Acatife In Concert

Special Guests Magek
Teguise, Lanzarote, July 2023

There are usually around thirty artists on stage when ever Acatife perform and my wife, Dee, counted 32 singing and playing members in the folk lore group Acetife, when we recently saw them play Teguise, as a further part of the Nuestra Senora Del Carmen celebrations on which we have reported over the past two or three weeks.

This was the third or fourth live gig we have seen by a band that is a much cherished treasures on the Lanzarote folk scene. Acatife is more than a band, however, and the clue as to why lies in their posher, proper name: The Acatife Cultural Association was founded in 1983 in Villa de Teguise, Lanzarote, and is an organisationentity dedicated to Canarian popular music.

Since its inception, Acatife has had as its main mission the investigation, recovery and dissemination of the island’s folklore, contributing to its enrichment with its own contributions. This work has materialized in the realization of more than five hundred performances throughout the Canary Islands, in other cities of the Spanish State, as well as in Germany and France.
This should sound familiar to our English readers who have learned about English Folk Expo (EFE) in our poages over the past cou’ple of years. The remit for that organisation is very similar to that described above, and it is good to learn the model is transferable and successful.

The playing arm of The Acatife Cultural Association (ACA), Acetife, is a model EFE have not yet replicated and it serves as a wonderful example of the4 heights can be achieved with talent, self-dedication and a supporting infrastructure.

Acatife has recorded eight albums, (three of which we have on our play-lists in the office) which are testimony to this commitment to Canarian popular music and its evolution over the years. The association has had a presence on both national and international television programs, bringing Canarian music and culture to audiences around the world.

Acatife’s work is based on three fundamental pillars: the rescue of songs still present in the collective memory of the Canary Islands, the musicalization of lyrics by coplistas and popular poets, and the composition of their own songs. Emigration, a phenomenon that has deeply marked Lanzarote, is a recurring theme in his repertoire.

Acatife’s latest achievement is the recording and presentation of their eighth album  Mi Pueblo y César  This album, recorded live at the Jameos del Agua in November 2022 , is a journey through the geography, customs, traditions, legends, oral tradition, ways of being, behaviours and events of Lanzarote. The album was presented for the first time at the Víctor Fernández Gopar Theater “El Salinero” in Arrecife on June 9, 2023 , an event that included the participation of invited artists such as Isabel Cabrera and Almudena Hernández.

Now, the fiesta jubilations of 2023 scheduled to another concert to be delivered in Teguise, to follow the classic cars and Mariarchi music and the musical El Relejero de Los Suenos the very special musical written and performed for young children that we have previously reported.

To see that musical, we had followed an incredible calculated to the second of watching England win a test match during the day, arriving in time for the 5.30 performance, taking a sunset drive past the beach at Famarfa and arriving back in our home town of Playa Blanca to rely on the rapid service and great food at Lani´s Snack Bar for a quick supper and back in our house at 9.59 in time for the ten o´clock Wimbledon highlights.

Tonight´s start time of 9.00 pm allowed us three hours to take a leisurely (red velvet steering wheel) drive and stroll down to the wonderful side-street restaurant, with tables on the cobbled road at the fron and a secluded courtyarfd at the side. Only three of the the tables on the road were occupied at this time so we took one that was free, under the shade of a huge parasol and enjoyed one of the most surprising we´d ever had.

The special guests for tonight´s event were Tenerife folk-lore group Magec.

Magec represents the renewing force that popular Canarian culture acquires and since its inception it has not stopped promoting cultural activities. The group, led by Juan Pablo Pérez López from Orotava, currently has around thirty members. Magec’s musical offer is very varied, since it performs music from the Canary Islands (isa, folía, malagueña, etc.), South American (Mexico, Argentina, Cuba, Puerto Rico, etc.) and Spanish (songs by Nino Bravo, Mocedades, José Luis Perales, etc.)