Arriba folklorico music and dance of Mexico show

Arriba folklorico music and dance of Mexico

Summary: An entertaining perspective of folklorico music and dance of Mexico, from the preColumbian era to the modern day, with live interviews with current musicians, dancers, performers in the world of Mexican folklore, as well as updates on events of performances and workshops for Mexican music, dance and folklore.

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 Episode 15 - El Huapango and the Huasteca Region | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: Unknown

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 14- Oaxaca - Jarabe Mixteco and La Gelaguetza | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: Unknown

In this episode of Arriba! Folklorico Music and Dance of Mexico, we travel to the South of Mexico on the Pacific waters, stretching along the coast to the northern part of the Isthmus of Tehuantepec. The state of Oaxaca has one of the largest populations of native indigenous tribes, or "indios" as the Latin Americans call them. Of the seven major cultures and areas of Oaxaca, we focus on 2: the Zapotecas and the Mixtecos. In this episode, the music from the Jarabe Mixteco opens the show. We also discuss the fiesta that takes place in July which is known as La Gelaguetza, or the "fiesta de la Sierra." In the capital city of Oaxaca itself, we describe one of the main indigenous dances, DANZA DE LA PLUMA. Also, during the festivities of La Gelaguetza, the food is rich--in particular, the famed MOLE NEGRO Oaxaqueno. In addition to the mention of the archaeological zones in the region--such as Mitla and Monte Alban--the episode describes the courtship dance of the JARABE MIXTECO, with its stanzas and tableaus for the CHASE, the TORITO and the conquest of the man over woman to symbolize the move from suitor to marriage partner. Especially symbolic is the rose that the lady carries by the stem in her teeth, and which the man grabs from her with his teeth to symbolize the transition from enagement to marriage. The episode ends with the ending musical score of the JARABE MIXTECO. It is usually played by big brass bands during the festivities of La Gelaguetza, but here, we listen to a version performed by mariachis. Copyright (c) 2009, Matrix Solutions Corporation. All Rights Reserved.

 13- Michoacan and the Tarascos | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: Unknown

In this episode of Arriba! Folklorico Music and Dance of Mexico, we explore the idyllic region in Southwestern Mexico, the land of the Tarascan indigenous tribes--the Tarascos-- the state of Michoacan. The Tarascan tribes are a people that feel that they have never been subjugated by the Spaniards--although their land was occupied. Like other indigenous tribes of Mexico today, they still mingle their Spanish language with inclusions of phrases and words from their own native dialects, which descend from the word-of-mouth teachings in the Tarascan tongue. Case in point: the song in the audio podcast episode demonstrates the Tarascan lady singing in Tarascan language, then ending up with a Spanish phrase, as she delves into the eternal theme in Mexican folklore--that "Life is a Dream" (la vida es sueno). In addition to the song whose lyrics are mixed with both languages, the instrumental piece of folklore that is common to the entire region of the Tarascos is the Jarabe Michoacano. This is a longer dance, in which the shyness of the woman is characterized by her never looking at her partner--instead, she stares at the ground through most of the dance, until the joy of the parts signifying fiesta, burro, noviazgo, aguila, estrella, and the final pursuit or chase. In the end, the man (who is wearing a zarape or large gavan) covers her braided hair under her straw hat (sombrero michoacano) and symbolizes the marriage--a union of the man and woman. A fitting end to this jarabe from Michoacan, as this dance contains all the symbolism of work, life, fiesta and fun, courtship (as all jarabes are), conquest of the lady's heart, and commitment of marriage and acceptance of the man by the woman.

 10 - Podcast Promo for Podcamp San Antonio Numero Dos | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: Unknown

