Manu Chao

Genres: World Music
Descriptive "tags": reggae latin alternative world ska french spanish Powered by AudioScrobbler
Decades Active: 1980s 1990s 2000s 2010s
Links online: BBC Music IMDb Official Homepage Wikipedia Wikipedia

Biography

José-Manuel Thomas Arthur Chao, 26 June 1961, Paris, France. A leading figure in the rise of the Latin Alternative movement, Manu Chao was born to Spanish parents (his father Ramón is a noted writer). Bilingual from an early age, he fell in love with the UK punk scene while in his teens and joined local rockabilly outfit, Les Hot Pants. After the demise of this band in the mid-80s, he formed the Clash -inspired Mano Negra with his brother and his cousin. The band’s multi-cultural eclecticism embraced punk, ska, reggae and hip-hop, and they built a strong following in Latin America, although their anarchist principles often led to clashes with the authorities.

In 1995 Manu Chao relocated the band to Spain and created the concurrent Radio Bemba Sound System, a move which hastened the demise of Mano Negra. Manu Chao responded to this setback by embarking on an extended trip around South and Central America, accompanied by his...

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