The great Jonathan Ximenis

Achilifunk Sound System has just released a new album, Super Soul Gitano with Jonatan Ximenis from Arrels de Gràcia as singer.

The great Jonathan Ximenis

Achilifunk Sound System has just released a new album, Super Soul Gitano with Jonatan Ximenis from Arrels de Gràcia as singer. Achilifunk is a word made up of Achilipú (the song Dolores Vargas la Terremoto: “Achilipú, apú, apú”) and funk, the musical genre that emerged in the sixties from the mixture of soul and jazz. The promoter of the project is the graphic designer, musical activist and DJ Txarly Brown, who explores the connections between funk, soul, jazz, disco and Catalan rumba from the point of view of electronics. Lalo López (former Tony Manero Foundation), Sam Monsquetón and Jack Tarradellas play. They are good at titles: Gipsy Soul, Gitano Real, Robot Caló, Disco Jondo, as well as Peteneras and Casioponi, the two albums they have recorded with the beloved Gordo del Puru. One of Gordo's most famous songs says: "Rates, rates, rates, se'm mengen el formatge". I was amused to discover that in 1903 Guglielmo Marconi gave a demonstration of wireless messaging in London, and the first hackers in history sabotaged him with the phrase "rats, rats, rats" in Morse. Not custom made.

As I began to learn the new album by Ximenis and Achilifunk (I like it so much that I learn it) I thought that in another time, a guy like Jonatan, with that big voice and that talent, would be extremely famous. We would have seen him a thousand times on TV as, before him, Peret or Moncho: he is very nice and would put people in his pocket. At what point who decided that it was not necessary to support worthy artists and that the public media had to be a distributor of little minutes, a couple for each one, instead of choosing, supporting and insisting on the good things? With the delivery girl we're not going anywhere.

I was delighted to find on the new album by Ximenis and Achilifunk, an electronic version of "Ni tú nisintiqui" (sic), the song by Manzanita, which was an essential part of the performances by Joaquín Domingo, the gypsy, at the Taverna del Pirate of Llançà. With that letter so black that says: "You swore to me that without my love you would die. / T'he left and you have not died / your word was a lie". Ximenis is a great composer and lyricist and one of the pearls of this album is Excuses , a song so simple and so powerful, that begins with a ringing phone, which leads to the fan, the sampler and the voice: “T'ho I swear to the truth,/ ara t'ho anava a fer,/ estava atrafegat,/ t'ho I send this late”. In recent years, institutions and politicians have taken a liking to singing rumbas to make themselves seem likeable, although later they don't help the singers and they don't give a damn about the rumba. Excuses –which is the song of the perfect self-employed person, always overwhelmed by work, spouting lies by the piece to buy time– would be very suitable for the personal income tax or VAT campaign: “I don't know what to invent, donate for a few days/ ara ho anava a fer/ho faig this late”. It would be ideal.


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