The Angst Before a Fiery Cultural Experience
I’ve got to admit, moving is challenging, especially when moving a family of seven and its pets. However, I took my own sermon and agreed to explore the unknown. So here I am in Northern California, living in a one-bedroom hotel for the past three weeks. The seven of us, two cats (having lost the third during the road trip here), and a dog in one room at an extended-stay hotel. Misery, miserable, and doubting I will never do this again, ‘cause, I will. Lesson learned, take control and be the project manager next time.
Nevertheless, I’ve begun the cultural explorations. As a culturist a have put out the feelers (read here my clan) for all things cultural and have been pleasantly surprised by the numerous cultural options the Bay Area has to offer. Who’d a thunk?!?!? Why of course Northern California is everything but culturally homogenous!
Our first experience was last Friday. My clan has been trained, by no other than the expert herself, to zero in on all things cultural. So as I grumbled in our room’s kitchenette, eating junk food, fuming with angst, and obviously clogging up my cultural radar, I get a Skype invitation to go listen to some music later that evening. I quickly visited the link and read that Target Summer Pops and the Symphony Silicon Valley, along with support from Applied Materials, Diane & Lee Brandenburg, KCBS, and the City of San Jose, were presenting Ricardo Lemvo & Makina Loca with special guests, San Jose Taiko. How could I turn this down? A free cultural experience is not to be missed!
The clan arrived, having navigated through various cities, towns, avenues, and only cutting off one other motorist in a carefully executed left turn from the far right, to San Jose State University. Thanking the powers that be for giving those scientists and engineers the explorative mind to invent GPS, I maneuvered the Dulcemobile into a compact-car size garage, helping myself to two compact-car size spaces. What is a mother of a Texican-size clan to do?
But I digress, Ricardo Lemvo, Makina Loca, and San Jose Taiko played a fun and hip-shaking beat, quickly having the audience on its feet. My clan rumba-ed its way to the front to get a better look. To our surprise no one was dancing on the dance stage, set up, clearly, for the audience dancers. Two members of my clan, being new to the area, slowly and nonchalantly moseyed their way closer and closer to the stage, while the others kept an eye on security, staying back as lookouts. We didn’t want to be thrown out of our first NorCali cultural experience simply for being foreigners and not yet knowing its concert culture. Turned out, it was an excellent mosey as it attracted those other concert goers, dancing on the side and back aisles, onto the stage, giving thanks to the two that had started it all. Pretty soon our fear was not security or being thrown out, it was the weight limit of the makeshift stage!
Great music, talented musicians, fun dance moves, AMAZING cultural experience!
About Ricardo Lemvo & Makina Loca
Ricardo Lemvo has established himself as a pioneer with his innovative music. Lemvo’s blend of Afro-Cuban rhythms with pan-African styles (soukous, Angolan samba and kizomba) has been described by the Los Angeles Times as “seamless and infectious.” Lemvo is truly multicultural and equally at home singing in English, French, Spanish, Portuguese, Lingala, and Kikongo.
Since forming his Los Angeles-based band Makina Loca in 1990, Lemvo has refined his craft and vision, raising his joyous voice with strength, singing songs that celebrate life, and most importantly, inspiring his audiences to let loose and dance away their worries.
About San Jose Taiko
San Jose Taiko has been mesmerizing audiences with the powerful, spellbinding, and propulsive sounds of the taiko. Inspired by traditional Japanese drumming, its performers express the beauty and harmony of the human spirit through the voice of the taiko as they strive to create new dimensions in Asian American movement and music.
San Jose Taiko has broadened this historical art form into a style that joins the traditional rhythms of Japanese drumming with other world rhythms, including African, Balinese, Brazilian, Latin, and jazz, bridging many styles, while still resonating with the Asian soul in America.
Ricardo Lemvo & Makina Loca
Record Label: Mopiato Music
Release Date: March 2007