Toy Selectah in Austin, TX, 2009

I was reading another solid post by my man Daniel Hernandez yesterday, over at his always rich Intersections blog, talking about COLOMBIANOS of Northern Mexico.  Months before,  Vice magazine enthralled me with a piece on Cholombianos. Basically, cholos who rock to salsa cumbia and bite Colombian style.

Noticing a discrepancy in his spelling of the term, my inner copy editor screamed out, and I commented to my boy that he had it wrong: It’s “Cholombianos.”

No. He wasn’t wrong. But, yes, we’re both right.

To clear this up, I shot an email to Toy Selectah, pictured up top, who was mentioned in the piece. I interviewed Toy at last year’s SXSW for a piece on Niña Dioz. She was his protegé at the time. Toy, a veteran of the music business for about 15 years, helped create Mexican hip-hop. He’s the oracle for all things Monterrey, hiphop, cumbia and Mexico DJ culture.

Says Toy, via email:

“Colombianos” or “Colombians”, here in Monterrey, is definitely referring to the cholo colombian style. “Cholombianos” is just the combination of words to explains these guys looks. Like a typical Monterrey cholo, his aesthetic is being a Colombian wanna-be!!”

For more Toy Selectah, check out this hour-and-a-half long interview he recently did with Red Bull Academy.

Red Bull MA 2010 -- London

He talks about hip-hop in Mexico and the rise of reggaeton …

“What is interesting to me is that it’s a genre based on a PC and a Fruityloops program.”

He also says “ghetto blaster” during the interview.

Toy Selectah at Club Woda in Mexico City, November 2009

Toy Selectah mixes you can stream now:

Train Wreck mix — London

Toy Selectah Mini-Raverton Mix (

Bersa Discos #5 EP

Top photo by Deanna Dent.


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