In this epioside of Arriba! Folklorico Music and Dance of Mexico, we deliver a 4-minute promo podcast episode IN SPANISH to promote the upcoming event called a "Podcamp." Yes, it is that time of year again. The second annual Podcamp (or Podcast unconference) will be held in San Antonio, Texas, on May 3, 2008. We will represent this podcast series in style. Not only will our presence be known, as we will deliver 2 presentations about the current phenomenon of New Media (podcasting), but we will also promote the podcast series in addition to the recent launch of two other podcast shows. The presentations will be (1) How to avoid burnout and prevent podfading; and (2) How to take your podcast from hobby or Corporate podcast to profitable podcast. We will use examples from the recent launch of the 2 podcast series, the Struggling Entrepreneur (at and Gain Control of Your Day (at The Podcamp San Antonio is an UN-CONFERENCE--that is, an unstructured event where anyone can present and participate--from the novice who is there for education, to the veteran podcaster who si there to take the podcast to the next level. Last year, we had the pleasure of the company of Gary Leland, Mr. P. Dilly, who is also known as the Podcast Pickle, since he has a podcast directory known as the PICKLE. The best part of the Podcamp event is that it is FREE -- a no charge event that helps the podcasting community bond and grow. For more information, contact Michael DeLeon or Jennifer Navarrette (at, or go to the website of

 009 - Show Janitzio plays the Music of the Revolucion Mexicana | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: Unknown

In this episode of Arriba! Folklorico music and dance of Mexico, we focus in detail on the musical corridos and polkas of the Mexican Revolution of 1910 (Revolucion Mexicana). The beginning of this podcast starts with Show Janitzio performing a portion of the polka called Jesusita en Chihuahua. This podcast episode ends with 2 complete songs performed live by Show Janitzio (not played from a CD)--Valentin de la Sierra and La Muerte de un Soldado. An emphasis is placed on the role of the Mexican women during the Revolucion, who fought in the conflict right alongside their men. The 5 most famous heroines in the ballads of the corridos during the Revolucion were: - La Cucaracha - Adelita - Valentina - Juana Gallo and - Jesusita en Chihuahua. For more information about the story told by the corrido of La Cucaracha, you can get the 1954 film by that name from Mexcinema Video Corporation. The complete set of Lyrics can be found in the literary work called Antologia de Poesia Mexicana. You can find the lyrics for Benjamin Argumedo, as well. What is interesting is that Show Janitzio includes an accordion in the group, which is not typical for a traditional group of Mexican musicians known as the trio. However, the accordion adds the flavor that is needed to make the experience of the corrido from the Revolucion Mexicana a wonderful experience. This episode ends with Show Janitzio playing Valentin de la Sierra and La Muerte de un Soldado. Copyright (c) 2007, Matrix Solutons Corporation and Show Janitzio. Music performed by Show Janitzio and published with their permisison.

 008- Show Janitzio plays music of the Trios | File Type: audio/x-wav | Duration: Unknown

In this episode of Arriba! Folklorico Music and Dance of Mexico, we go further into the discussion of the grenres of the Romantic music of the Golden Age (Siglo de Oro) of Mexican Music during the 1950s and 1960s with the troubador group (los trios) called Show Janitzio. The interview is conducted live at Estela's Restaurant in San Antonio, Texas. The musical piece titled A LA MUJER QUE YO AME begins this episode; and it is played in completion at the end of this podcast episode. Special attention is paid to the composers of these romantic ballads and to the titles of the more famous songs--e.g., Roberto Cantoral, the composer of EL RELOJ, LA BARCA and REGALAME ESTA NOCHE, etc. Also, listen to see which composers and which songs are the favorites of the group Show Janitzio. In addition, the next episode of Arriba! Folklorico Music and Dance of Mexico will be focusing on the corridos and polkas of the Revolucion Mexicana of 1910. Copyright (c) 2007, Matrix Solutions Corporation and Show Janitzio. Album Art displayed and Music played with permission from Show Janitzio.

 007- The Golden Age or 'Siglo de Oro' of Mexican Romantic Music - Interview with Trio and Quartet - Show Janitzio | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: Unknown

