Y La Bamba

KGNU Presents

Y La Bamba

Los Mocochetes, Inaiah Luhan

Sunday, 2/24

Doors: 7:00 pm / Show: 8:00 pm

$14 - $16

This event is 21 and over

Y La Bamba
Y La Bamba
Y La Bamba has been many things, but at the heart of it is singer-songwriter Luz Elena Mendoza’s inquisitive sense of self. Their fifth record, Mujeres, carries on the Portland-based band’s affinity for spiritual contemplation, but goes a step further in telling a story with a full emotional spectrum. Coming off Ojos Del Sol, one of NPR’s Top 50 Albums of 2016, Mujeres exhibits the scope of Mendoza’s artistic voice like never before. “Soy como soy,” Mendoza says, and that declaration is the bold— even political— statement that positions Mujeres to be Y La Bamba’s most unbridled offering yet.

The record exists in the post-2016 landscape of a national identity crisis, and Mendoza explores what it means to be a Mexican American woman by leading us through places we are afraid to go. Mujeres ventures in to the discomfort of the stories we tell ourselves. Those of our past, our futures. We all have these stories somewhere inside of us, but with Y La Bamba, Mendoza forges new narratives from old stories of heritage and family, tracing history while forging modern chicana feminism.

“Music is an extension of everything I have inside. It’s how I emote,” Mendoza says. The raw honesty of Mujeres is in fact the raw honesty of Mendoza. Armed with the emotionality of traditional música mexicana and the storytelling of American folk, Y La Bamba’s artistry is not just their musical ability but Mendoza’s search for unadulterated truth. It is in an ancestral, spiritual journey in which Mendoza comes to terms with the influence and limitations of her upbringing. Mendoza’s experience of childhood summers in the San Joaquin Valley listening to mariachi, of being raised strict Catholic by immigrant parents, of being a woman having to prove herself to the boys, paints strokes of both melancholy and healing on the tracks. “From the way that my family struggles, to the way they shoot the shit… it’s so different from whiteness,” Mendoza says. “It’s a different dimension.”

Y La Bamba exists in the dimension of the Mexican American imagination: somewhere cynical and optimistic at the same time. While there is a celebration of the Mexican creativity that has informed Mendoza’s life, there is a darker side to reconcile with. Where do mujeres fit in to the American story? What are the sins for which we are all guilty? How do different generations interact with the world? How can a culture become visible without tokenization? It is no surprise that in Mujeres, Y La Bamba’s first record with Mendoza at the helm of production, Mendoza contemplates these questions to tell her story. But it is not just Mendoza’s story. Challenging a narrative and dealing with the emotionality of that effort— that is everyone’s story.

Mujeres was recorded by Luz Elena Mendoza and Ryan Oxford at Color Therapy Studios and Besitos Fritos Studios in Portland, Oregon. Mixed by Jeff Bond, with Grace Bugbee on bass, John Niekrasz on drums, Margaret Wher Gibson on keys, and Ed Rodriguez and Ryan Oxford on electric guitar.

Bio written by Eliza Cossio
Los Mocochetes
Los Mocochetes
Los Mocochetes are a Xican@ Funk band from Denver, CO. This colorful cast of characters fuses thoughtfully brazen, socio/politically charged song lyrics, groovilicious melodies and high-energy stage antics to create an immersive experience unlike anything you've ever seen before. Much like a machete, which can be used either as a tool to build or a weapon to kill, they have chosen to use their music to inspire and encourage positive social change. Every show is different, but it’s always a dance party with a purpose!
Los Mocochetes received the Westword Music Showcase award for Best Latin Band of 2017 and Best Funk Band of 2018. They were named Colorado Standout for NPR’s Tiny Desk Contest 2018 and opened for contest winner Naia Izumi on the Denver stop of his national tour. They have opened for a variety of national touring acts such as The Original Wailers, Lil’ Wayne, Flor de Toloache, Jessica Hernandez and the Deltas, Dos Santos, The Chamanas and Lil’ Jon. They have been featured in festivals including the Westword Music Showcase (local headliner), Denver Post Underground Music Showcase, Colorado Latino Festival, A Taste of Colorado, Mile High 4/20 Festival, Tribal Visions (NM), and have performed at numerous iconic Denver venues such as the Bluebird Theater, Oriental Theater, Su Teatro Cultural and Performing Arts Center, Denver Art Museum, Levitt Pavillion, Cleo Parker Robinson Dance Company, Mercury Cafe, Larimer Lounge, Syntax Physic Opera, Aztlan Theatre, Lost Lake, Hi Dive, 3 Kings Tavern, Herman’s Hideaway, Lion’s Lair, and a sold out Ophelia’s Electric Soap Box. The band has a strong connection to New Mexico, often touring the state playing as far south as Acapulco, MX and as far north as Cheyenne, WY.
The current lineup features artists with a wide variety of influences. They are poets, singers, painters, rappers, actors, musicians, dancers, producers, composers, dreamers, doers, thinkers. They are gente who make music together and enjoy all forms of creativity. The Mocochetes are here to ignite a fire in every audience member to enjoy the moment and then go out and make a difference!
Inaiah Luhan
Inaiah Luhan
Venue Information:
Larimer Lounge
2721 Larimer St.
Denver, CO, 80205
http://www.larimerlounge.com/