated with the recording of the second album of the band...
After 2002 (Patxoca Tour 02), we lost count when it all added up to more than 60 shows across the whole peninsular geography. We would highlight the following as significant:
Mariporrón Festival, Tormantos (La Rioja), Mallorca, Madrid (Vallekas, and not long ago Alcobendas), Gasteiz Festival, Donosti, Burgos, València, Rebumbio Festival (Galicia), Boeu(Galicia) and Fisterra (Galicia). We have appeared as well in several street parties in Barcelona, of which we would like to particularly mention three gigs in Gràcia Festival (‘pça Rius i Taulet, Diamant and Llibertat’), several times in ‘la Barceloneta’ for ‘Sant Joan’ huge fireworks party, three gigs in Sants Festival (two in the alternative festival and a third one with ‘Amparanoia’ in ‘Estació de Sants’), Horta Festival and other festivals in Poblesec, Poblenou, el Guinardó, Nou Barris…
Other festivals in Barcelona include ‘La Mercè 03’ in ‘plaça Catalunya’ and ‘la Mercè 04’ in ‘plaça Reial’. We also played in halls such as ‘la Paloma’ as a supporting band for ‘Radio Wemba’, in ‘sala Apolo’ for the presentation of our second album and recently in one of ‘Caníbal Soundsystem’ sessions. We have been in many town festivals in the rest of Catalonia as well; three times in Caldes d'Estrac in "Ja't val", in Lleida, Tarragona, La Núcia, Roses, Sant Celoni, Argentona, Arenys de munt, Roses, Sant Cugat, Bellaterra, Piera,...
What we have recorded?
In 1999 we recorded Radio Raheem’s first album "GUAGUANCO BARNA PARTY" edited and distributed by ‘Bip Bip Records’.
This album includes a couple of remixes produced by our friend Kiefer. It was recorded in four days, with a very limited budget and at the time when we were introducing the wind instruments. Playing the drums we had ‘el Mago’ (the magician), who didn’t show up at the studio, a great man nonetheless. The result… an album with great tracks but of limited recording quality. But despite all the drawbacks, we’re very proud of our beginnings.
In 2001, as if in an odyssey, we recorded our second LP entitled
“LA CASA DEL PUTXINELI” with 16 tracks, interrelated with stories of rheumatoids and "carapancetas". What could be said about this record? Well, apart from the fantastic cathedral effect which adds a ceremonial air to the sound, we have to say that it contains a great imaginative display, not to mention the spectacular sleeve with a small pop up circus, which looks great; and I’m not just saying that because I’m part of the band myself.
Presently (and after a year recording) we have finished our third studio album “RADIO RAHEEM”, with 14 new songs and new band members, which we’re really looking forward to bringing to the stage.
And very soon we hope to get back on the road, this time promoting our new album.
What do we play?
This is actually more difficult to explain. We don’t want to be labelled as being a band who plays only one kind of music...”anything” be it ska, ragga, rap, rock, hardcore, metal or any such like. I can enjoy 100 % ska, hip hop without instruments, salsa, rock, hardcore or trash, but deciding what my band should play is a completely different matter, considering I listen to them all and enjoy them equally. So, why not try and play a mixture of styles incorporating music that all members of the band enjoy? Obviously, the purists of each style are going to be pulling their hair out if I tell them that We’re playing Ska. They’ll crucify me. “How can you say that you’re playing Ska if you’re singing rap on top, or if you’re applying some distortion... Or a bit of rap metal?” If we say that we play rap, they will say “this is wrong, you should have a DJ in rap, not instruments!” So, as we don’t want to argue with anybody, and since everybody can do whatever they please... When the moment arrived and we were asked: So... what do you play? We simply answered... “CHANCHA”...
What is “CHANCHA”? Well, in my neighbourhood, when you’ve been lucky at something, for example when the kids play football and one of them scores that impossible goal... we say he’s got “CHANCHA”. There is no other meaning to it, just a lucky person. It’s a “street jargon” word which doesn’t mean anything in particular, and we also think it sounds good, so... What does Radio Raheem play? “CHANCHA”. You don’t upset anybody, nor make up intricate words such as ‘ska-reagge-punk-rap-hardcore-ranxera- -musicaetnicapolonesa-metal’ or anything like that, which is like saying that you’re a genius in all these styles of music and that in the album you’ll find at least one track of each of them. The reality is a bit different… If you mix them all up, the most logical thing to do is not doing any of them at all, or doing something else... Or not? Or maybe? Or God knows...
Our live album is as furiously-paced and danceable as usual.
La Casa del Putxineli
Guaguanco Barna Party
Lupara Records - Album
buy it at iTunes
Lupara Records - Album
buy it at iTunes
04.08.2010: Hasta Siempre Radio Raheem! (Castellano)
The Forum for Radio Raheem
Contact & Management
655240148 / 93 5836204