12th Annual Latin Song Vox Pop Winner
9th Annual World Beat Song Nominee
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Record Label: Self-Released
Home Base: El Paso, Texas
Genre: Latin Reggae
Categories Entered: Best Latin Song, Best Latin Album
Work Submitted: “Cruzando Fronteras”
Artists Featured: Radio La Chusma
Label: self released
Who are your influences?: family, indigenous cultures, roots music
Describe your nominated work: “Cruzando Fronteras” is an answer to the nation’s immigration issue. By giving a peak into the life/thoughts of a migrant worker, the song allows the listener to relate to someone doing whatever it takes to better their life and their family’s life.
Did you use any unusual effects or instruments in this recording?: we did use an electric violin
Were there any happy accidents while in the studio, or did everything go as planned?: we had recorded this song before, so we knew going into the studio how it should sound
How did you raise the funds for this project? How long do you expect it will take to recoup your out-of-pocket recording expenses?: We raised the money by playing a lot of live shows and saving as much as we could. We made back out investment within a few months of CD sales.
Why did you choose to submit this work to The 12th IMAs?: I strongly believe in the song’s message
What’s your definition of success and how will you know when you’ve achieved it?: Success is a state of mind that comes with strangers expressing their love for my music, the a feeling of finishing an album or a tour. I will know I am successful when I am able to provide for my family and to have the world appreciate my music.
How will you leverage your IMA honors to achieve your career goals?: I will include my IMA honor in future articles, biographies, and interviews.
Who’s sitting in your audience and what makes your fans unique?: Our audience is a wide array of music lovers. Our music touches reggae, cumbia, rock lovers, and everyone in between. Our fans are bilingual, bi-cultural, and admire the ancient ways of our ancestors.
What is your guilty pleasure on the road? Any close calls or mishaps while on tour?: On the road we enjoy a round of Frisbee at any rest stop. One time we had a gun pulled on us when we took a wrong turn into a restricted area of the Taos people. I was driving at the time and I wasn’t very familiar with backing up a trailer, so it was pretty stressful, and funny when it was over.
Who are your musical heroes & influences?: My main musical hero is Bob Marley. His faith in GOD, the love of his culture and the drive to share it with the world, had given me a solid goal to work towards every day.
Are there any songs you wish you wrote and why?: Not really, but I’ve felt like some songs were written just for me.
How do you discover new music? Do you buy music or are you content with streaming?: new music comes to me thru my friends. I’m a hermit and I usually hear something after its been out for a couple of years.
How will musicians make a living if fans continue to expect music to be free?: I think the changes in technology are actually taking the music scene back to the live show. Now a days, any amature can record an album in their bedroom, and the quality of music reflects this. The experience of being in the same room with artist, and feeling the vibrations of the music in your bones; will always be the best way to experience music.
What don’t fans/audiences understand about the music industry today?: Most people don’t understand that being a musician is hard work! That there aren’t record label execs walking around with million dollar checks just waiting for the next star. If I’m in the paper, they think im rich and famous…
Are digital singles/EPs vs. full albums the future?: Singles are in our future. I’d like to see a song released when its done, not have to wait til the whole album is out.
Finish this sentence: The music industry is…responsible for misleading the youth.
What do you have in the works for the upcoming year?: In a month or two we will be releasing a couple singles I collaborated with a producer. Continue to perform in California, New Mexico, Arizona, and Texas.