|Chente, sad that the Latin Grammys suck so much|
Over a decade ago, I wrote an op-ed piece for what was called Pacific News Service but is now New American Media bemoaning how pathetic the Latin Grammys were due to their lack of Mexican music. "The definers of Latin culture," I wrote then, "have decided that the most popular Latin music genre in the United States isn't worthy of promotion because it might lead people to believe that Latinos are poor and culturally backward, not slick and 'with it.'"
Back then, the Latin Grammys had just weathered a 2000 boycott by major Mexican music labels protesting the invisibility of canción mexicana in the event. Flash-forward 11 years later, and little has improved. Sure, scheduled to perform are Mexican recording artists like Calibre 50 (one of those groups that combine accordions with tubas that drive us traditionalists crazy but is what the kids like nowadays) with Banda Carnaval; Newport Beach's own Mariachi Sol de Mexico ( problematic in their own, Balboa Bay Club-patronizing, way) teamed up with ranchera feminist Paquita la del Barrio; and Latin alternative songstress Natalia Lafourcade no doubt performing something off her so-so album of covers from the Agustín Lara songbook. But this year's iteration--November 21 in Las Vegas, in a ceremony anticipated by only by NBC/ABC/FOX/CNN/Insert-name-of-major-American-media-network-giving-token-attention-to-Latinos Latino reporters seeking to score free tickets--proves the Latin Grammys will continue to be what it's always been: an anti-Mexican sham of a show.More »