Stateside Presents




Sun, March 24, 2013

1:00 pm


Tucson, AZ

$24.00 - $27.00

This event is all ages

Quasi-hosts of Night 4, Hometown heroes Calexico, become house band for the night, backing other artists and performing their own set of fine music. Let's pretend you don't know who they are and describe them here.
There's always been intrigue and adventure at the heart of CALEXICO. Ever since they were a largely instrumental duo experimenting with their unique collection of instruments and soundtrack sensibilities, Joey Burns and John Convertino have constantly imbued their music with an unparalleled sense of drama, calling upon the myths and iconography of the American West and its Spanish speaking neighbor Mexico, equal parts Sergio Leone, Larry McMurtry, Carlos Fuentes and Cormac McCarthy. Naming themselves after a town near the California/Mexico border in honor of this cultural mélange, they've spent the eighteen years since they met in Los Angeles mapping out musical territory that had otherwise been neglected or at the very least considered the preserve of historians.
CALEXICO's music has always mirrored Burns and Convertino's penchant for new experiences. From their intimate beginnings on Spoke, their dusty but highly evocative debut album for Germany's Haus Musik label, they've never shied away from embracing whatever inspires them. As their horizons have expanded, through both their relentless touring schedule and growing reputation, they have been able to call upon a growing community of collaborators and an ever-increasing familiarity with music from around the world, integrating both seamlessly into their idiosyncratic sound.
Known for their ability to adapt to working with other musicians - from Nancy Sinatra to Neko Case- the cast on CARRIED TO DUST for example, includes Sam Beam, who appears on 'House Of Valparaiso', a furthering of their work together on Iron And Wine's breakthrough release In the Reins. Tortoise/Brokeback mainstay Douglas McCombs contributes to the ghostly sounds of album closer 'Contention City', and Pieta Brown lends her plaintive charms to 'Slowness', 'one of the album's few love songs', Burns admits. Amparo Sanchez (of Amparanoia, whose solo debut was recently recorded in Tucson with CALEXICO and who appeared on fourth album Garden Ruin) guests on 'Inpiración', while Jairo Zavala - another acclaimed Spanish artist to benefit from CALEXICO's production and playing skills on his forthcoming album - contributes to a number of tracks, including the upbeat opener 'Victor Jara's Hands'. Meanwhile, on 'Bend To The Road', Mickey Raphael - who CALEXICO met while working on the soundtrack to the acclaimed Bob Dylan biopic I'm Not There - shows why his understated harmonica skills have not only earned him a place in Willie Nelson's band since the mid 1970s, but have also seen him work with the likes of U2, Emmy Lou Harris and Neil Young.
'The collaborative side to what we do is probably most recognizable on this album,' Burns states proudly. 'Over the years we've played on many people's albums and done remixes for groups like Goldfrapp, Arcade Fire and Gotan Project. I had this idea to do a straight up band album with all our members and then next, record an album where we back up a bunch of guests we've worked with in the past or who we'd always want to work with. The more I mentioned this idea, the easier it seemed to ask friends to sit in on current songs. All these distinctly different parts work in their own way to highlight the many aspects of our sound and feel. Whether from Barcelona, Berlin, Austin or Iowa City, there is a thread that flows through our music.'
Of course CALEXICO these days is a band, something that became most apparent on their 2006 album Garden Ruin, when Burns and Convertino were joined by regular cohorts pedal steel player Paul Niehaus, Volker Zander (bass, upright bass) and multi-instrumentalists Martin Wenk and Jacob Valenzuela (who also takes lead vocal for the first time on 'Inspiración' alongside Amparo Sanchez) for the writing and recording sessions. 'We knew we wanted to embrace some sweeping changes,' Burns recalls, 'and we wanted to experiment more with mixing in a different studio with a producer. We even asked a different artist to help with the artwork. There will always be that desire to move forward with this band. We rarely seek to repeat or return to formula.'

They all bring creative ideas to the table, but there is a definite direction and aesthetic that John and I oversee throughout the whole process.'
This final album is arguably CALEXICO's best recorded to date, one that reaches beyond their lo-fi roots without sacrificing any of the detail that has made them such a unique band.
Simply put, The Rebirth Brass Band is an institution. Formed in 1983, the band has long since graduated from the streets of New Orleans to theaters and festivals all over the world. Rebirth is committed to upholding the tradition of brass bands while at the same time incorporating modern music into their show. Their signature brand of heavy funk has placed them among the top brass bands in the world, and they are - hands down – the favorite among the younger generation.

