Viento Callejero
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Viento Callejero

Los Angeles, California, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2013

Los Angeles, California, United States
Established on Jan, 2013
Band Latin Psychedelic

Calendar

This band hasn't logged any future gigs

Nov
01
Viento Callejero @ Dia De los Muertos, El Sereno Community Arts

California, USA

California, USA

Oct
29
Viento Callejero @ 29 Dia De Los Muertos Celebration @ UCR

Riverside, California, USA

Riverside, California, USA

Oct
29
Viento Callejero @ Private Show

California, USA

California, USA

Music

Press


A couple of weeks ago I was in New York’s Central Park catching La Santa Cecilia’s show while sharing some beers and chatting with an old colleague when, all of a sudden, we noticed a sizable chunk of the crowd standing up and starting to dance. La Santa Cecilia was playing one of their cumbias.

“You can’t deny the power of cumbia,” my colleague stated. And it’s true. Cumbia has that democratic appeal and almost unexplainable hypnotic power that makes everybody stand up and dance. Bands that combine multiple Latin genres in their repertoire know this very well: they see the faces in the crowd, down there, waiting impatiently for the next cumbia.

Now that I’m listening to Viento Callejero’s eponymous, independent debut album, I’m wondering if that was at least part of the motivation behind Gloria Estrada’s jumping ship right before the crucial major label signing of La Santa Cecilia to start a cumbia band. Why waste time playing all that other stuff when the main reason people come to see you is to dance cumbia, right?

That’s what Viento Callejero essentially is: a power trio that plays straight up, stripped down, classic cumbia. No hi-brow pretentiousness. No hipsterish ironic twists. No sampled electronic loops. No attempts at reinventing the wheel. Just plain soulful, old-school, cumbia joints that will get any party going in milliseconds.

Estrada found two perfect teammates for this operation in Chicano Batman’s Gabriel Villa and Tokeson’s Federico Zuniga and the invaluable help of a bunch of guests providing vocals (Quetzal’s Martha González, Las Cafeteras’ Leah Gallegos, Héctor Guerra). With the even more invaluable help of their fans who crowdfunded the recording, the trio self-released this modest, but at the same time epic, declaration of love to the lingua franca of Latin American music, cumbia.

There is however a modern approach to the genre. Even though many of their songs are covers of decades-old standards, the sound they magically managed to create with just three musicians is very current. While golden age cumbia was epitomized by the big band format, this trio with just bass, guitar, and drums transmits the illusion of a much larger line up.

Their influences come mainly from Colombia—obviously—but also from Peru, where psychedelic jungle cumbia, also known as chicha, successfully replaced the accordion and brass sections of traditional cumbia orchestras with surf-rock guitar and effects pedals.

In just nine songs, plus a couple of low-fi skits, Viento Callejero proves that they’re a lot more than just a cumbia cover band and they have potential to become an international cumbia powerhouse. Plenty of their tracks (“Tolu,” “La Burrita”) are ready to be dropped in your DJ set (a vinyl pressing would do justice to this album), are and ripe for remixing, too. But it’s in their chichadelic joints, like the up-tempo “Yolanda,” where the dexterity of Gloria Estrada shines in such an unprecedented way that it suddenly makes sense why she would abandon a successful band to start this project. You can’t deny the power of cumbia. - Remezcla


Growing up messing around on the streets in Boyle Heights, guitarist Gloria Estrada remembers her mother saying "Como eres callejera!" An accomplished musician, Estrada later found herself at a crossroads after leaving the rapidly up-and-coming band La Santa Cecilia. Assembling the pieces of her new trio Viento Callejero in the aftermath almost didn't happen. "At the time, I really thought I was going to leave music altogether," Estrada says. "I was trying to take a break." Luckily for cumbia lovers, she kept on strumming!
It's not that Estrada had much of a choice. Musicians kept blowing up her phone inquiring about gigs. One day, bassist Federico Zuniga left San Jose and his cumbia group Tokeson for Los Angeles and hit up Estrada to see what was active on the scene. Instead of pointing him somewhere else, the guitarist teamed up with him. She had a new idea in mind.

"I've always wanted to resurrect these old classic cumbias by Lucho Bermudez and the big band orchestra sound," Estrada says. They found a Colombiano in Chicano Batman drummer Gabriel Villa to round out their trio. With all the pieces in place, the stripped down urban cumbia experiment started just last year. "We are out a lot and bringing a party," Estrada says of the "street" side of the band name. "At the same time, it's a breeze that soothes. We are the vientos that match the callejeros."

"We're not just playing regular cumbia," Estrada says. "We're definitely giving it a funk, hip-hop, psychedelic, rock and chica flavor." A recording studio served as a laboratory for the concoction. Viento Callejero started out putting together a three-song demo, before becoming more ambitious with their collaborative outlook.

