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Balam Ajpu: “Tribute to the 20 Nawales” Live in Concert

  • The Ark 107 Green St. #G55 Brooklyn, NY 11222 (map)

Doors at 7:30pm, Concert at 8pm

Listen to all 20 songs with the player above

Sacred Arts Research Foundation welcomes Mayan hip-hop group Balam Ajpu for the New York City debut of their original work, “Tribute To The 20 Nawales” (Jun Winaq´Rajawal Qíj). This landmark project bridges the knowledge of sacred Mayan calendar with traditional Mayan sounds, modern beats and conscious hip-hop rhymes.

Tzutu Baktun Kan

Tzutu Baktun Kan

Based in the highlands of Guatemaya (the ancient name of Guatemala), the three primary members, or "the three stones" as they call themselves, are Tzutu Baktun Kan (Rene Dionisio), M.C.H.E. (which stands for Memory, Consciousness, History and Evolution, aka Yefry Pacheco), and Dr. Nativo (Juan Martínez). Balam Ajpu (literally the "Jaguar Warriors”) is more than just the three primary members; it is a collective of folkloric musicians, spiritual guides, beat makers, instrumentalists, shamans, healers, M.C.s, singers and producers. All of these talents came together in Guatemaya to give the nawales a forum in which to sing. Read the full Balam Ajpu artist feature.

What are the nawales?

Dr. Nativo Juan Martínez

Dr. Nativo Juan Martínez

For the Mayan people, the nawales are a set of twenty energies that guide humanity through time. Each day the sun rises and a new nawal takes charge. The 20-day cycle repeats 13 times to create a 260 cycle, known as the Chol’qi (Tzolkin), the central wheel in the system of Mayan calendars. Additionally, for each year in the Ha'ab (the 365 day calendar) a new nawal reigns.  The members of Balam Ajpu explain that the nawales are like guardians, angels, and friends. Each of us has a nawal that we were born with, which guides us. Some say that this is our “Mayan sign.” Implicit in each nawal is a sense of duality: it has a human side and an animal side, a masculine and a feminine, a positive and a negative.

This concert features Tzutu Kan and Dr. Nativo and will feature all 20 songs, one for each nawal.

Tickets $15 online/$20 at the door