Posts Tagged ‘Ozomatli’

This week in GO! Magazine’s music section

Friday, May 13th, 2011

It’s been a long time coming, but Empty Space Orchestra’s new album is here, and that means the local instrumental rock band has a CD-release show on Thursday. I caught up with ESO last week and we talked about their popularity in Bend and taking their show to new towns.

“I don’t really feel like I want it to happen faster,” guitarist Shane Thomas said. “I mean, it would be nice if it would, but we know we’ll have to go to other cities and play for, like, 15 and 20 people. That’s nothing that’s old for us, but it’s definitely nice to be able to come back here and play for (big crowds).”

Saxophonist Graham Jacobs said the band is “pretty excited” to play new towns, a point drummer Lindsey Elias reiterated after acknowledging that well-attended Bend shows are always a boost.

“But it’s also nice to really get in front of the few people that are there in those different cities that have … virgin ears,” she said. “That’s what’s fun, to see people’s reactions to something they’ve never seen before.”

Click here to read the whole thing, won’t you?

(There is another video of Ozomatli performing in Bend on Frequency’s YouTube channel.)

Like most of Bend — OK, not most, but a lot of people — Feedback got swept up in last week’s Cinco de Mayo celebration in downtown Bend. I loved Rubblebucket’s music, missed Todd Haaby, and was wowed by the crowd for the headliner, Ozomatli.

It was a sea of party-hungry humanity: beers aloft, kids on shoulders, smiling faces, sombreros flying through the air and folks finding whatever space they could to dance to the sounds of Ozomatli, the L.A.-based Latin fusion band that headlined the night and charged through a set of fiery songs that only fueled the celebration.

Ozomatli has become world famous for its versatility, and they showcased it in Bend, bouncing easily from hip-hop to cumbia to funk to reggae to straight-up punk rock, reflecting the cosmopolitan sprawl of their hometown. Highlights included the stomping rap-rock of “City of Angels,” an epic, brassy ranchera tune called “Caballito” and “La Temperatura,” a heavily Latin-flavored number that inspired chaos among the crowd.

I hope you’ll read the whole thing by clicking here.

Elsewhere in the music section: Tyler Fortier brings his excellent songs to the Silver Moon, Roger Clyne & The Peacemakers return to town, members of the Hieroglyphics crew headline a hip-hop show and The Bobby Lindstrom band and Sisters Americana Project celebrate new CDs, plus Cicada Omega, Will West and Mumbo Gumbo, and a Last Band Standing update.

Tonight: Ozomatli/Rubblebucket, Cash’d Out, Brandi Carlile, MMR and more

Thursday, May 5th, 2011

Time for a math lesson, kids:

Cinco de Mayo + this awesome and long-awaited weather x one of the most robust weeknights of live music I can remember around here = downtown Bend is gonna be bananas tonight.

Here’s a quick roundup of what’s happening:

–The biggest party appears to be Amalia’s Cinco de Mayo celebration, which will shut down part of Wall Street and feature music by the kaleidoscopic pop band Rubblebucket (4:30 p.m.), Bend’s own Todd Haaby & Sola Via (6:30 p.m.) and Latin/hip-hop/rock giants Ozomatli (8:30 p.m.). There’ll also be Mexican food, dancing, a low-rider demo and other fun stuff, all for free. Here’s my story on Ozomatli plus all the details on the event. Listen:

Ozomatli

Rubblebucket

–While the party swirls outside, Seattle-based singer-songwriter Brandi Carlile will be wowing a packed house inside the Tower Theatre. Carlile is a terrific performer, which is why this show (like her previous three appearances in Bend) is sold out. If you’ve already got your ticket, enjoy!

Brandi Carlile

–Just down the breezeway and a little later into the night, MadHappy Lounge will celebrate Cinco de Mayo electronically with NorCal techno kingpin DJ G.A.M.M.A., plus DJs Rada and Huff. That one will get going around 9 p.m. and is free.

DJ G.A.M.M.A.

–Meanwhile, up on Greenwood Avenue, the astoundingly authentic Johnny Cash tribute band Cash’d Out will transform the Domino Room into a big ol’ time machine to the 1950s and ’60s. The San Diego quartet has the look and sound of early Cash (and his band, the Tennessee Three) down pat. More info is here, and for this one, you need visuals.

–Finally, if you’d prefer your Cinco de Mayo tunes to have a little more local flavor, considering hitting The Summit Saloon & Stage around 9 p.m. for one of Bend’s most popular party bands, the Moon Mountain Ramblers. Or shimmy up to McMenamins Old St. Francis School at 7 p.m. for Brothers in Achord, a new bluesy/folksy collaboration between local singer-songwriters Josh Hart and Leif James.

Have fun out there, folks, and be safe.

This week in GO! Magazine’s music section

Friday, April 29th, 2011

Downtown Bend will celebrate Cinco de Mayo in style Thursday as L.A. fusionistas Ozomatli headline a free outdoor celebration on Wall Street. My conversation with band co-founder Ulises Bella focused more on Ozo’s world travels than its music.

But it’s the band’s role as U.S. Department of State-designated Cultural Ambassadors that sparks a fire in Bella. When he talks about Ozomatli’s music, he sounds excited. When he talks about its overseas work, he sounds inspired.

Since 2007, the band has traveled to Nepal, India, Myanmar, Madagascar, Jordan, Tunisia, South Africa, Egypt, Mongolia and China on official government business, playing free public concerts, conducting workshops and doing community outreach in, as Bella puts it, “places no bands go to.”

To wit: Last summer, Ozomatli performed for thousands of people in a public square in Mongolia’s capital, Ulaanbaatar. They were the first Western band to play there. Ever.

“We feel like some pioneers. Like, yo, we’re gonna go into this country and … maybe a handful of people might know who we are,” Bella said. “In a weird way, it’s a great litmus test for letting the music stand on its own.

“In a lot of ways, there’s something in our music, especially rhythmically, that you can latch onto and be like, ‘Hey, I kind of know this. This kind of seems familiar to me,’” he continued. “We start playing and immediately the reaction is for the most part overwhelmingly positive.”

Bellas was great interview. I hope you’ll click here to read the whole thing.

Elsewhere in this week’s jam-packed music section, we’ve got short stories on Cash’d Out and The Staxx Brothers, plus The Northstar Session, Mad Rad, The Anvil Blasters, Sara Jackson-Holman, Super Adventure Club, Brandi Carlile, Floater, Tony Smiley and Marv Ellis, the Acorn Project and more.

Ozomatli, Rubblebucket playing Cinco de Mayo in Bend

Friday, March 18th, 2011

The team of blogmonkeys stationed inside the Frequency Command Bunker has been a little slow with the “publish” button recently, so chances are good you already know that the fantastic Latin rock/hip-hop band Ozomatli is playing a free, outdoor show on May 5 in downtown Bend.

Pretty exciting!

Today, even more exciting news about that show: Rubblebucket, the globally inspired, funky pop band that by all accounts completely slayed The Bite of Bend last summer, has been added to the lineup of what the C3 Events Facebook page calls a free “Cinco de Mayo Street Fair” (presented by Amalia’s restaurant). Local flamenco band Todd Haaby and Sola Via will also play.

Combine all that with Bend fave Brandi Carlile’s soon-to-be sold out show at the Tower Theatre that night (tickets are available today and are going fast), Cinco de Mayo is shaping up to be a very fun night on Wall Street. Start thinking warm thoughts now.