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Jan 19, 2011

Lecture promotes the music of Andy Palacio

Andy Palacio

It’s the third anniversary of his death: but Andy Palacio continues to live in the hearts of Belizeans. At the Image Factory, Anthropologist Dr. Joseph Palacio, spoke of Andy, the perfectionist, whose untimely death came at the time when his music reached the pinnacle of success.  The promotion and preservation of the Garifuna culture took centre stage in Andy’s music, putting Belize on the world stage. Isani Cayetano reports on the second lecture series called Andy Palacio – Globalization and Central Americanization of the Garifuna People.

Dr. Joseph Palacio, Lecturer

“Andy was a perfectionist.  His band members had difficulty keeping up with him as he kept striving for that perfect sound.  His aim was to start with concrete situations on the ground and to move them ever higher to reach the world appeal.”

Isani Cayetano, Reporting

Andy Palacio, a Belizean iconoclast, realized that goal with his magnum opus Watina released in March 2007.  The anthology of songs, written and performed in his native tongue, is widely regarded as the most complete musical effort to come out of Belize in many years.  The album instantly won the hearts of music lovers worldwide but it was Andy’s ability to express his thoughts and feelings through well crafted songs that will resonate with his audience for years to come.

joseph palacio

Dr. Joseph Palacio

“He took his inspiration from his Garifuna culture based in Central America and molded it to reach the highest level of excellence and the world responded giving him the accolades that he truly deserved.”

Beyond the rave reviews however, was a man who did as much to unite Belizeans as he did for the cultural preservation of his people through music.

Dr. Joseph Palacio

“We’ve already seen that Andy’s exposure in southern Belize was greatly influenced by the neighboring parts of Guatemala and Honduras.  We can add that his success in Cancun, Yucatan also helped in pushing him toward taking his rightful place as a global musical icon.”

In addition to the traditional Garifuna music that he heard on a daily basis, Palacio absorbed the diverse sounds disseminated by radio from Jamaica and Cuba.

carlos perrote

Composer Carlos Perrote also interpolated Palacio’s hit Weyu Larigi Weyu as an instrumental arrangement for his album Omolewa Osain.

Dr. Joseph Palacio

“Through the Watina CD Andy projected them unto the world stage giving them a global seal of approval as Garifuna music.  I repeat again that what he did as an artist he knew where he was coming from.  He took his inspiration, he molded it and gave it that stamp and projected it unto the world stage.”

Today marks the third anniversary of the death of Andy Palacio.  On January 17th, 2008, Palacio suddenly fell ill with two apparent “stroke-like seizures.”  He died in Belize on January nineteenth of “a massive and extensive stroke to the brain, a heart attack and respiratory failure.” Reporting for News Five, I am Isani Cayetano.

Just prior to his death, Andy was recognized internationally by UNESCO as an Artist for Peace and had won the prestigious WOMEX Award. His last CD, Watina, topped the European world music charts while at home he was the beloved Cultural Ambassador.

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Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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1 Response for “Lecture promotes the music of Andy Palacio”

  1. sherwin williams says:

    Iam a garifuna and iam proud of what andy p did for not only belize but the garifuna society so once again i andy is gon but never will be forgetten {In GARIFUNA Now seremeyy ne how sherwin williams form seine bight villiage

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