Hearing Old and New Music

For the past decade artist Leticia Rodriguez has strived to come to a place where she could release in a creative way her aunt’s music. Her aunt was the acclaimed Latin artist Eva Garza who sang boleros in the 1950s.

Rodriguez has been interviewed on Public Radio International’s “The World” and her tour schedule is quickly growing. Rodriguez talks about her musical roots and her love of music. In this short interview she shares something special about music in album history with our readers.

You have listened to a wide range of Latin music before releasing your debut album featuring music from across the Americas. But if you were alone on a desert island which five CDs would you most want with you and why?
Wow, challenging question!
The first three albums listed are from family members. I chose this particular album of Eva’s because I am a huge fan of Augustín Lara, and also have good stories from my tia about the friendship that Eva had with him. Augustín Lara was one of the world’s most internationally recognized composers during a period where there was no Internet. Like Bach, the Beatles or Maria Callas his music is timeless, classic, soulful, both musically and lyrically. Finally, Eva Garza is the perfect collaborator to perform these compositions with her vocal tonality, musicality and feeling.
The other albums are from my brothers, and are folk/indie albums. They are part of my history, but they are also captivating and timeless, again both musically and lyrically. They are original and personal and I will listen to these for the rest of my life.

Eva Garza Interpreta a Lara (Muzart Discos)

The True Cross by David Rodriguez (Deja Disc)

River Through the Sun by Philip Rodriguez (Jaguar Night Records)

The last two albums are about the present and future. The album Gracias by Omara Portuondo won a Grammy award in 2009 for Best Tropical Album. It has an authenticity that marks it for a lifetime. The music has traditional songs, mainly Cuban, performed and arranged by world recognized musicians. It possesses spirit, amazing compositions, and is sung by someone with a long history of a hard, yet rich life. Formerly a dancer, Omara Portuondo, now in her eighties, is a one-of-a-kind talent.

Calling All Dawns by Christopher Tin won a Grammy award in 2011 for Best Classical Crossover Album. He also won an award [for] the song, Baba Yetu, on the same album for Best Instrumental Arrangement Accompanying Vocalists. A blend of languages with wonderful vocals, world music rhythms and a unified vision through the arrangement of the album, it fills me with hope and wonder each time I hear it.

- Jupiter Index Web Magazine