Dennis Gonzalez Schools Us On Ramón Ayala

We've started poking around in locals' iTunes, iPods, Spotify playlists, CD players, cassette decks, turntables and brains with one question in mind: What are you listening to? We don't even care if it's good, we just want to know what the music community has been obsessing over, playing on repeat, picking apart, hating or turning people on to. Sometimes, these things even all happen at once.

Up first, Yells At Eels' Dennis Gonzalez tells us about the obscure slice of música norteña that's currently occupying his brain, and how he's going to cover it:

"'Un Rinconcito en el Cielo' is a song that is the jewel in the crown of música norteña, the northern Mexican phenomenon based on button accordion and bajo sexto. In '79-'80, it was flying off the Mexican/Texan airwaves, a romantic but swinging little piece of close dancing played by the ubiquitous Ramón Ayala and his conjunto group Los Bravos Del Norte. As a child, my parents tried to keep me from the music played in the bar just down the block from my boyhood church in Mercedes, Texas.

"Now, with the Mexican music incarnation of Yells At Eels, which we call Banda de Brujos, I'm trying to come to terms with just how we are going to play this song onstage, especially because I am the singer. No way to match Los Bravos' Eliseo Robles and his vocals... but it doesn't much matter. I'm still going to listen to this for my own enjoyment. Excuse me, I gotta get up and dance now..."

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Audra Schroeder
Contact: Audra Schroeder