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LADAMA: Tiny Desk Concert

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During the course of their performance behind the desk, the four core members of LADAMA — Lara Klaus, Daniela Serna, Mafer Bandola and Sara Lucas — had a chance to display their individual cultural and musical roots as part of an engaging and mesmerizing whole. Represented in glorious musical virtuosity are Brazil, Colombia and Venezuela, with a dash of New York City thrown in just to make it interesting.

The video starts, for example, zeroed-in on the Venezuelan bandola llanera(or an updated version of it) while another song starts with the Brazilian pandeiro.Those instruments are put to work on rhythms from each of those countries, as well as Colombia, in songs that always percolate, even at slower tempos.

The four women in LADAMA met at a music workshop. Each are also music educators and dedicated to both celebrating and expanding the idea of cultural expression, with the help of bassist Pat Swoboda.

It's the fiery "Inmigrante" that finally raised the BPM meter and got hips swaying in our corner of NPR's HQ, with its call-and-response back-and-forth and a very enthusiastic audience. The band left us after the performance to travel to Brazil and record their next album. Judging from their musical spirit on display here, it can only mean great things to come.


  • "Sin Ataduras"
  • "Elo"
  • "Tierra Tiembla"
  • "Inmigrante"

    Sara Lucas: vocals, guitar, raspa; Lara Klaus: vocals, drums, pandeiro; Daniela Serna: vocals, congas, tambor alegre; Mafer Bandola: vocals, bandola llanera; Pat Swoboda: bass


    Producers: Felix Contreras, Morgan Noelle Smith; Creative Director: Bob Boilen; Audio Engineer: Josh Rogosin; Videographers: Morgan Noelle Smith, Kimani Oletu, Bronson Arcuri, Beck Harlan; Associate Producer: Bobby Carter; Photo: Amr Alfiky/NPR

    Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

    Felix Contreras is co-creator and host of Alt.Latino, NPR's pioneering radio show and podcast celebrating Latin music and culture since 2010.