Martha Gonzalez (Quetzal), Leah Gallegos (Las Cafeteras), Eddika Organista (El Haru Kuroi) joined as a guest musicians and vocalists. As a demo turned into a full length album, the band turned to Kickstarter to recuperate the debt. A litmus test of their name recognition and buzz, the campaign exceeded its goal and the album was released this year.

On the self-titled debut, Estrada's stellar guitar skills are back in action. Zuniga and Villa are lockstep as a rhythm section. Viento Callejero achieves its aims kicking off the 11-track effort by re-imagining Bermudez's brass heavy "Tolu" with a stripped down sound that captures the spirit of the original, all with a twinge of psychedelia and rock.

"We're small but we're packing a punch," Estrada says. "We're trying to create a musical comradery that I feel has been lacking." And that includes the audience. Viento Callejero promises good times for all who come to the annual Música en Movimiento outdoor fest in downtown SanTana this weekend.

"We're going to bring the party! Cumbia is like Latin two-step. You can't help but start moving even if you aren't a great dancer," Estrada says. "Cumbia has that seduction behind it. It's hypnotic!" - OC Weekly


Discography


Viento Callejero
1.  Tolu
2.  Kalaiopia
3.  La Burrita feat. Eddika Organista
4.  Turbo Max
5.  Espliff
6.  Cari単ito feat. Leah Gallegos
7.  Yolanda
8.  Arroz Con Coco feat. Hector Guerra
9.  Jenny
10.  El Patuleco feat. Martha Gonzalez
11.  Antes de Amanecer
http://itunes.apple.com/au/artist/vientocallejero/id892688773?ign-mpt=uo%3D4

Photos

Bio

THE BAND

VIENTO CALLEJERO (Street Breeze) is a Los Angeles based Urban style Cumbia trio that formed in 2013. The group is composed of three talented musicians, Gloria Estrada on guitar, Federico Zuniga on bass, and Gabriel Villa on drums.  The group has taken a unique approach to their musical endeavor by inviting and featuring a different guest vocalist for every performance.  Thus creating a one-of-a-kind musical experience every time.

Together they bring a fresh approach to urban tropical music stripping it down to feature its rawest elements. With Cumbia making a resurgence, artists have been re-mixing and re-interpreting the Classic Cumbias in dance halls all over the world. VIENTO CALLEJERO represents the newest incarnation of the movement in Los Angeles, breaking down the rhythmic and melodic pulse of Cumbia Colombiana, Son Montuno, Merengue, Reggae, Dance Hall, Funk, and Rock to create a fresh sound with a new twist that is infectious to the listeners ears, hips, and feet. 

THE ALBUM:

VIENTO CALLEJERO’S first recording represents the artistic collaboration the trio was inspired to create.  The band was greatly influenced by artists Lucho Bermudez, Orquesta Sonora Curro, Los Corraleros de Majagual, Peregoyo y su Combo Vacana and wanted to pay tribute to these artists by recreating classic songs.  The fusing together of organic and electronic components gave the songs a newer and more contemporary sound.  The trio’s relative upbringing and exposure to urban music such as Rock, Soul, Hip-Hop, Reggae, & Tropical were also key components in how each song was developed.  It was also important for the band to collaborate with other independent artists and to showcase the talent and musical camaraderie of the Latin Indie Music scene.

Viento Callejero's self titled album was recorded at Bedrock Studios with Producer/Engineer Eugene Toale (Kanye, Raekwon).  The record consists of both original material and Classic Cumbia songs interpreted in a modern flavor with the help of guest musicians Martha Gonzalez (Quetzal), Eddika Organista (El Haru Kuroi), Leah Gallegos (Las Cafeteras), Edgar Modesto (Buyepongo), and Hector Guerra (Pachamama Crew).   

BAND MEMBERS:

Gloria Estrada - Guitar

- From Boyle Heights Los Angeles

- Former Guitarist of La Santa Cecilia 

- Collaborated or played with: Maria del Pilar, Carla Morrison, Irene Diaz, David Garza, Perrozompopo, Fernanda Ulibarri, Susana Baca, Quetzal, Finger Dancers, Entre Mujeres

- Graduated USC Thornton School of Music

  

Gabriel Villa - Drums

- From Cali Colombia

- Current member of Chicano Batman

- Studied drums at the "Conservatoire de Region" (Toulouse-France) studied drums with Mr. Carlos E. Perez Ferrin (Colombia) and Mr. Joseph Fillatreau (France)

-Played and participated with bands Tangamandapio-1999, Chrysalid-2002

 

Federico Zuniga - Bass

- From East San José California

- Has collaborated or played with: Sistema Bomb, Tokeson, Los Hijos de José, La Colectiva,

 De Rompe y Raja, Son De Madera, and Patricio Hidalgo y El AfroJarocho, Hector Guerra

-Studied Music under Artemio Posadas, Felipe Pumarada (former musical director of Eva Ayllón), and Félix “liche” Oseguera (Musical director of Chuchumbe and Relicario)       

Band Members