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Che Sudaka: the revolution from within

Dec, 19, 2011 - Sarah Nardone



Che Sudaka unites Argentinian and Colombian musicians performing Latin music with Spanish music influences and lyrics that address problems of immigration, social injustice and war.

Che Sudaka was created in 2002, beginning as illegal immigrants busking in the streets of Barcelona to become a successful band with a 10 year career behind them. The musical and personal development of its members was fed by their experience at the crossroads of South American and European cultures. Leo, the lead singer, tells us about the band’s evolution, and the influences on this melting pot of musicians.

Leo is an Argentinian who, in the nineties, decided to make music his profession. At the time, as is still the case today although changing slowly, the profession of musician was regarded within Argentinian society with skepticism, artists being generally viewed as "lazy hippies". This low valuation of artists was mirrored in the lack of support structures for artists at this time. Guided by his dream, Leo decided to leave Argentina for Europe to find support and resources to develop his talent.

When he arrived in Barcelona, Spain in 2001/2002 as an illegal immigrant, he was soon confronted by the stereotypes associated with this status in European societies. While most European immigrants come for economic reasons, Leo was motivated by his passion for music which would later lead him to the creation of the Che Sudaka band with friends. His particular situation as an illegal immigrant led him to realize that stereotypes against these are a social construction that impedes individuals from expanding their mutual understanding or even to be open to, and take interest in, others. In the case of Che Sudaka, music compensated for this lack of social links, their music serving to connect them with local people while playing on the streets of Barcelona. Thanks to his music, instead of being consumed by anger at this injustice, Leo developed a sort of distance and ironic approach to the functioning  and vision of societies towards immigration which enabled him to develop a deep understanding of societies, both his native and adopted one.

Instead of battling against injustice as a whole and being stuck due to a lack of tools to afront it as an individual, Leo changed his perspective and understood that to effect change, he must find a tool that is accessible to all, and to come back to the origin of injustice – people themselves. This self-realization had a deep impact on his lyrics. While he used to write about current news and events occuring around him, he now writes to encourage people to be the force of change, sharing his self-experience and awareness of individual resources and their potential to heal injustice and stereotypes. According to Leo, it is essential to support people’s freedom of expression in Europe, in South America and all around the world, and to do so, people have to share their ideas and experiences, have access to spaces devoted to that, and help them realize everything is possible. According to Leo’s experience "you just need a strong will to grow to make your dream happen (…) you just have to nourish your good energy and sincerity of soul".

Che Sudaka’s new album titled "10" represents this new step in the evolution of the band: "Unlike our previous albums, this one is more a message of support for people than against the current reality. We think that the true revolution is to win the inner fight, e.g. that people feel good enough to act correctly. Today, in our songs, we say that the most important thing is for people to win their own struggle. The future is the grandchild of the past which is the child of the present. The face of tomorrow is up to us, citizens of the world. We are optimistic, we really believe in people, in particular in their souls, their true beings. We sing for them, with more conviction and strength than ever".

Download (for free!) Che Sudaka’s new album "10" released December 2011 from the band’s website




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