The Caribbean is responsible for so much incredible music, it can be difficult to stay on top of it all. Haitian music in particular seems to have been broadly overlooked on a global scale. Our collection Haiti Direct (compiled by Hugo Mendez of Sofrito and out in January 2014) aims to offer an entry point to Haiti’s musical output of the 1960’s and 70’s, covering a variety of musical styles and interesting fusions. “Panno Caye Nan Bois Chêne,” by Les Fantaisistes de Carrefour, offers a glimpse at some of the music included in the collection.
From the album’s liner notes:
Founded by saxophonist Carmin Bichotte in the summer of 1967 in the Carrefour suburb of Port au Prince, Les Fantaisistes celebrated their more egalitarian roots and promoted themselves in opposition to the more uptown milieu of groups like Les Shleu Shleu, scoring numerous hits with lead singer Ricot Mazarin. The spaced-out “Panno Caye Nan Bois Chêne” – with vocals by Haitian singer and poet Ansy Derose – is taken from an album recorded whilst on tour in Guadeloupe in the early 70s and riffs on the local biguine rhythm to haunting effect.