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The Quintessence: 3CD Boxset

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The Quintessence: 3CD Boxset
The Quintessence: 3CD Boxset


'Yma was in a league of her own... with her voice she knew how to create sounds that perhaps no other human being was capable of making." Juan Garcia Esquivel


  • The "Nightingale of the Andes", the voice of birds and earthquakes, the Peruvian soprano Yma Sumac was the most singular and vivacious of recording artists. Her other-worldly vocal gymnastics, a freakish four octave range delivered with sensitivity and power, were without peer in her day and still sound like nothing on Earth. Her natural versatility was such that the Spanish composer Manuel de Falla advised her to sing spontaneously and to avoid formal music teaching at all costs.


  • The Quintessence spans the halcyon days of the 1950s, featuring the six albums which, taken together, have permanently crystallised the myth of Yma Sumac. From the torrid landscape of sensual exoticism that is the Voice of the Xtabay - her genre-defining, best-selling collaboration with Les Baxter - through the hot mambos and languid perfumed psychedelia which underpins her subsequent North American productions, created by her conductor, composer and (then) husband, Moises Vivanco.


  • The triumphs of Voice of the Xtabay were but a prelude to the international successes Yma was to enjoy. In the sixties, a mammoth tour of Russia found her performing to a total of 70 million spectators. The campaign lasted six months and culminated in ten nights at the Tchaikovsky Opera House and meetings with Premier Khrushchev and the composers Shostakovich and Khachaturian.


  • Legend has it that Yma was an authentic Incan princess, a descendant of Atahualpa, the last king of the Incas, who was slain by the Spanish in 1533. “She was definitely an Inca Princess,” said Les Baxter, “but she was South American, plus Inca, you know, mestizo. Unfortunately, that made for a very volatile person, very temperamental, very fiery. One moment she was, ‘I love you, you are marvellous, I kill you!’ All in one paragraph. And she really did say, ‘I kill you’. I thought I was going to die right there and then. But she was a marvellous talent. I think she was really mad at me but I don't know why."


  1. Name
  2. Taita Inty (Virgin Of The Sun God)
  3. Ataypura! (High Andes!)
  4. Accia Taqui (Chant Of The Chosen Maidens)
  5. Tumpa! (Earthquake!)
  6. Choladas (Dance Of The Moon Festival)
  7. Wayra (Dance Of The Winds)
  8. Monos (Monkeys)
  9. Xtabay (Lure Of The Unknown Love)
  10. Xtaby (Lure Of The Unknown Love) (Alternate Take - Boy And Girl Version)
  11. Karibe Taqui
  12. Witallia! (Fire In The Andes)
  13. Lament
  14. Kon Tiki
  15. Montana
  16. Zana
  17. No Es Vida
  18. Kuyaway (Inca Love Song)
  19. Suray Surita
  20. Mamallay!
  21. Panarima
  22. Ccori Canastitay
  23. Birds / Enchantment
  24. Najla's Lament
  25. Najla's Song Of Joy / Arabian For "Get Happy"
  26. Inca Waltz
  27. Babalu (1952 Single)
  28. Bo Mambo
  29. Taki Rari
  30. Gopher
  31. Chicken Talk
  32. Goomba Boomba
  33. Malambo No. 1
  34. Five Bottles Mambo
  35. Indian Carnival
  36. Cha Cha Gitano
  37. Jungla
  38. Carnavalito Boliviano
  39. K'arawi (Planting Song)
  40. Cumbe-Maita (Calls Of The Andes)
  41. Wak'al (Cry)
  42. Incacho (Royal Anthem)
  43. Chuncho (The Forest Creatures)
  44. Llulla Mak'ta (Andean Don Juan)
  45. Malaya! (My Destiny)
  46. Ripui (Farewell)
  47. Jivaro
  48. Sejollo (Whip Dance)
  49. Yawar (Blood Festival)
  50. Shou Condor (Giant Condor)
  51. Sauma (Magic)
  52. Nina (Fire Arrow Dance)
  53. Sansa (Victory Song)
  54. Hampi (Medicine)
  55. Sumac Sorateña (Beautiful Jungle Girl)
  56. Aullay (Lullaby)
  57. Batanga-Hailli (Festival)
  58. Wanka (The Seven Winds)
  59. La Molina (The Mill Song)
  60. La Flor De Canela (Cinnamon Flower)
  61. Gallito Caliente (The Hot Rooster)
  62. La Pampa Y La Puña (The Plains And The Mountains)
  63. Dale Que Dale! (The Workers Song)
  64. Llora Corazon (Crying Heart)
  65. A La Huacachina (Enchanted Lake)
  66. La Perla De Chira (The Pearl)
  67. Mi Palomita (My Pigeon)
  68. Virgenes Del Sol (Virgins Of The Sun)
  69. Gallito Ciego (One-Eyed Rooster)
  70. Clamor (I Won't Forget You)
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