In this episode of Arriba! Folklorico Music and Dance Of Mexico, we have an interview with the 4 musicians that comprise SHOW JANITZIO, a musical troubador group that specializes in the romantic ballads of the Golden Age of Mexican Music in the 1950's and 1960's. However, this trio and quartet also show their flexibility by being able to play any style of Mexican music on demand--from boleros to rancheras to corridos to polkas, etc. The differential advantage of this group is the inclusion of the accordion that brings a style all their own. Listen to the 4 musicians as they describe their performances in their home base of San Antonio, Texas, as well as their tours across the cities of the United States and internationally, as well. In another set of podcast episodes, we will have the songs from this group played at the end when we focus upon not only the romantic period of the Mexican Music during the SIGLO DE ORO (the Golden Age), but also the corridos of the Revolucion Mexicana of 1910. Note: This present episode is from the archives of a related podcast called The Struggling Entrepreneur at Although it goes deeper into the history of the group and their struggles to become successful in the world of professional troubadors, the content is just as interesting to the world of folklorico music and dance--especially with the emphasis on the Golden Age of Romantic Music of Mexico. For it is here that we see the final evolution of the serenata (serenade) in the modern day--from its humble beginnings in other genres of Mexican folklorico music, such as in Jalisco (see episode 001 for a brief discussion of the serenade by the charro). We have 2 more episodes with Show Janitzio, in which we will focus strictly on the folkloric music and dance of the Mexican Revolution or the Revolucion Mexicana of 1910, especially the polkas and corridos. We will also have a separate episode where we will look deeper into the romantic music of the Golden Age -- the decades of the trios mexicanos.

 The folklore from the Isthmus of Tehuantepec: Chiapas and the music of the marimba | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: Unknown

This episode covers the music and dance of the Isthmus of Tehuantepec in Mexico--in particular, the state of Chiapas and the sound of the marimba. In this episode of Arriba! Folklorico Music and Dance of Mexico, we discuss the costume of the Chamula tribe in Chiapas and some of the older folklorico dances in the state of Chiapas--el Jibali, el Rascapetate and Las Chiapanecas. As you can see from the image, above, the women wear beautiful, full, black dresses that have been decorated with bright colors with patterns of tropical flowers. The men of the region wear calzones de manta (trousers), camisa de manta (shirt), huaraches (sandals) and sombrero de paja (straw hat). As the podcast describes, the men usually work in the plains areas of Chiapas, either cutting wood or cutting sugar cane with their machetes. 1. From the stories of Don Juan Tenorio, the Jibali (wild boar) descends upon the unsuspecting wives of the villagers and tries to deceive them and win their favor. Obviously a symbol of an intruder who preys upon the innocence of the women of the family, the Jibali dances in circles as he enjoys the liberty to win the favor of the women. However, the men of the village discover what is happening and return to the village, machetes in hand. They deal a vengeful blow and destroy the Jibali, after which they tie him to a couple of bamboo shoots and carry him off the stage. This dance symbolizes the respect for women due by their partners and the punishment dealt to a deceiving intruder. 2. El Rascapetate is another courtship dance, in which the flaring of the rebozo (woman's shawl) highlights the mellow choreography that quickly changes into a fast, dynamic rythm of happiness and the agreement of the woman to the courtship and marriage of her suitor. 3. Las Chiapanecas is the most famous melody of the state of Chiapas, in which the homage is paid to the lovely ladies of Chiapas. Simple and melodic in its tune, this is a favorite among the schools of the US during the Cinco de Mayo festivities, as many of the educational institutions teach the basic steps of this dance to the children. It is a happy and enjoyable melody that rivals only the world-known melodies of Mexican music of the Jarabe Tapatio (a son jalisciense) and La Cucaracha (a corrido from the Mexican Revolution of 1910). We look forward to the next podcast episode, in which we are trying to confirm an interview. We are trying to confirm with a musician in Austin who is a professional that plays the marimba tropical. We are also trying to locate other musicians who can describe and play for us some of the more famous public domain corridos of the Revolucion Mexicana. In the meantime, we hope you enjoy the lovely music and dance of the Isthmus of Tehuantepec, especially the state of Chiapas.

 Episode 004 -- Indigenous folkloric dance in Pre-Columbian Mexico | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: Unknown

