October 10, 2007

MySA.com: Music

This is another music event going on over on the other side of the country, also sounding good.

MySA.com: Music: "The 2007 International Accordion Festival will offer accordionists from different parts of the world a chance to collaborate by performing for and with each other. The festival kicks off at 6:30 p.m. Friday at Arneson River Theater with 'Latino Roots,' featuring Brandan from the Canary Islands, Argentine accordion wizard Chango Spasiuk, and conjunto star Santiago Jimenez Jr. Admission is $5. 'It's a real opportunity to explore the expanse, the quality, the virtuosity, the rootedness and the very big picture of Latino/Hispano music in the world,' said festival organizer Pat Jasper. 'It's a glance at North America and South America and its Latino musical roots. 'It's a glance and a listen to the Old World and the New World, and the Hispano connections that exist there. It's an opportunity to celebrate the stuff we all know and love here in Texas and to consider the ways in which that music is connected to, but very different from, other Latino traditions.' The festival will continue Saturday and Sunday at La Villita with free performances by some of the world's top players, including Bois Sec Ardoin, Canray Fontenot, Lawrence Ardoin and Ed Poullard. There also will be workshops, lecturea and 'Texas Zydeco,' a photo exhibition."

Over the summer I reviewed that book Texas Zydeco (the review hasn't come out but I will link to it when it does) that they are drawing the photo exhibit from and it is worth reading. I never had much interest in zydeco (compared to my love for Cajun music which is better) before reading it, but I really did an entirely new appreciation of it. The pictures are good too. Not as good as the conjunto pictures in John Dyer's book, but good.

By the way, the new Smithsonian adjunct musuem in San Antonio, Museo Alameda, has a whole floor dedicated to conjunto music, and it has enormous prints of Dyer's photos (the best ones are not on his website, such as the one of Juan Viesca and his upright bass on fire, which is great). I can't imagine who but a conjunto fan would give much of a shit about that exhibit, but it is cool to see. There are some old instruments too, including an old Macias bajo, and if I remember right one of Lydia Mendoza's gowns. There is a stage and dance floor as part of the exhibit and they have bands come play, which is ideal since you really have to hear it to appreciate why the pictures of the players are cool.

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