With a critically acclaimed 2006 release, "Rebirth For Life," the band delivered its best studio album in years, and has continued to tour relentlessly throughout the world. Rebirth's invigorating, free-form-style music (that only sounds spontaneous) is the combination of immense talent, passionate dedication to their craft, an indomitable collective spirit, and a complete immersion in the New Orleans street tradition. Few bands today can match the infectious energy this powerhouse brass ensemble emanates in every performance.
The Heartless Bastards' story starts in Dayton, Ohio, where Wennerstrom found the name on a multiple choice video trivia game at a bar.

As a songwriting teenager during a time when GBV and Brainiac were packing local bars and three of the Breeders were still in town, Wennerstrom used to sneak into clubs to check out the scene. "I would just see those people—my music heroes—hanging out at the bar like everyone else," she remembers. "I could see myself in them. It gave me inspiration to do my own thing."

After doing the usual business of playing local shows, the trio set out the following year on a regional tour. One of the first gigs of the trip took them to a bar in Akron, where Black Keys' drummer Patrick Carney just happened to be one of only a handful of people in the audience. This chance encounter led Wennerstrom and the Heartless Bastards to Fat Possum Records, with whom they released their debut, Stairs and Elevators, in early 2005.

The band moved on with critical praise in their back pocket, including a four-and-a-half star review from Rolling Stone, which took note that, when Wennerstrom "opens her throat on Stairs and Elevators … she sounds like she's wailing on the shoulders of giants; her sad and angry vocals channeling all the swagger and spit of a young Robert Plant"

By whatever yardstick you care to measure, it was high time for Erika to get out of Dayton.

In true ascetic discipline, she moved to Austin, Texas in 2007 for a change of inspirational scenery and a new recording project. With the help of producer Mike McCarthy (Spoon, Trail of Dead), she assembled a group of musicians with whom she gave the songs life and uncovered yet another layer of Wennerstrom and the Heartless Bastards. Two of the new Bastards aren't Texas ringers, but fellow Dayton brethren Dave Colvin on drums, and Jesse Ebaugh on bass, who actually played on the original demo that hooked Fat Possum, throw in one Austin native on guitar, Mark Nathan and you've got a new unstoppable force that "Take the stage and literally knock everybody down"

The Decemberists' guitarist Chris Funk said, "It's been a few years since I've had a voice on repeat in my mind. This voice seems to arrive in my ears while sound checking, often before the shows on a pre-show play list and after shows too -- the songs are just perfect and the band has found their spots behind this incredible woman. A unique and enduring artist arrived into our world once again."
Sergio Mendoza y La Orkestra: It’s a safe bet that most of us haven’t heard the term “Indie Mambo” to describe a group before now, because such a style simply did not exist until young Sergio Mendoza invented it in late 2009, in Tucson, Arizona. The impetus? Mendoza was participating in an annual benefit event held at the world famous Club Congress, called ‘The Great Cover-Up,’ and had chosen the legendary Cuban bandleader Perez Prado as his coveree, as the rules of the event dictated. But combining that influence, as well as Cumbia and other Latin styles, with psychedelia-tinged rock music proved to be a formula that was extremely palatable, nay – savory, to Arizona music fans and Mendoza’s fellow musicians.
The B-Side Players make music without borders or boundaries. On Fire In The Youth, their seventh album and first for Concord/Picante, they continue exploring the multifaceted grooves of Latin America and the Caribbean, incorporating the sounds of Cuba, Jamaica, Mexico and Brazil with the funk, rock, jazz and hip-hop rhythms of their homeland. With Latin music currently dominating the charts in most of the world, The B-Side Players are uniquely positioned to bring their uplifting message of unity, brotherhood and dance floor revolution to the people of planet Earth.

The B-Side Players are part of a new movement in popular music, a band that honors the international cross-pollination that has always made music the universal language. They use any beat that catches their ear, regardless of geography or genre, to create a compelling, horndriven, polyrhythmic groove. "The root of all pop music is African," says Karlos Paez, the band's lead vocalist, trumpet player and founder. "Our sound acknowledges that fact. That's why the music is so soulful. We're playing the ancient beats that came from Africa to create reggae, son, Afro-beat and funk and mixing 'em all together."

