A very Latin affair: more acts you need to catch at the 2015 Darling Harbour Fiesta

With the sun out (ish) and the spring weather upon us, it comes as no great surprise that the organisers of the Darling Harbour Fiesta hold it during that time of the year between ¡ay dios mio, hace frío! and ¡Que calor! (I’m looking at you, Christmastime).  The Fiesta is full of music, dancing, food and a whole lot of latin culture thrown in.  There are some amazing acts to follow this weekend (runs until Sunday 11th October) – I’ve made a list of the 4 acts you need to see at the Darling Harbour Fiesta 2015, but naturally, there are definitely more than that, so here are more acts you need to catch at the 2015 Darling Harbour Fiesta: 

OSCAR JIMENEZ (THE SUDAMERICAN ROCKERS)

From the Darling Harbour Fiesta site: Led by Oscar Jimenez, this powerful all-star music collective will transport you to the alternative Latin music scene from Mexico to Argentina, Colombia, Cuba, Chile and Brazil. Featuring members from Watussi, Son Veneno, Cumbiamuffin, Madre Monte, Oz Locos and C-Major, these talented artists pay tribute to the sounds of Latino legends such as Manu Chao, Café Tacvba, Aterciopelados, Fabulosos Cadillacs, and Orishas as well as showcasing original material created in Oz.

How long have you been playing this genre of music for audiences? 

I grew up playing alternative latin rock in Colombia for around 20 years. It was the genre of a whole generation during the 90’s when latin musicians needed to hear something different from what the radio was playing.

What do you love about the music you perform, and when did you discover your love for it?

Since I was little (about 8 years old), I was taken to parties by my parents and music was always present. The rock influences came in my teenage years when a whole movement of rock was coming out, and I started playing latin ska punk with some friends in the neighbourhood.

What response do you get from people who are unfamiliar with your music?

Most of our concerts have connected powerfully to our audience – we are singing songs that are very popular for many new generations in South America. They end up dancing and chanting!

Get down with Oscar Jimenez and the Sudamerican Rockers

Get down with Oscar Jimenez and the Sudamerican Rockers

 

You walk into a bar full of people and the place is DEAD!  The manager asks you to liven up the place with your music.  What do you play to get the party started, and why?

No vibe is ever dead. It’s always sleeping behind the hearts of people, you just have to know how to reach them and make them vibrate with your music. Latin music and percussion has a power of its own and it has imprinted in many cultures.

What sets you apart from other acts in your genre of music? 

We are a collective created to unify the music scene. Not wanting to set ourselves apart from everything, but trying to connect our public with the music that inspired us.

When people see you perform, what do you want them to take away from your performance?

Music is now an experience, and it’s been very important for me to involve the crowd and make them feel part of the music. I want them to leave feeling they where part of the show no matter what language they speak.

Oscar Jimenez and the Sudamerican Rockers will be playing on Saturday, 10th October from 7.30pm-8.30pm at the Beco Latino, Palm Grove area of Darling Harbour

VICTOR VALDES MARIACHI BAND 

From the Darling Harbour Fiesta site: Mexican multi-instrumentalist Victor Valdes is a man of many talents—harp player, ballet director and Mexican folk superstar. He has performed in 25 countries, including over 20 performances at the Sydney Opera House.  He’s played with everyone from Angus & Julia Stone and Los Lobos to Jimmy Barnes and Aloe Blacc and has appeared at Bluesfest, Woodford Folk Festival and WOMADelaide. 

How long have you been playing this genre of music for audiences? 

Since 1975 – that is 40 years!

What do you love about the music you perform, and when did you discover your love for it?

When I was about 9 year old I did my first performance for Mexican National TV and my family was watching.  When I came back home I was “The Artist” – from that moment, I knew Entertainment was the way to go.  It opened up the opportunity to travel around the world, performing at some of the greatest venues and celebrations,  as well many International Music Festivals, and allowed me to represent my cultural heritage.  It has been a beautiful journey!

Victor Valdes Mariachi Band

Victor Valdes Mariachi Band

What response do you get from people who are unfamiliar with your music?

Every time I’m performing I’m so lucky to see new faces and get some uplifting comments about my music and energy! And what can I say about my groupies (they know what they want)!

You walk into a bar full of people and the place is DEAD!  The manager asks you to liven up the place with your music.  What do you play to get the party started, and why?

It is plenty of great music from Latin America.  But when I have that mission to accomplish, I have to play La Bamba.  Why?  Because everybody knows it!

What sets you apart from other acts in your genre of music? 

The good fortune to study Mexican and Latin American music with Alberto de La Rosa, and to be a part of the most respected folkloric music band in Mexico called Tlen Huicani from the University of Veracruz, Mexico.

In Australia I had the privilege to been on stage with the King of Rock, Jimmy Barnes, Los Lobos, Aloe Blacc, Angus and Julia Stone, Maya Jupiter and also be part of the Sydney World Music Chamber Orchestra directed by Richard Petkovic.

When people see you perform, what do you want them to take away from your performance?

My message of LOVE!

The Victor Valdes Mariachi Band will play on Saturday, 10th October from 1pm-2pm around Palm Grove, Urban Stream, in Cockle Bay Wharf

ARMANDITO Y SU TROVASON

From the Darling Harbour Fiesta site: On stage, Armandito y Su Trovason is characterised by a high energy, distinctively Cuban sound that blends traditional Cuban music with gifted improvisation. They spontaneously adapt the music to suit the audience, which makes it impossible not to become involved. Their repertoire includes the most popular, authentic rhythms of Cuba, ranging from son to guaracha, cha cha cha, bolero and rumba to Buena Vista Social Club style music.

I wasn’t able to get the skinny on Armandito y su Trovason’s experiences and love of music, but they did pass on this for us al to enjoy.  Uhhh, yep.  Amaaaazing! :)

Armandito y su Trovason will be playing on Saturday, 10th October from 6.45pm-7.45pm at the Tropicana at Harbourside Amphitheatre in Darling Harbour.

 

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