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Tree of Life

Lila DownsAudio CD
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)

Price: $13.43 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details
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Amazon Price New from Used from
MP3 Music, 13 Songs, 2000 $9.49  
Audio CD, 2000 $13.43  

Listen to Samples and Buy MP3s

Songs from this album are available to purchase as MP3s. Click on "Buy MP3" or view the MP3 Album.

Song Title Time Price
listen  1. Simuna 3:36$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen  2. Nueve Viento 4:46$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen  3. Arenita Azul 2:49$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen  4. La Iguana 3:05$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen  5. Yunu Yucu Ninu 3:28$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen  6. Xquenda 5:04$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen  7. Nueve Hierba 3:36$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen  8. Tres Pedernal 5:15$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen  9. Luna 3:38$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen10. Semilla De Piedra 4:24$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen11. Arbol De La Vida 5:54$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen12. Icnocuicatl 3:15$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen13. Uno Muerte 3:04$1.29  Buy MP3 

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Tree of Life + La Sandunga + Pecados Y Milagros
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (September 12, 2000)
  • Original Release Date: September 12, 2000
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Narada
  • ASIN: B00004X0PS
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #74,999 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Editorial Reviews

Lila Downs's sophomore U.S. release sees her take a much more folkloric tack than her debut, delving into the mystical codices of the Mexican Mixtec natives (her ancestry on her mother's side)--not that the entire album is made up of ancestral songs. There's also "Nueve Viento," a bolero son as rich and satisfying as anything to come out of Buena Vista Social Club. But the heart of this album beats strongest when it's barest, making the stark "Yunu Yucu Ninu" (which she performed differently on her debut) into an eerie delight. Blessed with a remarkable voice, operatic training, and jazz chops, Downs can cover a lot of territory. "Tres Pedernal" recalls the husky Tropicalia of Gal Costa. With its look at native culture and lore, this is a record that delves much deeper than Mexican pop, marking Downs as a serious singer of talent and depth. --Chris Nickson

Product Description

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
56 of 58 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Mixtec Mexican Diva February 22, 2001
Format:Audio CD
Like a mystical Mexican goddess beckoning me I picked this CD up by instinct as I was drawn to it. Was it Frida Kahlo reincarnated or the ancient ones calling? Who knows, I'm just glad I bought it. I was very pleasantly surprised to learn about this marvelous artist, Lila Downs, a Mexican diva with roots and upbringing on both sides of the Rio Grande. Her musical sensibilities come from formal opera training and an education in the US as she was born to a Oaxacan mother and a father from the United States. Lila Downs is unquestionably one of the artists to watch as she matures. This her sophmore effort is a masterpiece, shrouded in mysticism from ancient codices, Lila delivers interpretations that are exquisite manifestations of her being. Her voice trainng has allowed her to sing with unlimited range and depth, a true diva. Her music is contemporary folkloric songs that are performed in various indigenous languages of Mexico that touch a deep cord in one's soul. To listen to her sing in any language is delightful but the when she does in Mixtec it is something very special, ethereal, otherworldly, a communique from her ancestors, poetry from long gone souls for the living to learn from. Don't believe me? Take a listen to the sampler version of "Yunu Yuca Ninu" and listen to Lila speak softly to your soul. She wrote the music for this song about the immigrants who leave Oaxaca every year, some to never return, based on a poem. She performed this song on her first US release also but differently. Listening to this CD borders on a mystical experience, it is undefineable, something that can only be experienced. It is as though it is not neccessary to read the booklet that has all the translations, the music speaks in words that connect straight to your soul. Read more ›
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41 of 43 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars exotic and intense musical experience August 7, 2001
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
I bought this album on the recommendation of Amazon readers. It turned out to be much more than I had hoped. Ms. Downs is willing and able to do more with her voice than I have heard from almost any singer anywhere. Her voice is not operatic but she has a HUGE range, and she uses it to invoke moods to match the songs she sings. The expressiveness of this album is so intense that it is impossible (or perhaps shameful) to use it as background music. In addition to songs in Spanish, Ms. Downs sings a number of songs written in Mixtec, Zapotec and Nahuatl languages. Some of them express their cosmology; others are about living life as a person with troubles. All are beautiful, under the sure and elegant hand of this amazing lady of music.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Jazzier side of Lila November 17, 2004
Format:Audio CD
TREE OF LIFE is quieter all around: Downs' songs present more of her jazzy side, tend towards less passionate riffs and displays, yet are smoothly evocative of her Mexican roots and heritage.

 This isn't to say there's no spirit here: 'Nuevo Viento', for example, adopts a near-flamenco guitar style and exhibits the force of Downs' vocal trills.
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24 of 32 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Back to roots July 12, 2004
Format:Audio CD
To the anonymous music fan from Seattle....shame on you. You have no idea what traditional Mexican music must be one of those people that think burritos & "combinations" are traditional Mexican cuisine and that waltzes performed by misguided sell out mariachi bands are traditional Mexican music. Just as there is infinitely more to Mexican cuisine than is available in the U.S., consciousness about Mexican music is very superficial. Are southern gospel tunes or appalachian jigs any less American than Glenn Miller or Elvis Presley just because they were never discovered by mainstream audiences? While it is true that Lila fuses foreign influences with indigenous doesn't invalidate it...because Mexico's essence is one of mestizaje (fusion...racial, idiomatic, visual, and musical).
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The folksy folks May 7, 2006
Format:Audio CD
This is Lila's most folksy album ever. And also one of her most beautiful, intense and probably long lasting ones. This music will be still as great as it is today, in, say, twenty years from now.

Do not miss this one. The music speaks for itself, not that I can add much more.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Favorite July 25, 2013
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
I have been using this CD for years in the Ancient Mexico class I teach at the university. The lyrics are in Zapotec and Spanish regarding ancient stories with contemporary themes. Students usually want to know more about the CD and Lila Downs.
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