After playing together for 27 years, Los Hermanos de los Andes confess they don’t need music or much practice to perform together. They came to Mormon Channel Studio to share a medley of “Silent Night” and “Away in a Manger,” along with a Spanish tune called “Mama Criso.”
The group met in while studying engineering at Brigham Young University. Since then, they have become popular for their use of instruments that are unique to their home countries of Bolivia and Chile.
The wind instruments they play belong to a family of flutes that were used in the Inca civilization. Bamboo reeds are cut to precise lengths in order to achieve specific notes. The larger the flute, the lower note.
Goat skin and wood were used to create the drum, which gives each song body. Of the two string instruments they play, the smaller is called a charango. In years past, armadillo backs were used to create the charango. Today, they are usually made of wood and bring a lighthearted sound to a tune. L
os Hermanos chose to play “Mama Criso” to honor Mary, the mother of Jesus Christ. “It reflects the softness, the power, the strength that a woman has,” one member explains.
Mormon Channel Studio is a weekly video series featuring hymn arrangements and original music by LDS musicians from across the nation.