Upcoming Summer Album, Double-Disc “El Negrito Dun Dun & Ricardo,” Coming Later This Summer
“The illusion of effortlessness is part of what makes them so cool, and they generate inspiring mega-wattage the way most people barely wake up. There was no need for the comic aggression, transparently defensive displays of wealth, or an authenticity that sounds a lot like sociopathy. They perform from a meaningful place and make it look good. Los Rakas is skill, just skill on a pocket of sunshine.” – Pop Matters
WEDNESDAY, APRIL 24th, 2013: Coming out strong in advance of their two-disc summer album “El Negrito Dun Dun & Ricardo,” the first video off Raka Dun’s (“El Negrito Dun Dun”) side of the project, “No Tan Listo” drops on the eve of a nationwide tour with internationally renowned reggae group SOJA (dates here). The album will be released on Los Rakas’ label, Soy Raka.
“Standing strong like a lion,” Raka Dun (pronounced “Doon”) calls out to a world that “ain’t ready” for the duo’s fresh take on hip-hop, dancehall, pop and experimental music in both English and Spanish. The video features Los Rakas in their native Oakland, California with Raka Dun – alongside Raka Rich and the Raka family – giving us raw Raka lyricism, ushering a new era of American rap and introducing the #SoyRaka movement worldwide!
Los Rakas have been busy since their homegrown label Soy Raka released “Chancletas y Camisetas Bordada” hitting #1 on iTunes Reggaeton/Latin Hip-Hop chart in 2011. The Los Rakas logo – Raka Smiley – is now on a special-edition Puma sneaker available at West Coast chain “Shoe Palace.” The brand collaborated with Modelo Especial and Complex Magazine for a fan-driven contest called the “Blank Canvas Project.” Up & coming artists (including Joel Ortiz) designed special edition Puma’s and fans voted on their favorite designs, with Los Rakas winning the competition due to overwhelming fan support.
Besides being the first independent group to have their group logo on a major brand sneaker, the group has continued to put out a healthy dose of singles & videos to their rapidly growing network of international fans – called the “Raka Nation” – while building notoriety for their wildly energetic live shows. Making their Mexico debut in 2011 at Festival NRML and consequently at 2012’s Corona Capital Festival in Mexico City, Los Rakas have been expanding their movement to South America. The group has also played on national tours like Collie Buddz’s “Dark & Stormy Tour” in Fall 2012, while debut headlining in cities like Miami, Austin, DC, Boston and continuing to sell-out shows in Los Angeles and their native Bay Area.
The group’s most recent video, the “sexy and blunted” (Village Voice) “Bien Ribetiao,” garnered homepage placement on VEVO in Summer 2012. The song was off Raka Rich’s mixtape “El Flow Californiano: Mixtape Vol. 1.” Rich told AOL Spinner: “The style has never been done in Spanish, so we wanted to do it really well and visually have it rep all our styles being born in Panama and raised in The Bay.” A few months later, SPIN Magazine premiered the “evocative and immediate” collaboration with Caribbean clothing line RepJA – “Hablemos Del Amor” – a call to peace and ode to the young lives lost too soon like Oscar Grant, Trayvon Martin, Panamanian artist El Kid and others. Los Rakas cam be seen making a cameo in just released video “Can’t Hold Us” by Macklemore and Ryan Lewis, shot on a pirate ship in the Bay Area – the video premiered on MTV last week.
Los Rakas music has been featured recently in two episodes of FX’s ‘Sons of Anarchy‘ and HBO Latino’s ‘Sr. Ávila, 1ª Temporada.’
With “El Negrito Dun Dun & Ricardo,” the group presents a cohesive album in two discs exploring the sounds and textures of their bi-cultural twist on the globally urban Raka-sound. During a recent interview with MTV Iggy, when asked about the album’s was two discs, Raka Dun explained, “It was organic, we didn’t really plan it like that. We were each working on releasing solo projects. So we sat down and were like, ‘Let’s just release them at the same time.’‘”
On what to expect from the release, Raka Rich continued, “Dun’s side of the album is like a documentary. It’s a little more personal. The sound of the album is like dancehall reggae with hip-hop, experimental, with a little bit of jazz and soul. My side is called ‘Ricardo’ – it’s more about partying and nightlife. The sound of the CD is like Michael Jackson, ‘90s, uptempo music, feel-good stuff.”
