Story by Adrian Cabreja
During these last weeks of summer, there is no time to be wasted.
Soon enough, the full-time routines of school and work will beckon, but in the meantime, there is fun, and even a bit of cultural education, to be found on any given Sunday at the Anne E. Loftus Playground in Fort Tryon Park.
Drums, clarinets, horns and a medley of instruments can be heard from deep within the playground as GaGa P’al Pueblo, an Afro-Dominican cultural arts organization seeking to promote traditional and folkloric Dominican music and dance, comes together to be heard – and to help spread the word about Palos music.
“We feel like our organization is very important here in the Dominican community. Many American-Dominicans are forgetting their basic Afro-Dominican culture and others have forgotten the culture completely,” said Genarao Ozuna, a representative of the organization.
Palos is widely considered by musicologists and lovers of Afro-Caribbean music the true Dominican rural roots music and an important foundational genre.
Read more: Palos: Music at its roots