Imagine it to be the late 15th Century or early 16th Centruy -- a time before the year 1519, before the arrival of the Spaniards to Mexico. It is a cool and breezy afternoon in the central highland plateau of Mexico. It is possibly the afternoon of the equinox, a religious feast day of tremendous magnitude in the religion of the people that inhabit a major metropolis of nearly one million people in the city of Tenochtitlan, the capital city of the Aztec empire. The call from the conchas, or shell, alerts the people that the hour has arrived for the religious celebration to take place around the base of the pyramids in the center of the city. The entire population will be asked to participate. From all the causeways that lead to the center of Tenochtitlan, the people come marching to be in the festivities in which they will pay thanks and homage to their deities. Atop the top of the pyramid, at the teocalli, the smoke from a small fire can be seen; the high priests from the orden sacerdotal, or the sacerdotal order, await for the massing of the people. When they are all together, the festivities begin – -the incantations are given, - the guerras floridas take place; these are the mock battles and mock wars fought with flowers and banners surrounded by flowers on bamboo or reed shafts carried by warriors and swung like knives and swords, instead of the real weapons; - the human sacrifices are performed; - and then the dance begins... this podcast opens by setting the stage of the folkloric dances of the ancient Aztec empire -- what we call, las danzas indigenas – the folkloric dances of the indigenous tribes of Mexico. This scenario took place in many of the indigenous tribal cities – from Tlaxcala to Cholula to Tenochtitlan, the central might of the Aztec empire, which is today Mexico City. In this episode, we will cover the danzas indigenas, that is the pre-Columbian era of Mexican folklore and dance. We cover 3 regions or tribes and their pre-Columbian dances: (1) the Aztecs with their dances honoring their deities called Quetzalcoatl and Huizilopotchli; (2) the Poblanos and their Danza de los Quetzales; and (3) the famous Danza del Venado of the Yaquis in the Northwestern desert areas of Sonora. Different examples of the music are given in this podcast episode, as the recordings came from an outdoor, live performance of Ballet Folklorico groups in a free presentation at the large open-air ampitheatre in San Antonio, Texas. This podcast also contains a brief discussion of the importance of folkloric dance to the indigenous peoples of Mexico, as well as how it set the stage of the evolution of what is today folklorico music and dance of Mexico, after the coming of the Spaniards and the Conquest of Mexico. The pre-Columbian folklore dance is also shown in the repertoire of the Ballet Folklorico de Mexico. This Ballet has been a great ambassador of Mexico to the world in promoting the folklorico music and dance of Mexico.

 Interview in the "Immigration Tales" podcast | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: Unknown

This posting, along with an episode from another podcast in which I was interviewed, may seem to digress a bit from our pure episodes of Mexican folklorico music and culture. But because the first part of the interview dealt with this podcast series, I have included it as an espisode, thanks to Victor Cajiao and his podcast series, Immigration Tales. For those who may want only to listen to the folklorico music and dance content, then I will post the next episode shortly -- with the theme of las danzas indigenas precolombianas. So be advised that we will deliver that to you soon. However, on Friday afternoon, 15 June 2007, I had the privilege of discussing my story of being an immigrant to the United States--not once, but twice. I was fortunate to collaborate with Victor Cajiao, the Podcaster of the Immigration Tales podcast on iTunes. Victor was the interviewer, and I the interviewee. You can listen to the mp3 file here on this episode; or you can subscribe to the series on iTunes; or you can go to the Immigration Tales web site. In short, Victor started with questions and curiosity about my entrance into podcasting with the current podcast of Arriba! Folklorico Music and Dance of Mexico. He liked the introductory music of the podcast's episode 3 (Veracruz, the Jarocho Music, and El Son de la Bamba) that he used the outdoor ampitheatre festivities at Fiesta in San Antonio, Texas as the beginning of his episode 13 for Immigration Tales. I did describe my entrance into podcasting as a passion for the history of the Mexican culture, in particular, the folklorico music and dance of my native Mexico. Victor also then spent some time on my immigration experiences from Mexico to the USA, as well as my adjustment and acculturation. However, the different twist in this Immigration Tales podcast was that I had another immigration story -- and that was when, as a combat infantryman who had just finished serving a tour of duty in Vietnam during the past war, I had a migration upon returning to the United States from Vietnam. Needless to say, my love of folklorico music and dance will keep me posting episodes. I do plan the next one to include the cultural origins of the folklore from the pre-Columbian era--the dances and music of the indigenous tribes (like the Aztecs) that populated Mexico with their civilizations before the arrival of the Spaniards and the conquistadores. I will make sure to include some content of the dances performed in Tenochtitlan, which is present-day Mexico City. But my thanks to Victor Cajiao for his enthusiasm for the theme of Immigration, his professionalism as an interviewer and his passion for podcasting. And, yes, Victor is himself one of the subjects of Immigration Tales, as he is a Cuban immigrant to the USA. His story is the first episode, and I strongly suggest that you visit his web site and listen to it (or subscribe to the series in iTunes). In case you haven't listened to Victor before, he did have a previous podcast series called the Typical PC User podcast. Although he has completed the run of that podcast, he has another series (if you are a user of Apple's computers), called Typical Mac User podcast. He shares a lot of good and useful information to the community of computer users in this platform.

