The powerful art and music seen and heard in Brother Towns are the creations of indigenous musicians and artists from Jacaltenango. These artists have created works to tell their community’s history and culture, as well as stories of their migration and change through time. Simply put, their work makes the film, and Brother Towns / Pueblos Hermanos wouldn’t have been possible without their cooperation. The artists were paid for their contributions and have agreed to include their work as part of their ongoing outreach to the broader world.
The following video clip shows three Jacalteco musicians recording some of the music for Brother Towns / Pueblos Hermanos. These musicians are part of various music groups that have performed in various locations in Guatemala and Mexico.
The song is called “Jacaltecita” and is about Jacaltenango being both the cradle of the writer’s birth as well as the place where he will die. It is a wistful but happy song that is both about place and belonging as well as about how it feels to live away from home. The song has a bittersweet meaning for all of those who have had to flee their homeland in search of money and provisions for their families.
The musicians are Juan, Adan, and…
Santos, a singer songwriter, performed three different original songs for the film:
1. “Hace 500 Años” (500 years ago), which tells the sad story of the dove (a symbol of the life of their people) who lived without molestation until the arrival of “someone” 500 years ago who shot and wounded it. The dove continues to fly, but is wounded and the blood continually falls as it flies.
2. “Malin,” a ballad that tells of a farmer who goes out to work in the fields, but who longs to come back home as quickly as possible in order to “talk with Malin, the owner of my heart.”
3. “Pobres Niños,” a song of longing for justice, particularly for the children of Guatemala. If people would just turn their hearts toward caring for them, the song laments, “Guatemala would change in only one day.”
|Photos left to right: Santos Montejo; Santos preparing to record with Efrain Chura; and Efrain at the sound board engineering the music.
|The musicians (left to right) Antonio, Victor and Adan. Singng/Playing the song “Jacaltequita.”
As part of the Brother Towns project, Santos Montejo recorded a CD entitled, “Hombres del Maiz.” The 11-song collection was professionally recorded and engineered by Efrain Chura. Efrain is originally from Bolivia and is also a musician. His backup vocals, drums, flute, guitar, and bass are also featured on the CD.
To order a copy of “Hombres del Maiz,” please go to Contact Us.
Cupertino Delgado Camposeco is a painter and sculptor who lives with his wife and family in Jacaltenango, Guatemala. His works appear in churches, municipal buildings, and he sells his work throughout Guatemala. His 30-painting work entitled “No Más Guerra,” depicting the violence of the 1980s as well as violence in previous eras of indigenous history in Guatemala, appears as part of the Brother Towns film. Don Cupertino has graciously agreed to collaborate with this project and hopes that his works might help educated a broad audience and bring about peace in his country and beyond.