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'In Peru, I was confronted by ancient instruments that people still play' | Musique Non Stop

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Friday, May 20, 2016

'In Peru, I was confronted by ancient instruments that people still play'

It’s not often you get to knock out a tune on a dead donkey’s jaw. Music producer Mala, of dubstep crew DMZ, skips the pan pipes to discover Peru’s musical roots

For me what’s inspiring is finding and capturing the essence of the old and seeing how I can marry it with what’s happening now. In Peru, I was constantly confronted by ancient instruments that people still play. I can’t think of anything more fascinating than what a dead donkey’s jaw sounds like when you put it on a sound system.

There’s an instrument called a cajita, which originated as a church donation box. Players open and close the lid, and hit it, to create an intricate rhythm. A quijada is that donkey jaw – if you bash the base of it with your fist, it creates this shot sound, but you get the rattle of the teeth, too. And a cajón was a cargo shipping box, because a lot of the slaves worked at the docks, and made instruments from what they could find.

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by Interview by Will Coldwell via Electronic music | The Guardian