John Beni Y Sus Ribereños

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Born in Huarochiri, likely around 1945, Juan Benigno Tapia Rojas moved to La Victoria, Lima where he learned to play guitar from his father. He formed his first group with neighborhood friends and called themselves “The Peruvian Boys.” The group covered Colombian cumbias and Cuban guarachas. Due to the growing popularity, in 1966 “The Peruvian Boys” were invited to play in Guayaquil, Ecuador. There they got some radio play on Ecuadorian local radio, Radio Cristal as well as musical halls, under the name “Peru Y Mi Son.” In Ecuador they started to debut some of their own compositions.

Back in Peru, due to the success of the tour in Ecuador, the band felt ready to submit their original compositions to the major labels at the time: Virrey, Odeon, MAG, SonoRadio. Virrey was interested in signing the group, and encouraged the renaming of the group to “Los Ribereños” (The Riversides).

For some reason however, rather than releasing pressings on Virrey, they released two 45 RPS by Los Riberneos on Polydor, presumably a licensor of Virrey, around 1967/1968.

 

Silbando/Don Jose

 

 

La Sapa/Hasta Cuando

 

Presumably the band that played on these first two discs was the same that would play on the debut LP. Personnel being:

Juan Benigno Tapia (director and vocals)

Luis Sánchez Donayre (timbales)

Hugo Richarti (lead guitar),

Miguel Palomino (bass),

Ricardo Caceres (Huiro/tumba)

Víctor Manuel Saldaña (tumba/quinto),

The group went on to release three LPs for Virrey, the first the great “Silbando” (DVS 659). The title track of course having been compiled on the Roots of Chicha, as well as receiving remix treatment on a 7″ in 2010. The B side of this disc is great all the way through, the Bolero’s on the A side kind of ruin that side for me.

The second release is a split disc (DVS-696) with Compay Quinto songs interspersed wiht  Los Riberenos (2/5 songs on side A, and 4/6 on side B). I’ve not heard this, I found this image on popsike.

Latin LP Rare Descarga Cumbia Virrey Los Ribereños Compay Quinto Sensacional

The last LP was Sola En El Mar (DVS-713). A few tracks from this are up on youtube.

Thereafter, John Beni would form his own record label called “Benisa”, and release one of his own tracks as well as another group of his friends titled  “Los Roberts de Tumbes” (I’m not able to confirm this).

 

Balu/Un Trago En Mananita

 

The group appears to have reactivated, with only Juan an original member, and he now calls himself “Jhon” perhaps to single himself out. Nonetheless, the music videos up on youtube are priceless, and you can check his new group’s sound out here:

 

Special thanks to Norberto Lajo Paredes, over at BetoLajo for some (the only) information out there on the Internet.

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Pedro Miguel Y Sus Maracaibos

L-R: Pedro Emilio Tardio (Timbales), Manuel Garcia (Guitar/vocals), Pedro “El Chacal” Vicente Grados (Guitar), Pedro Miguel Huamanchumo Caramutti (Lead Vocal/guiro), Pedro Vicente Gomez (Trumpte), Felipe Arrieta (Congas)

Much has been written about Enrique Delgado, but before Odeon released Los Destellos eponymous debut (Odeon/IEMPSA ELD-1735), Pedro Miguel Y Sus Maracaibos had dropped ‘La Paila’ (roughly translated this would invoke something fire sauteed, which indeed the tunes are!)  on Odeon’s Lider imprint (LD-1668). This fusion of guitar driven tropical rhythms would soon be propelled to the forefront of Peruvian popular music, of course bolstered by the sinewy licks of Mr. Delgado and company. Point being, Pedro Miguel is an underappreciated root in the great guitar driven cumbia scene that would spring forth in the coming decade and fuel artists for labels that had yet to be formed even.

Born June 30, 1942 in Salaverry, Trujillo (the second largest city in Peru). Pedro left for Lima at age 15 in 1957. In 1961, at 19, he formed his band ‘Pedro Miguel y sus Maracaibos” (Maracaibo is a city in Venezuela–there has to be a story here, but I haven’t unearthed it yet). The band was formed in the Barrios Altos neighborhood of Lima (incidentally the location would become infamous 30 years later in view of the Sendero Luminoso linked massacre in that neighborhood). In 1966 the group recorded its first LP “La Paila.” Apparently the recording for Odeon/Lider/IEMPSA was made possible because his older (half?) brother Raul Huamanchuo Reyes (perhaps better known to Peruvians as the comedian “Chalo” Reyes, who passed in 2016) had a word put in to the label through Pedrito Otiniano & Lucho Barrios, who Raul played guitar for.

Trujillo, Peru (8.5 hrs drive north of Lima (555.2 km)

The group’s first international tour is rumored to have been to Chile in 1970. Gaining international notoriety, around 1972 the group toured to the United States, to the Cuban-centric neighborhoods of Miami. It was this same year that they recorded Con Sabor A Cuba (Odeon/IEMPSA ELD-1871).

Image result for pedro miguel sabor cuba

While I do enjoy Los Maracaibos early material, as with most groups (any genre/any time) later material for whatever loses the magic of earlier releases. I’d check out any of the below for a sip of the juice.

Select Discography:

LD-1668 – La Paila

LD- 1734 – Pa’los Rumberos

ELD – 1788 – Los Campeones Del Ritmo

ELD – 1871  – Con Sabor A Cuba (starting on this release you’ll find some ‘potpourris’ which for the record I hate…)

ELD – 1979 – Ritmo Maracaibo

ELD – 2043 – A Todo Dar!

ELD – 2115 – Al Toque

ELD – 2220 – A Toda Maquina..!

ELD 31.15.303 – Lo Fuerte De (greatest hits compliation)