Raíz XicanX is a new multi-genre musical album by Juan and Armando Tejeda that spans the breadth of San Antonio history with its fusion of indigenous cantos, corridos, conjunto, Tejano blues, country, jazz, bolero, rock, and cumbia. With songs that were written just after WWII and rooted in a musical journey that spans decades, this album by Juan and Armando (primos hermanos from San Antonio, Texas) bring forward and blend the indigenous Xicanx and Mexicanx experience into a danceable, enjoyable musical voyage that is as innovative as it is historically relevant.
Scroll below to listen to the music!
The official album release party is this Saturday, November 17, 2018, from 3-6pm at the Guadalupe Theater (1301 Guadalupe St., San Antonio, Texas). As per the official press release, “The Tardeada, which is co-sponsored and presented by the Guadalupe Cultural Arts Center, is free and open to the community and will feature a special show and live performance of Raíz XicanX by Juan & Armando Tejeda, CD signing and sales, botanas and a few kegs of cold cerveza.“
For over 30 years, Juan and Armando have been performing a unique duet style of traditional and progressive Tejano Conjunto music featuring the button accordion and bajo sexto. Raíz XicanX is their first jointly-produced recording that is “a concept CD of 17 love songs to and from la Raza.” In 2015, they began recording the album but Armando suffered a major health crisis that paused production for over a year. In late 2017, they were able to finish recording and in 2018 the album was released.
Juan has been playing accordion since his childhood, and even played with the infamous Santiago Jimenez Jr. y su Conjunto. As a student at UT Austin during the early-to-mid 70s, he was deeply involved in the Chicano Civil Rights Movement when he formed Conjunto Aztlan and became jefe segundo of Xinachtli, a traditional Mexica-Azteca conchero dance group.
He went on to eventually direct the Xicano Music Program at the Guadalupe Cultural Arts Center from 1980-1998 and also continued to perform with Armando at events ranging from family gatherings to plays at the Teatro Guadalupe. They have since performed private and public concerts and conducted formal seminars and presentations on Tejano Conjunto music in Texas and beyond. Juan and Armando recorded on the first self-titled Conjunto Aztlan CD in 1998, and Armando has performed and recorded with such Conjunto music greats as Valerio Longoria, Jesse Borrego Jr., Santiago Jimenez Jr., Chalito Johnson y Los Paisanos, among others.
According to the official press release: “The music on this Raíz XicanX CD reflects who we are as a people: Native Americans/Xicanxs, the Indigenous/Mexican people within the U.S. It documents our native history and the racist, brutally violent and genocidal colonization of these lands, first at the hands of the invading Spanish Catholic conquistadores, then Mexico, Texas and the U.S. We didn’t cross these borders, as the saying goes, but definitely the governments and borders crossed us. At the same time, our people and our music have resisted, mixed, survived, adapted and transcended these borders by creating a uniquely American culture and musical mestizaje with original ensembles, such as the Conjunto Tejano, that sing the songs and tell the stories of our Raza XicanX.”
This is a great album and piece of living history that should be a part of every Xicanx musical collection. Please support this work and be sure to preview a sample of the tracks below or attend the release party this Saturday.
To purchase the hard copy CD via PayPal, click here or on the Buy Now button below. Shipping & Handling is included in the cost:
For more information, please visit: https://juantejeda.net/