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Denver, Colorado, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2019

Denver, Colorado, United States
Established on Jan, 2019
Solo Pop Latin




"Lolita Fights Fascism With Joyful Pop in "Toda Mi Gente""

Look away from the White House and you’ll find a pop-cultural renaissance happening in the United States. Cultures are mixing joyfully, imaginations know no borders and social justice is a priority.

It starts at the top, where today’s biggest artists are quick to soapbox about progressive politics; for performers like Lady Gaga and Jay-Z, doing so has even become integral to their brands. At the same time, the wall between English- and Spanish-language music has been crumbling. See the Billboard charts since the 2016 election: J. Balvin, Bad Bunny, Cardi B and even Justin Bieber all made hit songs written in Spanish or Spanglish.

The renaissance has even inspired a new generation of ambitious pop musicians here in Denver, including Lolita Castañeda, a little-known bilingual artist who performs as Lolita and has collaborated with the pop hip-hop group 2MX2.

At age 26, she’s giving a solo career a chance. She started laying the groundwork early last year, writing and recording songs in a studio basement with the producer DMD and Owen Trujillo of 2MX2.

“DMD had created this awesome sound, this awesome music,” Castañeda says. “I was so excited, because he wanted me to write to it. By the end of three days, we'd recorded three amazing songs.”

That was a big deal for an emerging artist who's played solo just once, in a New York City art gallery where her friend was exhibiting work.

“After those three days in the studio, I thought, ‘Wow, I have three finished songs. I can release these tomorrow,’” she recalls. “Turns out they weren’t finished.”

It took her most of 2018 to mix and master the tracks. “I’ve always had this weird relationship with making music,” she confesses. “It’s always been a painful process, because I beat myself up about it.”

Now that the pieces are finally wrapped, she’s proud of her work and the sound her team created. On January 28, she'll drop “Toda Mi Gente,” her first solo track, which grabs the listener from its opening bars.

The bilingual song is politically radical — the kind of catchy music that has gone mainstream as of late. The title nods to J. Balvin and Willy William’s “Mi Gente,” a border-crossing banger that blasted across the United States in the summer of 2017.

But unlike “Mi Gente,” Castañeda’s song is explicitly anti-fascist, a response to everything from police brutality to gun violence, which, as she tells it, could all be avoided if people learned to face their anger. “Spread your wings like a butterfly,” she sings. “Even with the world on fire.”

The song weaponizes joy through pop music and puts it to use in the fight for social justice.

“It’s really hard to stay positive in such a chaotic environment sometimes,” says Castañeda, noting that doing so is especially challenging for high school students.

She should know. Castañeda and 2MX2 joined the indie hip-hop act Flobots on a 2015 tour of Colorado schools through Detour, a program of the nonprofit Music District in Fort Collins that gives bands the chance to perform and lead workshops for marginalized communities. Through that and other classes she has visited, she has seen how racist rhetoric, mass shootings and violent cops impact young people who live in fear. She hopes her music can act as a balm of sorts.

“I wanted to make sure that they knew there was strength in our reactions and the way that we handled situations. I want to see less of a fear reaction and more of a ‘We need to get our stuff together,’” she explains. “We want peace, and it’s something we can accomplish.”

Castañeda, who grew up bilingual and had teachers chastise her for speaking Spanish in school, opts to write her music in both English and Spanish, a move that would have been bold two decades ago for an aspiring pop artist, but one she acknowledges is in line with today's trends.

“Since I speak both languages, I feel like I have this tool kit that I get to pull from,” she says.

Through her workshops with Flobots, she encountered many Spanish-speaking and bilingual youth, and they connected with her music.

“I did notice the sparkle in their eyes when they heard me speak in Spanish or heard lyrics in Spanish,” she explains. “They don’t have guests that come in and speak to them in Spanish or sing to them in Spanish.”

“Toda Mi Gente” is inviting pop, the kind of music that doesn’t require understanding the words to inspire people to dance. Music, she explains, transcends language barriers and brings communities together.

