End of the year usually means the major labels release all their biggest releases of the year and Latin Music is no exception. On the pop side we have releases from Paulina Rubio's Brava and Laura Pausini latest, Inedito, which has a ’Spanish and Italian version. Former Aventura singers Romeo Santos and Henry Santos release their first solo albums. Henry Santos Introducing and Romeo long-anticipated Formula Vol. 1 has been selling like crazy. Even solo, these guys are still the Kings Of Bachata. Not to be outdone is Shakira with another live CD/DVD, Live In Paris.
On The rock side, Mana has yet another deluxe version of Drama Y Luz, with a DVD with videos and bonus tracks not on the original deluxe version. We had another monstrous in-store; this time it was Enrique Bunbury promoting his newest release, Licenciado Cantinas with an autograph session. We sold over 300 advance CDs for the signing and a bunch more online and now we have the vinyl version, if you are so inclined.
With the recent SB 1070 debacle in Arizona, many musicians have come out in support of the immigrant movement. Whether it is boycotting concerts in Arizona, or being part of the pro-immigrant marches going on across the U.S., I am proud to see that many have been behind the movement. However, there have been a number of well-intentioned artists who are writing and releasing songs in support of the Anti-Immigrant movement that are sub-par at best. The songs may come from the heart but most of them are full of clichés and slogans, mostly from those who have not gone through the immigration experience themselves. I don’t want to insinuate that these artists are opportunists, but if you haven’t been writing about immigrant issues since before all this madness in Arizona, you are probably a little late to the party. Besides, would you really want to rally a pro-immigrant song written by the likes of Taboo, probably the least talented member of the pop group The Black Eyed Peas?
Los Tigres Del Norte have been singing about immigration issues for the last forty-something odd years. They themselves immigrated into the U.S. in the late sixties, relocating to San Jose, Ca to try to make a living as musicians. In 1972, Los Tigres scored their first hit, "Contrabando y Traicion," a song that made them a household name in Mexico as well as among Mexicans living in the U.S. The song was considered the first Narcocorrido to become a hit and thus started the Narcocorrido boom that continues to thrive today. Over the years they have written many tunes, including some great songs critical of both the Mexican and U.S. government. But it’s their ability to write about the immigrant experience in the U.S. that sets them apart from most groups. As each immigrant experience is different, so is each song. Below are some of my favorites that Los Tigres Del Norte have recorded featuring different spectrums of the immigration experience:
“Vivan Los Mojados” (Long Live The Wetbacks) from the album Vivan Los Mojados
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