Lysa Flores just played a great show for the Huizache launch party (thanks again Lysa!). In this internet age, there’s no reason why all of you who missed the party need to miss out on Lysa’s music. You can listen to a lot of her tracks at her own website, and YouTube has a cool video of her covering the Joy Division classic Love Will Tear Us Apart. The audio’s not perfect, but the video gives you an idea how great a performer Lysa is, and if you watch closely, you can see Alfredo Ortiz, who also played the launch party, on drums.
This may be old news for some, but I just found came across it so it’s new news to me! There’s a great podcast called “The Latin Alternative” coming out of Albany, New York and there’s an entire episode from early 2014 devoted to the great Angeleno band Los Lobos, starring Louis Perez, the band’s singer and guitarist. Perez and the host get through the obligatory mention of La Bamba right away, and then go through the forty year (!) history of the band, tell some stories and play some tracks from old and newer albums. The interview is great, the music is great, and Louis Perez even says something great that reminded me of the whole project of Huizache:
There’s this whole thing that’s happening that there’s like a new generation of Latin […or…] Chicano artists that are moving way beyond where one would expect…Chicano music to go, while still maintaining a lot of their integrity and sensibilities to the community and their culture, which is a lot like what we’ve done. And it’s just great to see young people just carrying that torch on forward, and there’s a lot of amazing groups out there.
As in music, so in literature! Here’s the whole interview:
The hosts of the podcast note the curious place of American-born music within the Latin Alternative genre (ie, it is mostly ignored), so it’s great to see Los Lobos getting their propers on the show. All the episodes of the podcast, with tons of excellent music chosen by hosts Josh Norek and Ernesto Lechner, can be found here, and the show’s homepage is here.
And now, a Tiny Desk Concert with David Garza . . .
Felix Contreras notes that “[b]eing a fan of [Davíd] Garza means accepting the world on his terms — and his world is filled with infinite musical possibilities. He’s got a tremendous collection of musical friends who call on him for his work as a backup musician in studio sessions and on stage. For example, he and vocalist Gaby Moreno (already a Tiny Desk veteran) have been touring together lately, and you get a taste of her powerful voice as she joins Garza here.”
The set list includes the songs Texas Is My Hometown, Discoball World, and Malagueña Salerosa.
And did we mention that Garza was a contributor to HUIZACHE’s debut issue?
Here at HUIZCAHE’s La Capirotada, we’ll occasionally feature a favorite musician or group who embodies in music the spirit of what we’re doing on the page. Today, we turn the spotlight on East LA’s Las Cafeteras.
From their website: “Las Cafeteras create a vibrant musical fusion with a unique East LA sound and a community-focused political message. Their Afro-Mexican rhythms, zapateado & inspiring lyrics tell stories of a community who is looking for love & fights for justice in the concrete jungle of Los Angeles. A remix of traditional Son Jarocho sounds, LAS CAFETERAS add Afro-Caribbean marimbol and cajón, poetry in English and Spanglish, and instruments like jarana, requinto, a donkey jawbone and a wooden platform called the Tarima.”
Named “Best Latin Alternative Band -2013” by LA Weekly, heralded as a “local band we love” by KCRW, and featured by the LA Times, NPR, Los Angeles Magazine, and the BBC, Las Cafeteras are currently touring the West Coast, with shows scheduled for San Francisco, Watsonville, Oakland, Sacramento, Eugene, Mt. Vernon, Vancouver, and Seattle.
Here at HUIZCAHE’s La Capirotada, we’ll occasionally feature a favorite musician or group who embodies in music the spirit of what we’re doing on the page. First up: 2012-13 Austin Music Award Winner Gina Chavez.
From her website: “As one of Austin’s most beloved world music/indie artists, Chavez is known for her impressive multi-instrumental performances and an inimitable sound inspired by cumbia, bossa nova, vintage pop, reggaeton and other genres. With accolades such as the 2012-13 Austin Music Award for Best Latin Traditional Artist/Band (along with placing in three other categories), two tours in Japan as the Official City of Austin Music Ambassador, and praise from National Public Radio‘s All Songs Considered and Alt. Latino as one of eight ‘New Latin Artists at SXSW,’ Chavez has claimed a prominent stake in the Live Music Capital.”
Chavez’s second album, Up.Rooted, was funded by a highly successful Kickstarter project and was released earlier this year. The album seeks “to express the dichotomies of her life as an ethnically mixed American woman trying to define, and embrace, who she is and where she belongs.” You can stream the new album, including the studio version of “Gotta Get” (featuring another HUIZACHE favorite, Grupo Fantasma), here.
We’re big fans of Gina Chavez here at HUIZACHE, but don’t just take our word for it:
- Review from the Austin Chronicle: “Enlisting veteran local studio genius Michael Ramos (Patty Griffin; his Charanga Cakewalk) results in a flawlessly bilingual balance between South American, Mexican, and American influences. Each track bristles with authenticity: Folk idols Eliza Gilkyson and Nathan Hamilton lend harmonies on sweeping Latin ballad “Todo Cambia,” the Grupo Fantasma horns electrify “Gotta Get,” and Ramos’ electrifying accordion vies for LP MVP. “Soy Quien Soy” declares her love of South America, and it defines up.rooted: Chavez asked hard questions, put in the miles, and emerged brimming with dynamic self-assurance.” (Four stars.)
- Review from NPR: “Chavez’s voice reflects the one-of-a-kind meshing of cultures and influences that Austin represents: Whether she sings in English or Spanish, Chavez captures a healthy dose of American soul, country and rock music, and she could hold her own with any Mexican ranchera singer, past or present.”
- Review from PopMatters: “The result is genre stew that is a perfect representation of what ‘Americana’ really means. In other words, Americana is about more than the US, as it’s really the indigenous roots music of the Americas and it’s multi-ethnic to the bone.”
Our managing editor, Diana Lopez, has a message for you: