Wednesday, April 19, 2006

The Happy Booker Goes South of the Border-- Top Five Mexican Music Selections by Yours Truly

"If I Only Had an iPod..." This is DC area writer Wendi Kaufman's regular feature on her long-time and widely read litblog, The Happy Booker. And hey, c'est moi-- engaging in shameless promotional efforts apropos of the release of my own audio CD, "The Essential Francisco Sosa or, Picadou's Mexico City." (Yep, what I'm doing here is quoting The Happy Booker quoting myself. If this ain't blogging, what is?)

Yo quiero Mexican music! It isn't all "para bailar la bamba" and the Jumping Bean song. I prefer certain categories. For instance, La Voz; Suave (Cool); Joyas (Jewels); Fresa (literally, "strawberry"-- the closest translation would be "princess"), and this uncategorizable phenomenon that everybody except the clinically depressed wants to raise their hands and clap to --- and dance to -- and shout out to! I am talking about Juanga. I love Juanga. Little grannies love Juanga. Hairdressers love Juanga. You, too, will love Juanga. "Viva Mexico!" sings Juanga.

Here are my top five, by category:

Lila Downs: "Tengo Miedo de Quererte." Lila Downs has a voice that could float an elephant.

Santana:"Twisted." Carlos Santana's music is like a slithering snake crossed with a flock of birds crossed with a great big chocolate ice-cream birthday cake.

Mecano: Descanso Dominical, "Laika" The disco ode to Laika the space dog. Acually, this group is Spanish. Ni modo. Wierdly mystical.

Chanticleer: Mexican Baroque: Music From New Spain, "Ignacio de Jerúsalem: Mass in D Major" Carved gilded roses of sound.

Juan Gabriel: Viva Mexico. Fiesta to the max. Think Paul McCartney x Elton John x Englebert Humperdink x Salma Hayek. But he doesn't look anything at all like Salma Hayek.

Sombreros off to la Booker Feliz!