I have two pairs of tickets to giveaway to Sunday night’s, Eastside Story extravaganza, at the Mayan. Mayer Hawthorne, Bilal, et. al, celebrate the music of Etta James, James Brown and a dozen other soul greats. Good times had by all. E-mail [email protected] with the name of your favorite Etta James song if you want tickets . Winners will be picked at random whim.
Below the jump, a note from Eric Coleman offering context for the evening.
“Soul music is the emotional center of all American popular music. It is the music of our mothers and fathers, older brothers and sisters, community mentors and teachers, it is the music of our memory collective, across generations and across racial divides. Soul music developed out of folk music styles and sub-styles, like the blues and gospel, to become one of the most dominant forces in popular culture during the 1960s. Soul became a platform for furthering the civil rights movement while simultaneously playing a crucial role in Chicano History. Although the popularity of Soul has waned over the years, it’s impact and influence can still be heard, especially in Los Angeles.
From the late 1950s to present day, doo-wop and sweet soul has been the unofficial soundtrack of the Chicano experience. Coming out of a landscape of racial inequality, Chicanos found that these sentimental R&B ballads spoke volumes. Art Laboe’s “Oldies But Goodies” radio shows became a hub. California Chicanos loyally dedicated songs through the bad and the good, breakups and weddings, prison bids and coming-out parties, funerals and celebrations.
Through extensive compilations like Lowrider Music and East Side Story, these anthems have been kept alive. The goal of East Side Story at The Mayan with a lot of help from Miguel Atwood-Ferguson is to bridge generation gaps and celebrate the knowledge and awareness that… “Music does last forever….”
For most Angelinos, Soul music was not only heard in the house, it was the music played in the streets with the help of the Lowrider car culture. Lowriding originated in the 1930s and blossomed in Southwestern Mexican and Black communities during the post-war prosperity of the ’50s. Today, the lowriding scene is diverse with many different cultures, many different vehicle makes and visual styles. The power of music is undeniable, and because of the rich history and unity of the lowrider culture, it has been passed down for generations, disproving the theory that “nothing lasts forever.”