Felix Contreras http://wuis.org en First Listen: Quetzal, 'Quetzanimales' http://wuis.org/post/first-listen-quetzal-quetzanimales Twenty years is a long time in the life of a band. In the case of Quetzal, its two decades have been spent playing the soundtrack of its East L.A. neighborhoods: an evolving mash-up of Mexican <em>son jarocho</em>, low-rider oldies, cumbia, boleros, rock and blues.<p>Many Angelenos consider Quetzal as much as an institution as its East L.A. brethren in Los Lobos. Mon, 21 Jul 2014 03:03:00 +0000 Felix Contreras 29666 at http://wuis.org First Listen: Quetzal, 'Quetzanimales' A New World Of Expression: Latino Identity Through Music http://wuis.org/post/new-world-expression-latino-identity-through-music <p>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jXUsTS5pRks</p><p>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FPIncGcMlU4</p><p>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uSalMU6Oz9A</p><p>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P3iNSnKL2d8</p><p>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UxnoGgwMY98</p> Thu, 26 Jun 2014 17:18:00 +0000 Felix Contreras 28078 at http://wuis.org A New World Of Expression: Latino Identity Through Music Guest DJ With Adrian Quesada, A Man Who Needs Four Bands http://wuis.org/post/guest-dj-adrian-quesada-man-who-needs-four-bands <p>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2PcG6yT2kGY</p><p>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_tKIPuLfeKg</p><p>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iqR4CZj0mJQ</p><p>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mwW6Fiall6Y</p><p>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KxPe9xjk_oE</p><p>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=99FrA6KAua0</p><p>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pNgjmn3YrOM</p><p>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2gQf4l6VdPg</p> Thu, 19 Jun 2014 17:19:00 +0000 Felix Contreras 27580 at http://wuis.org Guest DJ With Adrian Quesada, A Man Who Needs Four Bands First Listen: Rolê, 'New Sounds Of Brazil' http://wuis.org/post/first-listen-rol-new-sounds-brazil This is not your parents' Brazilian music.<p>This is the Brazil where samba, bossa nova and Musica Popular Brasileira meet hip-hop, rock, jazz and electronica. Mon, 16 Jun 2014 03:45:50 +0000 Felix Contreras 27316 at http://wuis.org First Listen: Rolê, 'New Sounds Of Brazil' First Listen: Brownout, 'Brownout Presents Brown Sabbath' http://wuis.org/post/first-listen-brownout-brownout-presents-brown-sabbath One of my first album purchases ever was <a href="http://www.npr.org/artists/123664999/black-sabbath">Black Sabbath</a>'s <em>Masters of Reality</em> in 1971. I actually took it back to my local Tower Records where I bought it because it sounded like there was something wrong with the sound. The guitars, I told them, they sound muffled and fuzzy.<p>That long forgotten hippie record store clerk must have had quite a laugh at the goofy 13-year-old who was clueless about the burgeoning sound of heavy metal guitars. Mon, 16 Jun 2014 03:03:00 +0000 Felix Contreras 27313 at http://wuis.org First Listen: Brownout, 'Brownout Presents Brown Sabbath' Ethereal Jazz Singer Jimmy Scott Dies http://wuis.org/post/ethereal-jazz-singer-jimmy-scott-dies Singer <a href="http://www.npr.org/artists/15395174/little-jimmy-scott" target="_blank">Jimmy Scott</a> died of natural causes Thursday morning at his home in Las Vegas at age 88, according to his booking agent, Jean-Pierre Leduc. <p>Scott suffered from Kallmann's syndrome, a lifelong affliction that prevented his body from maturing through puberty. The condition slowed his growth, leaving his stature at 4 feet 11 inches until his late 30s. Fri, 13 Jun 2014 21:30:00 +0000 Felix Contreras 27218 at http://wuis.org Ethereal Jazz Singer Jimmy Scott Dies First Listen: Pasatono Orquesta, 'Maroma' http://wuis.org/post/first-listen-pasatono-orquesta-maroma They had me at "vintage Mexican circus music." <em>Maroma</em>, the new album by the roots band Pasotono Orquesta, is dedicated to music of the one-man circuses — known as <em>maroma</em> — that traveled in rural Mexico during the late 19th century. Mon, 12 May 2014 03:03:00 +0000 Felix Contreras 24900 at http://wuis.org First Listen: Pasatono Orquesta, 'Maroma' The Grateful Dead's Ultimate 'Dark Star' To Be Reissued http://wuis.org/post/grateful-deads-ultimate-dark-star-be-reissued <p>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oMGUQTK8tXw</p> Tue, 06 May 2014 19:20:00 +0000 Felix Contreras 24545 at http://wuis.org The Grateful Dead's Ultimate 'Dark Star' To Be Reissued Remembering Armando Peraza, An Afro-Cuban Percussion Giant http://wuis.org/post/remembering-armando-peraza-afro-cuban-percussion-giant It's hard to imagine a musical career that included musicians as varied as Charlie Parker, Peggy Lee, George Shearing and Carlos Santana. But such was hand percussionist Armando Peraza's resumé after almost 70 years making music.<p>A boyhood friend of Mongo Santamaria, Peraza was part of the first wave of Cuban drummers to arrive in the U.S. in the late 1940s, bringing authentic Afro-Cuban rhythms to pop music and jazz. His last full-time gig was with Carlos Santana, with whom he toured and recorded for nearly three decades. Thu, 01 May 2014 19:08:00 +0000 Felix Contreras 24211 at http://wuis.org Remembering Armando Peraza, An Afro-Cuban Percussion Giant First Listen: Arturo O'Farrill & The Afro Latin Orchestra, 'The Offense Of The Drum' http://wuis.org/post/first-listen-arturo-ofarrill-afro-latin-orchestra-offense-drum <em>The Offense of the Drum</em> is one of those moments when the course of music with a long tradition is altered slightly — when music moves forward in a subtle and graceful way that's likely to have a lasting impact.