To kick off the release of brand new music, Los Rakas will tour with SOJA across the US beginning in San Diego on Wednesday, April, 24th, traveling up through California to the Pacific Northwest. The tour continues midwest towards Chicago, with a pit-stops in Miami for the Latin Billboards and Austin for the Pachanga Latino Music Festival alongside Latin American greats like Intocable and the young electronic group out of Mexico, 3BallMTY – then back up to New York to play Webster Hall and ending in Boston on May 19th. This summer, the group will return to the Latin Alternative Music Conference (LAMC) where they won the “Discovery Artist” prize in 2010 – taking the stage at NYC’s most famous outdoor stage, Summerstage – alongside Tego Calderon.
TOUR DATES: www.losrakas.com/events
San Diego, Ca – Wed, April 24th – House of Blues – http://bit.ly/15nn688
Los Angeles, Ca – Fri, April 26th – Club Nokia – http://bit.ly/XlKBw2
San Francisco, Ca – Sat, April 27th – Warfield Theatre – http://bit.ly/17yL8cX
Eugene, OR – Sun, April 28th – McDonald Theater – http://bit.ly/10oF897
Seattle, WA – Tues, April 30th – Showbox SODO – http://bit.ly/ZahI4K
Boise, ID – Wed, May 1st – Knitting Factory Concert House – http://tktwb.tw/15pE0Tn
Salt Lake City, UT – Thurs, May 2nd – The Depot – http://bit.ly/10oFsoo
Fort Collins, CO – Fri, May 3rd – Hodi’s Halfnote – http://bit.ly/Z7Csem
Denver, CO – Sat, May 4th – Ogden Theatre – http://bit.ly/ZairD3
Omaha, NE – Tues, May 7th -The Waiting Room Lounge – http://bit.ly/13n85z8
Minneapolis, MN – Wed, May 8th – First Avenue – http://bit.ly/179lA7Q
Madison, WI – Thurs, May 9th – Capitol Theater – http://bit.ly/XdjBLZ
Chicago, IL – Fri, May 10th – House of Blues Chicago – http://bit.ly/ZEX0FF
Austin, TX – Sat, May 11th – Pachanga Latino Music Festival – http://bit.ly/ZjZF9c
New York, NY – Fri, May 17th – Webster Hall – http://bit.ly/YAL9Jo
Philadelphia, PA – Sat, May 18th – Electric Factory – http://bit.ly/ZyGhrz
Boston, MA – Sun, May 19th – House of Blues – http://bit.ly/WNMFcd
Petaluma, CA – Fri, May 31st – Mystic Theatre – http://ticketf.ly/105bjDj
To book Los Rakas: Thomas@IneffableMusic.com
ABOUT LOS RAKAS:
Los Rakas is comprised of cousins Raka Rich & Raka Dun, pioneering Panamanians by way of the Bay Area on the frontier of a new Latin urban sound. Known for their fresh mix of Hip-Hop, Plena, Reggae and Dancehall music with both Spanish and English lyricism, Los Rakas represent the cutting edge of Pan-American flows. Taking their name from the Panamanian word “Rakataka” – a negative slur used to describe someone from the ghetto – Los Rakas have set out to both inspire fellow “Rakas” by empowering them, and to become successful despite their circumstances, turning the current Latin hip-hop world on its head. Los Rakas make music born of migration and tradition, critique and celebration, joy and pain. They make New World music. American music. Panamanian Jamaican Californian music. Music for b-boys and rude girls, dancers and romancers, mainlanders and islanders and isthmus folk alike, which continues to bubble one “Raka” at a time.