 Episode 003- Veracruz and the Jarocho music and dance - and La Bamba | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: Unknown

In this episode, we explore the Eastern coast of the Gulf of Mexico, in the lively culture of the Jarocho people in Veracruz and those around the River Papaloapan. Besides el Tilingo Lingo. la Bruja and El Aguanieve (El Zapateado), the focus is on the wedding dance, el son de La Bamba. In addition, the costumes are vividly described, along with the romantic Mexican custom of the serenata (the serenade), but this time, Mananitas con jarana. Notice that the gentleman Jarocho dancer and his lady companion would sometimes compete to the vibrant, rhythmic steps of the very fast heel-and-toe movements and steps called zapateados and taconeados (as is depicted in the photo of the dance, el son del tilingo lingo). On other occasions, the women would imitate the movements with their skirts of such animals such as palomas (doves) and mariposas (butterflies). One such dance is El Palomo y la Paloma, where the man's chivalry shines through. In some folklorico groups, the gentlemen bring in chairs to the stage so that the ladies may be seated. During the dance, the men tip their hats, remove them and bow, while genuflecting in front of their damsel, to show the high respect that Mexican men had for the women that they were courting. On other occasions, the loveliness of the mestiza came through in a sensual dance called La Bruja (the witch). The serious look of the women pervade the evening as they dance with lit candles on their heads. As these women solo in their purely feminine dance, the theme of woman being the enchantress is dominant in this tropical region. The music is lively, with songs famous as the Canto a Veracruz, El Balaju and El Siquirisi, as well as El Cascabel. The musicians play with the Veracruz harp, which is smaller and much more vibrant than the classical harp. A very similar harp is played in neighboring Venezuela, whose coastal peoples have a lively culture very similar to that of the jarochos. In addition to the melody lead of the harp, the jarana and requinto add accompaniment and rhythm, as well as the Spanish guitarra. The competition for groups and families is seen in El Aguanieve (also known today as El Zapateado), where improvisations and contests reign on the tarima (the wooden platform), and the finale ends with the entire ensemble participating together in the last verses. The couples perform their dynamic steps in their white costumes, reflecting the heat of this subtropical climate. The jarocho region of Veracruz is considered to be one of the liveliest and happiest areas of Mexican folklorico dance. For some people, it is incredible to imagine that these songs, like the wedding song of La Bamba, were being danced in the 18th century (during the time of the American War for Independence, also known as the Revolutionary War). Today, La Bamba is still the favorite of wedding couples, as they tie the knot (literally) by dancing steps while tying a bow with their feet, signifying their union and unity in marriage. It is the audio of La Bamba that is featured in this podcast episode 003.

 mp3 file of the Interview with Jose Hernandez-episode 002- click here | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: Unknown

Please note: from the prior post, you will notice that this episode with the interview actually is posted on another blog, since I had trouble getting access into this version of The web link takes you to an embedded player, where you have the click-to-play option. However, if you wish to download the mp3 file for this episode to your ipod, please click on the link highlighted, above in the title of the post.

 Episode 2 - Fred Castaneda conducts Interview with Jose Hernandez-Director of Mariachi Sol de Mexico | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: Unknown

In this episode, Federico Castaneda interviews Jose Hernandez, the director-creator of El Mariachi Sol de Mexico (R), and the discussion includes not only folklorico dancing and the accompaniment of mariachis with the performers, but also touches upon the topics of the musical genres of Mexican music, artists and directions & trends. Impressive is the vast scope that Jose Hernandez includes in his love of Mexican music -- composer-arranger-author-singer-musician-performer-humanitarian-educator -- and his contribution not only to the style and implementation in the last 25 years, but also in his quest to keep the spirit of folklorico music and mariachi music and Mexican music alive forever in our hearts. A special treat includes the performance of 2 musical pieces: (1) the inclusion of a few seconds of his mariachi playing their "sol de Mexico" introduction at the beginning; and (2) the inclusion of the complete piece of the song called "El Rey de la Huasteca"--which is described and discussed during the interview. For more information about the songs, about purchasing the music, about the restaurant Cielito Lindo, or about the Mariachi Sol de Mexico or Jose Hernandez, please visit the web site of: www.