<p><a href="http://www.npr.org/artists/90792805/arturo-o-farrill">Arturo O'Farrill</a> has had to fill big shoes: His father Chico O'Farrill was one of the architects of Latin jazz in the late 1940s, and he maintained a presence in the music until his death in 2001. Mon, 28 Apr 2014 03:03:00 +0000 Felix Contreras 23931 at http://wuis.org First Listen: Arturo O'Farrill & The Afro Latin Orchestra, 'The Offense Of The Drum' First Listen: Pacifika, 'Amor Planeta' http://wuis.org/post/first-listen-pacifika-amor-planeta The music of Pacifika draws you in almost immediately: The Vancouver trio's musicianship is superb, buoyed by a voice that stopped me in my tracks the first time I heard it. Pacifika's sound has been labeled as world fusion, but that label is more of a restriction than a description. Mon, 28 Apr 2014 03:03:00 +0000 Felix Contreras 23932 at http://wuis.org First Listen: Pacifika, 'Amor Planeta' 'Cesar Chavez': Discussing The Movie And The Man http://wuis.org/post/si-se-puede-cesar-chavez-man-vs-movie There is no music in this week's episode of <em>Alt.Latino</em>. Instead, we do one of our occasional "deep dives" into a subject to pursue insights and perspectives that help us think about more than music. This time around, the subject is <em>Cesar Chavez</em>, the recent biopic about the civil-rights activist and labor leader and the movement to unionize farm workers.<p>The film has been credited as an example of a Latino filmmaker telling the kinds of stories often ignored by mainstream cinema. Sat, 26 Apr 2014 16:03:00 +0000 Felix Contreras 23875 at http://wuis.org 'Cesar Chavez': Discussing The Movie And The Man Federico Aubele: Tiny Desk Concert http://wuis.org/post/federico-aubele-tiny-desk-concert Argentine singer-songwriter <a href="http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=121339085">Federico Aubele</a> uses his dark, husky voice to produce a specific effect in the three songs he performs at this Tiny Desk Concert: Together, they jell into one impressionistic midtempo ballad.<p>A voice like Aubele's could be restrictive: His lower register seems to always reflect something dark and lonely. Mon, 21 Apr 2014 19:48:00 +0000 Felix Contreras 23470 at http://wuis.org Federico Aubele: Tiny Desk Concert Paco De Lucia, Modern Superstar Of Flamenco, Dies http://wuis.org/post/paco-de-lucia-modern-superstar-flamenco-dies <p>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2oyhlad64-s</p> Wed, 26 Feb 2014 22:28:00 +0000 Felix Contreras 19780 at http://wuis.org Paco De Lucia, Modern Superstar Of Flamenco, Dies Sofia Rei: Tiny Desk Concert http://wuis.org/post/sofia-rei-tiny-desk-concert A drum from the Argentine Pampas fuels the music of Sofia Rei in this video: The way Franco Pinna has it incorporated into a traditional drum set serves as a musical metaphor for the music Rei performs alongside Pinna and guitarist/bassist JC Maillard.<p>Rei carries the accent and spirit of her native Argentina in her jazz-infused vocals. She's successfully carved out a spot for herself within a small and exclusive group of vocalists from Latin America who, after spending their formative years in their own countries, came to the U.S. Sat, 22 Feb 2014 13:03:00 +0000 Felix Contreras 19495 at http://wuis.org Sofia Rei: Tiny Desk Concert Ringing In Black History Month With Latin Music http://wuis.org/post/ringing-black-history-month-latin-music <em>Editor's note: It is February and that can mean only one thing. It is time for </em><a href="http://www.npr.org/blogs/altlatino/2014/02/03/271101301/black-latino-and-proud-black-history-month-with-alt-latino">Black, Latino And Proud: Black History Month With Alt.Latino</a><em> hosted by our friends and colleagues Felix Contreras and Jasmine Garsd. Sat, 08 Feb 2014 00:24:00 +0000 Felix Contreras 18563 at http://wuis.org Ringing In Black History Month With Latin Music First Listen: Gina Chavez, 'Up.Rooted' http://wuis.org/post/first-listen-gina-chavez-uprooted Gina Chavez's voice stops you in your tracks the first time you hear it. At least that's how it worked for me when I came upon her performance during South by Southwest a few years ago. She was playing a semi-acoustic set on a sunlit patio above a busy sports bar — a setting not exactly conducive to her intimate songwriting.<p>But once she started singing, we hardly noticed the noise nearby. Mon, 27 Jan 2014 04:02:00 +0000 Felix Contreras 17707 at http://wuis.org First Listen: Gina Chavez, 'Up.Rooted' La Santa Cecilia: Tiny Desk Concert http://wuis.org/post/la-santa-cecilia-tiny-desk-concert <a href="http://www.npr.org/search/index.php?searchinput=la+santa+cecilia">La Santa Cecilia</a> spreads joy every time its members plug in to do a show. They do it one dance step at a time, with cumbias, corridos, elegant mambos and plain old rock 'n' roll.<p>I first saw La Santa Cecilia perform in an Austin, Texas, parking lot about five years ago. Mon, 16 Dec 2013 19:19:00 +0000 Felix Contreras 15131 at http://wuis.org La Santa Cecilia: Tiny Desk Concert