Archive | May, 2013

THAT week

31 May

Midterms. Finals. Weddings. Quinceañeras. THere is always THAT one week in the year or every few years that drives us crazy. Its massively eventful. Stressful and messes with the mind and body. This week still has 2 whole days left, but it has already marked me with moments measured only in weight gain (?!).

My friend from high school (whom I used to be very close to because her dad taught me how to play the guitar and first exposed me to traditional church and mariachi music) had her little brother pass away from heart failure at the age of 21. I remember that he couldn’t play outside with kids and that he was rushed in critical condition several times. When Angie’s little sister, Liz, turned 15 Angie’s dad requested that the catholic mariachi that I was playing with play for Liz’s 15. The 15 was very close to not happening because Cesar had actually died, but then ressucitated  the night before. I remember the emotional speech Angie’s dad gave to all of the people at church. Cesar went on to be the voice double for a play in high school (yes they even have voice doubles in high school plays). Then I saw him on local cable tv singing for the SAUSD school board. The last time I saw Cesar was 2 years ago when Liz was a part of my all-female mariachi and we went to play for Angie’s mom. Cesar came out in his Simpsons PJ’s to listen to us and of course was beaming with a smile and very polite. RIP Cesar and I hope you finally get the rest you deserve.

That was on Sunday of a new week.

On Monday, feeling the stress of the coming week, I turned pale white in the middle of a wonderful lunch with some awesome friends. The cause? Low blood pressure from stress. Yikes. Luckily, I got to see Jesse and Joy in concert at the House of Blues in Anaheim.

Tuesday and Wednesday were massively eventful and had me going home feeling like… I was at SHS again and it was 2009 and I was a first year teacher again. You know when you dream that you are at work and something goes terribly wrong like you forget to set up a microphone, forget to set your alarm clock on an extremely important day? Yup, those dreams happened Wednesday night.  Good news. Little Kubasek is now officially going to be making his/her presence to the world. Something to feel AMAZING about!!

Thursday. After a BRUTAL day of sound checks in the heat I had a recital for my after school music class which went very well. However, the heat didn’t help and I was also wearing all black and the stupid period just started so I started to over heat in the middle of one of my group’s performances. I felt the white face pail coming so I drank a lot of water and took deep breaths as I conducted. I was so thankful for all the helping hands and response from the parents to help me set up and take down everything. When I got home I ate and HYDRATED like no other. It was amazing how much coconut water, water, and a popsicle finally made me feel better again. Then sad news: my friend from junior high’s uncle passed away.

Amanda was always the loud, dramatic, confused but big hearted girl from orchestra that was raised by her much older aunt and uncle after her dad and mom did not want to raise her and were about to send her to be adopted. Uncle Pot and Aunt Jesse raised Amanda on their own. They made their house wide open to any person from the neighborhood and were known for filling up their station wagon with illegally installed seats in the trunk area to fit even more kids and take them to the mall or beach. They always had parties for Amanda stocked with food and they personally picked up and dropped off every single kid from the party. Uncle always volunteered at school during a time period where parent volunteers were unheard of. Key Club field trip? Uncle Pot would drive us there.  Math Field Day? Uncle Pot was there. Amanda always had a big heart for me since I was the quiet, but talented kid in orchestra. She and her grandma took me to all the Mighty Ducks games I have ever been to in my life. Uncle Pot had the biggest beer can collection and loved to fix up things like tree houses for Amanda. I broke down in tears when I heard of his passing. He was 93 years old. What an good hearted man with the best intentions! He will be greatly missed, but is such a great role model for so many people. RIP Uncle Pot.

Oh and I am typing this on Thursday late at night. Let’s see what Friday has in store.  Let’s do this!!!


La Santa Cecilia – Monedita

21 May

OK so here is another LSC post. They are obviously quite poppy with this song. Its extremely catchy and has a very basic pop structure. Its about living a simple life without being too extravagant with money. Ahhhhh! Such a sigh of relief in the pop world 🙂

Note this is a fan video

La Santa Cecilia – El Hielo

21 May

La Santa Cecilia. I first saw them in 2009 after they opened up for Taller Sur at the Viento y Agua Coffeehouse. I believe Taller Sur was celebrating their 4th anniversary or something like that. This group had such amazing stage presence with overly talented musicians. Oh and the girls voice! It was strong, jazzy, emotional, Janis Joplin with a mariachi feel. Here is a clip of that performance of “El Chicle” their love song corrido.


I knew they were going to be bigger than any trova or any latin alternative group to come out of LA in recent years. Sure enough they began to get bigger gigs, open up for bigger and bigger artists. During their climb to success, they became very close friends with Ruby Castellanos. They often collaborated with her especially La Marisoul- the lead singer. I went to a few get togethers at Ruby’s house with members of LSC being present. I would heard of their struggles to simply pay their rent and make their clothes (?!) with the help of their grandmothers.

When in late 2012 they announced their record deal with Universal Records, it came as no major surprise. Of course they had a marketability factor! Before their official record release, they released a song called “Ice El Hielo” as a reference to the emotional effects of the deportation of undocumented immigrants. Its hard to watch this clip without getting emotional on either end of the spectrum. I showed this video clip to my students since they are singing “La Jaula de Oro” and they were stunned, shocked beyond disbelief and some of the boys even began to cry. See if you can watch it without crying. Without further a do here is “Ice EL Hielo.”