 12- Noche de Mariachi- 1st annual Mariachi festival gala event | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: Unknown

This episode of Arriba! Folklorico Music and Dance of Mexico describes the wonderful evening at the Paramount Theatre in downtown Austin, Texas, with the first annual gala event called NOCHE DE MARIACHI. This was not a "battle of the bands." Rather, it was a community of mariachi bands in and near the Austin area for a celebration of the mariachis in central Texas. The quality mariachis that were featured and played their songs (which did not overlap with other pieces performed by other groups)-- - Mariachi Los Lobos - Mariachi Estrella - Mariachi Suroeste - Mariachi Relalmpago and there was a special solist, Rebekah Ramos, who was accompanied by el Mariachi Relampago, when she performed 2 songs, one of them being SOLAMENTE UNA VEZ. What a lovely piece and performed exquisitely well. There was a folklorico dance group called the Pan American Ballet Folklorico that performed 2 numbers--they opened the event with LA CULEBRA and ended the show with dancers in the aisles of the theatre as ALL the mariachis accompanied them to the piece EL SON DE LA NEGRA by Silvestre Vargas. Yes, there was also a group called Margaritas de Tejas that tried to perform some numbers. Even though the national fad for having all-female groups has reached Austin, this was the only group whose quality did NOT stand anywhere near the quality of the other mariachis. We tried to get a number from the CD of songs of Mariachi Relampago (which they were selling in the lobby, and of which I purchased) to be included in this episode. However, the Mariachi Relampago would not give us the permission to include this. Thus, we had to use a previously recorded live performance of the Ballet Folklorico Estudiantil of the Independent School Districts of San Antonio dancing to the accompaniment of various mariachis in the open air theatre in San Antonio, Texas, during the week-long festivities of the event called FIESTA. Still, the mariachi Relampago, Estrella and Suroeste (from San Marcos, Texas) provided a wonderful evening of dance and culture. This event even included a live wedding (that was called "Mariachi Surprise", in which 2 young people took their wedding vows as they were accompanied by the Mariachi Estrella. The finale was a traditional and powerful experience--as Mr. Bowie Ibarra, master of ceremonies, mentioned--that no gala evening of mariachi music would be complete without the performance of LA NEGRA. And, in this case, all the mariachis crowded the stage and the aisles to play that one song, together as a community of Mexican culture. This was the first performance of this NOCHE DE MARIACHI. I will not miss next year's annual event--and, as I mentioned in the audio episode, I will probably come dressed in my own Traje de Charro, traje de gala, for this celebration of folklorico music and dance of Mexico. Copyright (c) 2008, Matrix Solutions Corporation. All Rights Reserved. Artwork was from the program of the event.

 11- Yucatan and the Dance of the Jarana | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: Unknown

In this episode of Arriba! Folklorico Music and Dance of Mexico, we explore the region of Yucatan -- home of the descendants of the Idyllic indigenous peoples known as the Mayas, and center for the folklorico dance known as the Jarana. In this episode, we explore the beginnings of the big Brass Band, called the Banda Yucateca, and we review the costume worn by both the men and women who danced the Jaranas Yucatecas during the Vaquerias or the Serenatas in the gazebo or town square in municipalities such as Merida. In addition, the practice of the declamador or pregonero reciting the improvised and humorous (and sometimes double-meaninged or picaresque) verses of the BOMBA! is shown by an audio clip from a piece performed in the FIESTA celebration in San Antonio, Texas. The final music that ends this podcast episode is that of the Jarana dance of EL TORO, which symbolizes the conquest of the bull by the matador (in this case, the role of the bull being played by the woman, and the man taking the role of the matador in taunting the beast with his handkerchief, which he uses as a "cape."). Copyright (c) 2008, Matrix Solutions Corporation. All Rights Reserved.


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