The band has been laying down their own inimitable global funk since they came together in 1994. Their incendiary live shows made them local legends, while their albums showcased a band with a restless musical intelligence, effortlessly blending genres to fashion their own forward looking, Latin flavored, future-funk.

Fire In The Youth was produced by the band with the help of Quetzal Flores, leader of the Los Angeles band Quetzal, another group with a wide-ranging style based in the Latin American continuum. "Quetzal performed all the guitar tracks on the record," Paez explains. "His eclectic arrangements helped polish our Latin, Mexican, Cuban, Funk and Rock vibe. He also brought a folkloric feel to some of the tracks with his knowledge of Jarocho (a syncopated Afro/Spanish style from Vera Cruz, Mexico) and bajo sexto ( a 12 string instrument with a sound somewhere between 12-string guitar and acoustic bass.) We recorded the whole record in 10 days, live in the studio, then added the vocals, percussion and horns."

Like their past recordings, Fire In The Youth captures the band's scorching musicianship and fierce political energy. The album kicks off with "Alegria", an earth shaking reggatron groove marked by a strong salsa flava. "(Unplug) This Armageddon" rides a high stepping disco funk backbeat while Paez delivers a sizzling Bob Marley-influenced vocal full of soul and sufferation. The song explores the lives of the people that drift from San Diego, to Tijuana, to Los Angeles in search of a better life. The band suggests a return to the Earth and community as an antidote for the technology that seems to be sucking the soul out of modern life. "Fire In The Youth" combines a subtle trip hop pulse, a hint of reggae, a lush string section and a children's choir to offer a prayer for the salvation of the next generation. It's one of the most moving songs the band's ever recorded.

"In a world where people are afraid to say hello or smile and the media presents fiction as reality, it's getting harder and harder to tell what's real from what's not," Paez says. "But the young people are always real and demand the truth. Youth all around the world are marching and protesting. The New World Rebellion is a young, fearless movement coming after the oppressors. This song is an anthem to those young people." A Latin reggae riddim is the foundation of "Crossroads," an inspiring hymn of rebirth that showcases Andy Krier's work on piano and organ, Michael Cannon's inventive drumming and the band's ability to lay down complex percussion tracks to create a cohesive groove. "Warrior Culture" is a salute to the Native Peoples of the Americas, with a jazzy Latin cadence driven by Damian DeRobbio's propulsive electric bass. It features cascading horn lines, delicate keyboard work and a vocal from Paez that blends hip-hop phrasing with his innate gift for melody. The tune closes with an extended conversation between the keyboards, percussion and brass. The band also drops a bit of cumbia ("Mascara,") gritty street samba ("Azucar Natural") son montuno ("Micaela") and jarocho ("El Comal") into the mix.

"We want our sound to continue to grow until we represent the entire range of Latin music," Paez says forcefully. "This time we added a bit of the Vera Cruz, Mexican jarocho flavor, the Afro-Cuban rhumba flavor, the Brazilian samba flavor and the Southwestern border funk flavor. Our sound was passed on to us by our ancestors along with their great teaching – Unity Is Love. We combine different styles and cultures in our music because that's the secret behind the harmony of all races, religions and cultures. The dance floor is testimony to our common ground, our common groove."

Karlos Paez, the man behind the B-Side Players, grew up in a musical family. His father Ezequiel Paez is a world-renowned trombone player and musical arranger who spent 17 years in Los Moonlights from Tijuana and 10 years in La Banda Del Recodo. Paez, Sr. still writes and arranges music for bandas in Mexico. While he was still in grammar school, Karlos heard the music of Bob Marley and started playing guitar and writing songs. He met the musicians that would become the first incarnation of The B-Side Players in an African Drum class at Southwestern Community College in San Diego in 1994. "We were all playing with bands in the local funk and acid jazz scene in the early 90s," Paez recalls. "When we started playing together, our sound was different because we brought an Afro-Latin edge to the music."

The B-Side Players are a force to be reckoned with. "We're proud to be on the frontline of a new musical movement that no longer represents the minority," Paez says happily. "We now represent the Brown Majority. The surfer, suburban stereotype of California is changing fast; it's not all bleach blondes any more. It's nappy, Afro, rice bowled, dirty, dusty, wet, happy struggling people and we're right there in the struggle with our music."
Venue Information:
166 W Alameda St
On the streets of the El Presidio neighborhood
Tucson, AZ, 85701