“A lot of the time I’ll listen to a song that’s not in my language, and I can still feel the message. Art is one of the most powerful, efficient and elegant ways to communicate with the world. It’s universal,” she says.

And she plans to use that universal language to spread her message.

“Pop music gets millions of listeners,” she says. “Why not use music as a platform to talk about these issues and make social-justice conversations a priority?” - Denver Westword

"Lolita Finds Confidence Through Poetry and Music"

Denver’s music scene, much like the rest of the world, has been increasingly receptive to Latin music and artists during the last decade. On a global scale, artists like Bad Bunny and J Balvin are leading the charge in popularizing Latin music in America and Europe. On a smaller scale, there are local Latin artists that are contributing to the culture in important ways. Lolita — a rising star in Denver’s Latin music scene — is one such artist. Her deep love for poetry, self-awareness and social justice synthesize in her music, and makes her a force to reckon with.

Growing up in Denver’s Five Points neighborhood, Lolita — whose real name is Lolita Mendoza Castañeda — was exposed to music at a young age. Some of her earliest memories are of sunrises accompanied by a Mexican-morning soundtrack curated by her father, who would play his favorite Mexican tunes on his guitar every morning. These moments are dear to Castañeda, who remembers being inspired by the Mexican folk music that shaped her father, which he shared with her throughout her childhood.

At a young age, her love of music was outweighed by her passion for poetry, which has been a crucial part of her life for as long as she can remember. In her teen years, she began transitioning from poetry to songwriting. She explained, “In high school, I started to ditch a class to write poetry. Eventually, that kind of started turning into rapping. I started using beats and it became this songwriting thing.”

Although she originally planned to go to college to study creative writing, her intuition took over when she sat down to officially declare her major at CU Denver.

“Because the poetry was so important to me, when I graduated [high school], I went with my mentor to try to get into school at CU Denver. We went to the admin office and they asked me what I wanted to major in. To my surprise and her surprise, I just said ‘music.’ It just kind of came out and we both looked at each other like, ‘that just happened.’ It was great, and I just went with the flow of it. I was like, this happened for a reason.”

While pursuing a music business degree at CU Denver, she crossed paths with Owen Trujillo — a songwriter originally from Zacatecas, Mexico, with a natural inclination for rapping. Trujillo, a founding member of the Denver-based Latin hip-hop group 2MX2, was impressed with Castañeda’s songwriting abilities, and the two formed a friendship rooted in musical collaboration and mutual admiration that eventually led to Castañeda joining 2MX2, who she still performs with today.

In 2015, The Flobots — a Colorado-based band best known for their smash single, “Handlebars” — invited 2MX2 and Castañeda to perform and lead workshops for marginalized communities in the Colorado public school system. Castañeda remembers this experience fondly, although, at times, she struggled to accept her new role as a musical mentor for the youth. Recalling that time in her career, she explained:

“I was still in a very vulnerable place with my art. I didn’t believe in myself yet. So being on that tour with such amazing groups, 2MX2 and The Flobots, I was just like, wow, how did this happen? How can I shine amongst so many shiny things and shiny people to the point where I would put glitter on my face, to literally shine. But I love that because it was part of my journey. To move through that space and to realize eventually that all I could do is be myself. And in being myself, I’m already winning because there is nobody who is me and there is nobody who is you.”

As a Latina woman living in America, being confident in herself hasn’t always been easy. Growing up, she remembers being shamed for speaking Spanish around her peers. Although American society has largely evolved to be more accepting of other cultures, Latin-American youth often still struggle to feel accepted among their peers. Thankfully, music has a special ability to bridge that cultural gap.

The sound of music is universal. Each note conveys emotion and empathy. That’s the beauty of music: you don’t have to understand the lyrics to understand the message. During one of her visits to a Colorado public school during her tour with the Flobots and 2MX2, she experienced music’s connective tissue first hand.

“There were times where the music would literally bring the whole room together. There was one moment on that tour where we were sitting in a circle and I was doing my best to try to connect with these people. I was like, you know what, let me think of a song that brought me some connection when I was young, and I just started singing, ‘this little light of mine, I’m gonna let it shine,’ and everybody joined in. I had goosebumps. It was such a simple moment yet we all could get together and sing the lyrics to that.”

