Rita Indiana Pays Tribute to 90’s Music With New Single

Rita Indiana BELatina Latinx
Photo courtesy of the artist.

Rita Indiana has done it again. The Dominican artist and author has surprised her fans with the “90’s Pompero Version” of her single “Toy En La Calle,” a tribute to early 90’s Eurodance music.

Indiana’s new release features the percussion and harmonies of Emmanuel Santana, a rising star of the Puerto Rican plena scene. It is part of her first album in 10 years, “Mandinga Times,” produced by her San Juan neighbor Eduardo Cabra (Calle 13).

“Mandinga Times is an album about the end times,” Rita says. “I like to call it a songbook for the end of the world.”

Her new sound, presented with three new singles, is an exploration of merengue, electro-boogie, and elements of rock and punk, interpreted by “Mandinga,” the latest reincarnation of the alter-ego Indiana has dubbed “La Montra.”

For the singer and author, La Montra is an image “used to demonize everything that has to do with blackness in Latin America.” Rita has reinvented herself as a voodoo-inspired trickster who’s in step with our insurrectionary times. “Mandinga is this wacky demon that likes tropical music, and it comes at the end of the world to be present for what’s going to happen and maybe play another gig before the end of the world,” she adds.

The imagery she surrounds herself with is part of her prolific creativity. Indiana has produced six novels and three volumes of short stories. She began dabbling in music in the late 2000s, learning to build rhythms and teaching herself how to make music. A decade ago, “El Juidero” put her on the map in a big way, establishing not only her unique fusion of traditional Dominican Republic music with rock and electronica but her over-the-top stage show replete with genre-bending pyrotechnics.

Her new material, the artist, said in a press release, is a warning that time is running out, not only for unjust economic systems and racial inequality but for Mother Earth herself.

“It has to do with the hyper-productivity of making things that are garbage and make us garbage,” said Rita.