Marimba traveled from Africa (balafon) to Central America and the Caribbean several centuries ago. This percussive and melodic instrument had time to spread and can be found along the Pacific shore from Mexico to Ecuador, where it became an integral part of local folklore (and even national pride in Guatemala).
Haitian music can be very good setting fire to the dancefloor, but can also be very fresh and sweet to your ears. Here's a beautiful example with a song from Trio Select vol. 2, led by guitarist and popular singer Henry Gesner (1925-1998), very famous under his surname "Coupé Cloué".
Actual growing interest for "tropical" music provides a wide variety of projects and vinyl releases. Muzzicaltrips looked into a afro-venezuelan influenced project (Conjunto Papa Upa, from the Netherlands based label Musicwithsoul), a very good actual DJ friendly sound, loaded with interesting traditional elements. This was opportunity to exchange with the father of this project, Alex Figueira, a real music specialist on the (yet little documented) afro-venezuelan culture.
Flute and tenor sax player Yusef Lateef (1920-2013) just passed away, so here's a post dedicated to this real sound explorer (before being a jazzman), who integrated eastern or african influences in many of his recordings. Famous for his deep, free and spiritual music all along the 60's and 70's in the US, he also directly enriched his open-minded approach spending years in Nigeria in the early 80's.
Following years of success with Franco's TP OK Jazz, singer Lukoki Diatho ran several projects with his colleague Joe Mpoyi Kaninda in the mid 80's (Orchestre Canons du Zaire, Tiers Monde Cooperation). This album "100-1" is one of them, although name of the band is not mentioned.
Ignacio Jacinto Villa Fernandez (1911-1971), received his surname Bola de Nieve (Snowball) by cuban singer Rita Montaner. He's a really atypical singer and pianist in cuban musical scene, active from the 30s, then famous internationally, to the 60s he spent back in Cuba.