Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Genres: World Music, Rock, Latin Music
From the accordion master Valerio Longoria, this album is solid music that connects with the feet and the heart. Highlights include the thumping cumbia title track, on which he handles lead vocals, and "El Canonero," a bol... more »
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From the accordion master Valerio Longoria, this album is solid music that connects with the feet and the heart. Highlights include the thumping cumbia title track, on which he handles lead vocals, and "El Canonero," a bolero evergreen rearranged as a cumbia. Harrowing are the brooding ranchera "Me Vas a Olvidar," on knowing the end is near, and "Pa Que Me Sirve la Vida," a galloping polka ranchera that deals with the breakup with a stark fatefulness. Also compelling are the polka "Negro Destino" and the bolero "Estoy Perdido," two bluesy tunes in which the narrator remains cool and distant even while describing a crumbling relationship. This is the essence of the blues catharsis inherent in conjunto and bolero forms, that even in sad times, one can find salvation and even happiness. --Ramiro Burr
Longoria Stands Out
Kurt Harding | Boerne TX | 01/13/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Most North Americans are unaware that like Canada and the United States, Mexico is also a nation shaped by immigrants albeit to a lesser degree than in the two former countries. So naturally, the various immigrant groups have helped to shape the direction of Mexican music.
Inside the big tent of Mexican music, there are a number of subgenres amongst which is the one that has come to be called alternatively the Norteno or Tex-Mex sound. This was developed when the music of German and Polish immigrants was incorporated into the musical traditions of northeastern Mexico. But unless one has grown up listening to German and Polish polkas or the derivative Tex-Mex, for most it is decidedly an acquired taste.
Those who already enjoy Tex-Mex but have not heard of Valerio Longoria are in for a treat with Caballo Viejo. This is not run of the mill Tex-Mex music. Like the greats of the genre Santiago Jimenez Jr and Flaco Jimenez, Longoria has a unique sound that blends a number of Latin American musical styles which makes his music so enjoyable.
On Caballo Viejo, there is no song that is unlistenable, but to me some are undeniably better than others. Listen especially to the following and you'll see why pioneer Longoria stands out still today:
1)El Canoero-a full-throttle cumbia with superior accordion heroics.
2)Alza la Cara-Another cumbia. What an accordion!
3)Jacinto Ramos-an entertaining murder ballad about a sancho who received his condign punishment from the man he wanted to make a cabron.
4)Caballo Viejo-Ah, this is sweet. The haunting accordion work and plaintive vocals make this the best version of this great song I've ever heard. I generally hit replay on this song several times when I am listening to this CD.
5)Ojos Verde Mar-A bittersweet bolero that will have you ready for the dance floor or a little romance.
6)Alas Quebradas-A song of Peruvian origin that had me thinking of some of the songs of the Argentine group Los Chuchamos Del Tevein. The sound is foreign to Mexican music but Longoria makes it his own.
Amongst the rest, there is also a fine trio of instrumentals on which Longoria demonstrates his squeezebox prowess.
This is a CD I enjoy frequently. So if you enjoy Latin American music in general, but you don't particularly care for Tex-Mex, you ought to hear Caballo Viejo. It may change your mind. And don't let the cheesy CD cover drive you away."