Friday, December 5, 2008

La Bomba de Tiempo

"Bomba Hoy?" Reading the flow of text messages every Monday would all entail the same topic, 'bomba de tiempo.' It literally tranlates the the bomb of time. So every Monday evening in the cultural arts center Konex located in the Abasto shopping region of Buenos Aires the bomb of time takes place. Not your typical bomb of time, this one is in the form of percussion drums transcending a high level of energy to an audience in attendance just to de stress.

Bomba de tiempo is a drummer group led by Santiago Vazquez. The group has an improvisational style and creates a very festive, rave-like atmosphere for the crowd. Each week, a new guest accompanies the drummers and throws their own style into that continuously changing style of the group. The guests would range from Ecuadorian vocalists to saxophone players to hip hop vocalists. One of the fourteen members would rotate every half hour and serve as the conductor for the rest of the players. Each conductor had their own style and you never hear the same set twice, it's continuously new!

From the moment you enter, the drums take hold and slowly begin to impart a positive, high energy into your bloodstream. You look around and notice people of all ages and backgrounds feeling that same energy, it becomes contagious as the night goes one. The two hour event really starts rocking the crowd with thirty minutes left and you take a momentary gaze around the audience and notice ten different forms of dancing, which do you choose? La bomba de tiempo has no judgement on which form of dance you take part in; jump, swivel, rock, just find a way to move and let the energy take hold so you are no longer aware what day of the week it is. You notice parents with young children on their shoulders rocking, a young man with his shirt off on someone's shoulder performing spiritual-like movements, young women shaking the salsa hips, and hippies swivelling and swirving. Bomba doesn't care, just move por favor, let your body go. By the time the last drum beat has vibrated the sound waves one last time for the evening, you are now ready for the rest of the week to take place, no more stress, no more worries.

You remember why you would come to this event every Monday you had the opportunity to. Thank you for taking a step into our shoes and those who are true 'bomba heads' in Buenos Aires. This is a reminder that music is there to serve you, let it absorb you transform your energy to that which is feliz. My hope is that when if/when you are in Buenos Aires, your Monday evening is taken up, la bomba de tiempo is yours for the taking. Handle this bomb with care, if not, you'll find yourself as a bomba head and never consider leaving.... which case of the Mondays would you prefer to have?

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