Los Shapis, a legendary group of tropical Peruvian music, will be relaunching their first LP ‘Los auténticos’ (1981). The revival of this album, which was one of the pioneers of Andean Cumbia, will commemorate the 36th anniversary of the band led by Julio Simeón (“Chapulín el Dulce”) and Jaime Moreyra and will include emblematic songs such as ‘El Aguajal’ and ‘Como un errante’.
The relaunching of ‘Los auténticos’ forms part of a project to rescue and revive Discos Horóscopo, a record label founded 40 years ago by Juan Campos Muñoz, and which boasts one of the most important catalogues of chicha music from the 70s and 80s. The label was created and can be recognized as the main driving force of Andean cumbia in Lima, as it took on producing albums of artists that gambled on not only creating a new sound, but also molding a new type of aesthetic, led by Chacalón y La Nueva Crema, Los Shapis, Pintura Roja and Los Ovnis.
Jalo Nuñez del Prado, record label producer, spearheaded the initiative to rescue, restore, and distribute the album on digital platforms (Spotify, iTunes, Google Play, Apple Music, Deezer, among many) from the exquisite catalogue of Discos Horóscopos. The collection “Los 10 discos esenciales de la chicha peruana” counts on being a collection in luxurious format that will feature completely remastered vinyls and CDs from the most important artists essential to understanding the chicha movement. The second album in the collection – which opened with the edition of ‘Chacalón y la Nueva Crema’ – is the debut feature by the band Los Shapis.
Formed in the city of Huancayo on February 14, 1981, Los Shapis – whose name was inspired by a traditional dance, “Los Shapis de Chupaca” – were hailed as ambassadors of chicha when they toured throughout different countries, which gave birth to the internationalization of Peruvian cumbia in the early 1980s.
By 1983, the band was based out of Lima. Its members composed iconic songs about the provincial and profound identity of Peru, in a time marked by racism and classism from the most privileged sectors. A rhythmic tradition that would accompany the two most conflictive phenomena of the era: terrorism and economic debacle, reasons that motivated the massive migration from the countryside to the city.“It is a culture that alludes to disorder and popular excess, drunkenness and chaos, but also a way of appropriating while simultaneously mocking the west,” says researcher Alfredo Villar, collaborator of the project to revalorize Peruvian cumbia.