The Blend of Latin American Rock with Folk Music of its Countries of Origin.
by Rolando Terrazas
The history of Latin American rock can be traced back to the decade of the 1960s, when many bands were doing song covers of North American bands. Some artists made translations of such songs into Spanish. The most notable example from this decade was Wayne Cochran’s last kiss, interpreted by Los Apsons. The Spanish version of the song is called “El Ultimo Beso” which has the exact same meaning of the English title. Unlike many songs that have been translated from English into Spanish, this piece maintains the same words as the original English version.
During the decade of the 70’s, cover rock songs from English into Spanish were still popular, but some bands were already experimenting with original lyrics in Spanish, such as Nuevo Mexico.
It was until the 80’s when Spanish rock had massive popularity with the rise of bands like Soda Stereo from Argentina, and Caifanes from Mexico.
Skipping over the decades, I want to comment on the song “De una Vez” by Nunca Jamas. This band is from the state of Sonora, Mexico, where Banda music is amongst the most popular genres of regional Mexican music. Nunca Jamas, being a rock band, decided to do something very creative with this song. They brought in a Banda, which is very much comprised of the instruments used in a typical marching band, and blended in those instruments with a powerful and solid Rock sound. The song even has a bridge, where the wind instruments play solo, then the rock band comes in along with the vocals to do the last chorus.
This is by far, one of the most creative songs that I’ve heard in the Spanish and Latin rock genres.