Moments like this gave Castañeda confidence that she was on the right path and helped her overcome the imposter syndrome she’d struggled with during the beginning of her musical career.

That tour was seven years ago. Since then, she’s built quite a reputation among Denver’s Latin music community, receiving praise from local Latin-indie band The Mañanas and opening for iconic Denver bands like iZCALLi and Los Mocochetes. Unfortunately, she doesn’t always get the recognition she deserves as people often confuse her for a girlfriend of the band instead of an artist.

This is a common problem in the music industry — casting feminine artists aside in favor of praising their masculine counterparts on stage, often completely neglecting the major artistic contributions of female singers, bass players and songwriters.

Additionally, Castañeda feels the pressure to live up to the reputation Latin women have in North America — strong and ever-present.

“In our culture, the Latina women have always been seen as very strong, like they can handle a lot. Growing up, a lot of us were told ‘you’re strong, you’re the woman here. You can do all of this. You can handle all of this. Why? Because your mom did it and your grandma did it and we’ve all done it.’ So we hear this and people just assume this about Latina women. Yeah, they are very strong. They can handle it. They can cook, they can clean, they can go work, they can come back and do the same thing and take care of you and take care of themselves. But sometimes we forget that the self-care part is super important too.”

Recently, Lolita has been paying special attention to her own self-care essentials, which is evident on her most recent single “Sober Without Your Love,” a catchy dance-pop reggaeton record that sees Lolita confronting her emotions about a fading relationship. After putting up a front for her lover’s sake, she finally decided to air out her feelings and end the romance that was no longer healthy for her.

“Heartbreak is tough and I think a lot of us go through it and sometimes we go through it alone. We don’t talk about it out loud. We just deal with it in our own way. Sometimes it’s so painful that we don’t necessarily deal with it. We just allow time to happen. For me, ‘Sober Without Your Love’ was like revisiting those places and the heartbreaks that I’ve gone through and the beauty that came out of those experiences.”

Although Lolita is no stranger to love songs and heartbreak, “Sober Without Your Love” is a slight deviation from the politically-charged music she has released over the years, mainly “Todo Mi Gente” and 2MX2’s “Piraña,” two Spanish anthems that speak on gun violence and police brutality.

At the end of the day, Castañeda is more than a Latina musician. She’s more than the political music she makes, more than the heartbreaks she’s experienced and more than the strong woman society expects her to be. Yes, she is all of those things. But she is also a human being, who, just like everyone else, experiences highs and lows, occasional feelings of doubt and the euphoric highs of love in all forms — self-love, romantic love and love for her community.

All photography by Jason Carncross - Logan Sasser

"Lolita Puts Us In A Trance With Her New Single, “I’m Not Waiting”"

Floating in from the Astral Realm, singer-songwriter and alluring recording artist Lolita showers us in emotional release with her latest single, "I'm Not Waiting."

Lolita took the music industry by the horns in 2018 when she first tore up the ground with her ethereal yet powerful releases. Known for combining various compositional elements to form her unique and authentic sound, Lolita has now amassed hundreds of thousands of streams from loyal listeners who are certain that she will be the next big act.

The relentless recording artist recently swooned our speakers with her latest haunting yet powerful hit, "I'm Not Waiting." The song is incredibly emotional but takes on an empowering undertone where Lolita makes clear that she's not waiting for anyone to come back around and attempt to mend her broken heart. We also get to know Lolita's dense sonic stylings through this dynamic new tune.

Without further ado, "I'm Not Waiting" begins with a soft and chilling keyboard melody that's met with a heavy mid-tempo drum breakdown. As we drift into the spooky and atmospheric first verse, Lolita makes her serene vocal appearance and drenches us in the utmost emotion and tenderness as she continues to sing of someone who's now dead to her.

Lolita doesn't hold anything back in this dynamic single, and boosting that statement are the powerful sonics that blast with growling sub-bass, hefty drum breaks, and an eerie, celestial sonic background. We love how composed Lolita is in this single, and we can only expect future releases to capture the same resilience and emotion that's she's mastered oh so well.

