Sergio Mendes Readies New Album in Time for Summer
By Grace Bastidas | 04/26/2010 - 12:12

As summer slowly approaches, I'm dreaming of sipping caipirinhas on a white-sand beach while listening to bossa nova. And who better to start building a warm weather soundtrack with than Sergio Mendes? The Rio de Janeiro native has been churning out the musical equivalent of sunshine since the late 1950's. And as one of the forefathers of bossa nova, the legendary pianist-arranger still has the touch.
 


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Mexican Singer Carla Morrison Drops New Single
By Grace Bastidas | 04/21/2010 - 12:00

Carla Morrison is more than just a girl with a guitar. Her yearning vocals tug at the heartstrings with lyrics about love and longing and a sound that straddles the line between country and ranchera without conforming to either style. The Mexican singer came on the scene as the front-woman of the Phoenix-based band Babaluca a few years ago before going solo in 2009.

Here she is performing “Pajarito del Amor”:


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Sound Check: Juan Luis Guerra Turns Japanese. Well, Sort Of.
By Grace Bastidas | 04/08/2010 - 17:00

Bachata king Juan Luis Guerra is back, and he’s speaking Japanese. The first single from his upcoming eleventh studio album (out June 8 on Capitol Latin) is called “Bachata En Fukuoka. It was inspired by the legendary singer’s trip to Japan last year, during which he visited the capital of Tokyo and Fukuoka, a city on the northern shore of the island of Kyushu that is considered to be the birthplace of Japanese civilization.


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Sound Check New Music Alert: Introducing Torreblanca
By Grace Bastidas | 03/31/2010 - 17:00

Torreblanca is a group fronted by Mexico native Juan Manuel Torreblanca, whom you may recognize as part of Natalia Lafourcade’s band. A singer, lyricist, illustrator and multi-instrumentalist, he describes himself as a “borderline zombie half-baked pancake” on his Twitter page.


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Listen: Christina Aguilera's New Single "Not Myself Tonight"
By Mariela Rosario | 03/31/2010 - 09:36

Christina Aguilera just dropped the first single off her recently announced new album Bionic. The funky track, called "Not Myself Tonight," is definitely a high energy departure from anything she's ever sounded like before. It's pretty much guaranteed to be the go-to dance anthem bumping in clubs around the country this spring.


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Sound Check: Ozomatli Continue to Break Boundaries with their Fifth Album
By Grace Bastidas | 03/30/2010 - 15:30

Los Angeles–based act Ozomatli have been combining music and politics ever since forming 15 years ago. And as cultural ambassadors to the U.S., the band's multi-culti members have traveled around the world spreading their message while entertaining listeners with a specially-made blend of hip-hop, funk, rock, reggae and Latin rhythms. Their upcoming fifth album, Fire Away (out April 20; Mercer Street Records/Downtown Records), continues this tradition with a couple of socially-conscious songs that will make you listen (and hopefully, think).


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Christina Aguilera Dishes Deets on Her New Album "Bionic"
By Mariela Rosario | 03/26/2010 - 15:36

Christina Aguilera recently released some exciting details surrounding her first studio album in four years. The album, entitled Bionic, is her first collection of new work since the birth of her son, Max Liron, with music producer hubby Jordan Bratman.


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Sound Check: Idol in the Making Gustavo Galindo Prepares his Big Debut
By Grace Bastidas | 03/22/2010 - 12:00

Though we have a long-standing love affair with Colombian rockero Juanes, lately our hearts have been beating for another guitar-clutching singer/songwriter. His name is Gustavo Galindo and last week he turned the South by Southwest music conference in Austin, Texas into a veritable smooch-fest with his romantic ballads. Billboard.com immediately dubbed him an “idol-to-watch” after his performance on Wednesday night.


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Sound Check: Getting to Know Spain’s Amaral
By Grace Bastidas | 03/16/2010 - 20:00

Vocalist Eva Amaral teamed up with guitarist Juan Aguirre when they were students to form the pop-rock act Amaral in 1998. Since then, they’ve sold over two million records so perhaps it’s time we get to know the dynamic duo behind one of Spain’s hottest bands. I caught up with them a few days before their showcase at South by Southwest in Austin, Texas this week and here’s what they had to say.

Are you ready to conquer the North American market?


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Sound Check: Jorge Drexler Stops and Smells the Roses
By Grace Bastidas | 03/09/2010 - 14:00

Uruguayan singer/songwriter Jorge Drexler lets destiny lead the way. The title of his latest album, Amar La Trama (out March 16; Warner Music), translates to “Love the Plot,” referring to the celestial plot that charts our course.

Recorded live in a television studio in front of an audience, the 12 songs on the CD were created without any electronic instruments or sampling. The result is an organic sound that’s perfect listening music on a relaxed Sunday afternoon.


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