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.
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.
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).
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.