Saturday, April 18, 2015

Day 1 of Fiesta de la Flor

Thousands of fans from all around the world attended the Fiesta de la Flor music festival this past Friday night.

This event celebrated late Tejano icon Selena, on the week where she would have turned 44 if she were still alive today.

One fan in attendance came all the way from Hawaii for this special gathering. Pedro Haro grew up in the island of Maui but now resides in Oahu.

"I was growing up in Hawaii and there is not a lot of Mexican culture over there," Haro said. "When I watched the [Selena] movie it was like, 'Wow I didn't realize this [about the culture].' Because we didn't grow up around it. It made me feel good about my culture and all of those things. She embodies all those positive things about Latino culture."

The festival opened up with Steven James & The Jaded, of Corpus Christi. The indie rock band played some material from their latest album Baby L.A.

Next up was Las Fenix of Houston. This Tejano group consists of the Rodriguez sisters — Nadia, Lesli, Adela, Berna and Anahi.

"Selena is one of a kind," Nadia told me shortly before the event. "She is one in a million, really. Definitely growing up, as sisters, we listened to her music. It's one of the reasons why we did get involved in music."

The quintet played many cumbias throughout their set, including Fito Olivares' classic "Juana La Cubana". They also played some standard rancheras and their versions of popular Selena songs like "Baile Esta Cumbia" and "Bidi Bidi Bom Bom". Before presenting their covers they would say they were "con el sabor de Las Fenix" ("with the flavor of Las Fenix"). They stole the show with their dynamic performance.

Los Lobos were the final act of the evening. They slowed the tempo down early on but warmed up as they moved forward. Some of the songs they performed included "The Neighborhood", "Chuco's Cumbia", "Come On, Let's Go", "Yo Canto", and "Sabor A Mi".

As Los Lobos introduced special guests bajo-sexto maestro Max Baca and his nephew, accordionist Josh Baca, the festival hosts announced that they would be cutting the evening short due to weather concerns. The musicians on stage asked if they could at least play one more song, which ended up being "La Bamba". The Baca duo shined on their respective solos, as lightning lit up the sky and the event came to an early close.

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