July 08, 2007

This is a Japanese Conjunto band named Los Gatos de Japon. They are pretty good, check out the selection I just posted.

Here is what Hacienda Records says about them . Recognizing that puns are the lowest form of humor, you have to love the pun in the first sentence.

Los Gatos is a Japanese band with a yen for conjunto. That's right, these cool cats that play Spanish language conjunto music in Tokyo may sound a bit unusual, but they're "for real." Los Gatos are Kenji "El Gato" Katsube, accordion and vocals; Hajime "Santa" Matsui, bajo sexto and vocals; Takumi "Mori" bass; and Keiichi "Spock" Tanaka, drums and vocals. They are a group of musicians from the industrial and cultural cities of Osaka and Kyoto who got together as The Gamblers in 1983. In 1992, now hooked on the squeezebox, they renamed themselves Los Gatos after Katsube's nickname, and because they were out "catting around."

Their music can be defined as conjunto, Japanese style. Katsube, also known as "El Rey De La Polka En Japon," played guitar in various rock bands before discovering the accordion. It was love at first sound. Next, he searched for an accordion player to form a conjunto. Frustrated that no accordion player wanted to play Tex-Mex, Katsube decided to learn the instrument himself. He purchased a Hahner Corona II and learned to play by listening to various conjunto recordings. In Matsui's case, he is the only bajo sexto player in Japan. He also has the reputation of being a "string" genius. Mori, who has played with many Japanese bands, first performed in the United States in 1994 during an international concert.

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