Pack up your things and get going to Lolita's new empowering yet emotional single, "I'm Not Waiting," now available on all streaming platforms.

Welcome to BuzzMusic, Lolita. We are very impressed with the emotion and overall dense atmosphere you've delivered in "I'm Not Waiting." What inspired your vulnerable and honest lyrical content in this single?

Early on in my music career, I decided to be as authentic and honest as possible. As a result, I dream about whales a lot. I felt a familiar, almost past-life connection to the whale I encountered in one of my dreams. I was sitting on my porch as the whale was approaching. It was hanging its head and carried draining energy. In my head, I thought, "not him again…" Nonetheless, the whale and I cuddled on my porch. In the dream that Inspired "I'm Not Waiting," I wake up in a shipwreck. In a frenzy, as I try to find the exit from the ship, I see three white dogs and intuitively follow them down a flight of stairs to the first level of the ship. I run to the exit. People are waiting around by the door. As I get closer to the door, I notice that an orca is blocking it. I ask, "Can you make way so that I can leave this ship?" the orca replies, "You're not allowed to exit this ship for the rest of your life." I leave the interpretation to the readers and listeners. But the dream made quite an impact on me. And I was also healing from an emotional wound at the time.

Speaking of your emotional lyrics in "I'm Not Waiting," how long did it take to write such conceptual, vulnerable, and cathartic words? What was that process like?

The writing process for "I'm Not Waiting" was short and potent. My producer DMD gave me some music, and one day while I was at the studio, I got in the vocal booth and started to vibe. The music brought out a lot of emotion in me, and I remembered my dream. I also remembered the feeling when I saw the whale walking towards me in the other dream. It all hit me at once; what I was going through, the music, the dreams, and it started to come together at that moment.

Regarding the dynamic electronic production within "I'm Not Waiting," why did you want to give the song this powerful and heavy sonic edge?

I'll let my producer answer this question. I wanted to give this track a heavy sonic edge because beats with a heavy sonic edge are fucking tight! I also wanted to capture the emotion and pain in the lyrics. I wanted the listener to feel a beat that best represented the emotion and lyrics of this song.

How does "I'm Not Waiting" stand out from your other five releases? What makes this song different from the rest?

I don't think I've ever been this vulnerable. I've channeled anger, disappointment, optimism, pride, etcetera in other songs. I've used my voice to speak about social and political issues, but for "I'm Not Waiting," I let my guard down completely, and I allowed my soul & psyche to say what it needed to say unfiltered openly and publicly. This song feels wholly & utterly me.

What's next for you?

I'll be releasing an animated music video for "I'm Not Waiting" on my YouTube Channel. I'm collaborating with a local animator & illustrator by the name of Blake Sass, they will be animating my dream & I'm very excited about that! It will be out around the end of March or early April. I also have a show coming up in Denver, Colorado, on April 30th. Besides that, definitely more music! - Buzz Music


  1. Toda Mi Gente
  2. Loca Por Ti
  3. 5 Year Thhing
  4. Toda Mi Gente (Remix)
  5. Pirana
  6. Sober Without Your Love
  7. I'm Not Waiting
  8. La Más Chingona
  9. Corazón Bombea
  10. Chi-Chi Suelta
  11. Fresa
  12. Spoiled Rotten



Lolita is a Rising Mexican-American Latin Pop Reggaeton artist who burst onto the streaming scene in 2019. Lolita combines a variety of compositional elements to form her unique and authentic sound. To date, Lolita has 12 singles in her online discography, amassing hundreds of thousands of streams on Spotify alone. Lolita studied music at the University of Colorado & graduated with a Bachelors Degree in Music Business & Entertainment Industry Studies in the fall of 2015. She performs her music in numerous venues & festivals in her home state of Colorado including Ophelias Electric Soapbox, Levitt Pavilion, Buell Theatre, Taste of Colorado, The UMS Festival, Westword Music Showcase, & more. You can stay up to date on her latest music, videos, events, & more by following her on social media @lolitaworldwide & visiting her website at

Band Members