Music del Dia


Del muy esperado album de Gustavo Cerati, Fuerza Natural, este es el primer sencillo, Deja Vu. Disfrutenlo.

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Music del Dia- Bajofondo

ENGLISH

Bajofondo Tango Club, then shortened to just Bajofondo , is a collective of eight musicians from Uruguay and Argentina, who among them is Gustavo Santaolalla, two-time Academy Award winning film composer (credits include Babel, Brokeback Mountain, and The Motorcycle Diaries) and music producer (Café Tacuba, Molotov, among others). In the late 90’s Santaolalla started experimenting with tango and electronica; but Santaolalla is no newcomer to the fusion of sounds, in the 70’s he formed a band in Argentina, Arco Iris, in which he fused rock with traditional Latin American music, considered by then a pioneer in Latin America. So he began dealing with the traditional elements of tango, such as piano, violin, and the bandoneón, a type of accordion, traditional instrument in Argentina and Uruguay. Then came electronic music, samplers, drum and bass. But when they started seeing that their style went beyond electrotango, they took off Tango Club, and proclaimed their music as music of Rio de la Plata, which includes tango, rock, hip hop, among others. This is an example of a continuing tradition in music, instead of taking out the old and bringing in the new, they include it, they embrace it, it’s part of their culture. They’re presenting this traditional music and introducing it to new generations, keeping it relevant. A rather vanguard move on their part, an innovate band that is now internationally known, they were awarded a Latin Grammy in 2003 and played at Coachella this year. A band definitely worth listening to.

Songs to hear: Montserrat, Grand Guignol, El Mareo (feat. Gustavo Cerati), and No Pregunto Cuantos Son.

ESPANOL

Bajofondo Tango Club, después solo Bajofondo es un colectivo de ocho músicos de Uruguay y Argentina, que entre ellos esta el compositor y productor, Gustavo Santaolalla, reconocido por la música de las películas Amores Perros, Babel, Brokeback Mountain, entre otras y las ultimas dos galardonadas con el Oscar. Tambien ha sido productor de bandas como Café Tacuba y Molotov, pero en los 90’s empieza experimentar con los sonidos del tango y la electrónica. Santaolalla no es ningún principiante cuando se trata de la fusión músical; en los 70’s formo la banda Arco Iris, considerada como pionera en la fusión de la música  tradicional latinoamericana y el rock. Asi que mezclan los elementos tradicionales del tango, como el violin, el piano y el bandoneón, un instrumento típico de Argentina y Uruguay, como un acordion. Luego viene la música electrónica, samplers, drum and bass. Pero viendo que su estilo estaba expandiendo mas alla del tango, se dieron que no solo era  electrotango sino que otros sonidos como el rock, el hip hop, y mas el sonido del Rio de la Plata. Esto es un ejemplo de una tradición en la música que continua, fusionar lo viejo con lo nuevo, y no excluirlo. Muestra que la música tradicional de Latinoamerica sigue siendo relevante y de alguna manera quieren introducirlo a nuevas  generaciones para que no sea olvidada. Bajofondo, hoy es una de las bandas vanguardistas de Latinoamerica, reconocida mundialmente, por los Grammys Latinos en el 2003, y acaba de tocar en Coachella en abril. Escuchenlos.

Canciones a escuchar: Montserrat, Grand Guignol, El Mareo (con Gustavo Cerati), y No Pregunto Cuantos Son.

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Deficit

Y Tu Mama Tambien conoce a El Laberinto de la Soledad. Los taglines dicen donde falta justicia sobra dinero, pero falta nmuchas cosas. En una fiesta donde pasa de todo, Deficit es la opera prima del actor mexicano Gael Garcia Bernal, pelicula cual no duro mucho en taquillera y no tuvo suficiente distribucion, pero que su mensaje tenia mucho que decirnos sobre la clase politica mexicana y las clases altas. Detras de una fiesta de fin de semana en su casa de Tepoztan, Morelos, la pelicula nos da un vistazo a la relacion entre clases sociales. En este pais, siempre hay un deficit, esa palabra temida con la que siempre hemos crecido. En esta pelicula los personajes , la mayoria sufren deficits emocionales, sobre todo Cristobal  que por medio de el somos testigos a una clase politica que poco a poco esta decayendo.

Cristobal es hijo de un politico corrupto de alto nivel que esta en el extranjero huyendo de las autoridades, ya saben, la misma historia. Ve que todos sus amigos estan saliendo adelante y el por alguna razon aun no sabe que quiere hacer con su vida. Pero bien que sabe que no quiere seguir los pasos de su padre.

Atra vez de una fiesta, en la que se divide entre los amigos de Cristobal y de su hermana Elisa. Fresas contra hippies. La diferencia entre sus amigos es aparente, y representa a las divisiones que la misma sociedad se impone asi misma. Si no pueden vivir entre ellos, como van a vivir con ellos mismos, con otros grupos, clases.  Entre otras cosas, esta pelicula tiene enganos, peleas entre la servidumbre, ahora si que sexo, drogas y rock and roll, una ventana hacia la vida de los ricos y famosos.

Pero no todo es de colores, como dice  Cristobal, “todo se esta yendo a la verga”  igual que el pais. Cristobal se da cuenta que la fiesta se arruino tras todo lo que le ha pasado ese dia, ve que su mundo se esta derrumbando, igual que su familia. El hecho de que desvia a su novia para que no llegue a la casa y tenga mas tiempo con su amiga argentina tiene que ver con el engano e hipocrecia que existe en nuestro pais que no nos déja progresar con el fin de que saquen provecho.

Una excelente película que muestra las realidades sociales a las que se enfrenta Mexico entre las clases sociales, vale la pena ver.

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Movie del Dia- Su Excelenica

ESPANOL

Los paises colorados (los comunistas), los verdes (los capitalistas) y los de dulce (los no alineados). Como los tamales. Solo asi se podria explicar la situacion de ese entonces. Los dos potencias lideres del mundo, Estados Unidos y la Union Sovietica se enfrentaban en una Guerra fria y ambos estaban tratando de ganar aliados, especialmente estos paises de dulce, los paises descolonizados. La pelicula Cantinflas, Su Excelencia presenta esto y otros  temas de la politica internacional, algo asi como La Guerra Fria para Principiantes, o como las ediciones americanas de For Dummies. En esta escena, hasta no los explican con palitos, el consejero del embajador de la Republica de Los Cocos.

Mas que esto, Su Excelencia se burla de la burocracia. Varias de las peliculas de Cantinflas siempre se caracterizaban por esto, ya sea de la iglesia, de los maestros, de los diputados y los policias. En una escena en particular, todos estan en una cena official y le informan al embajador que hay un golpe de estado y cambian de embajador porque vuelven a ocurrir mas golpes de estado hasta que llega a ser Lopitos, (el personaje que interpreta Cantinflas) embajador. Esto es un ejemplo de la inestabilidad y golpes de estados que sucedian en ese tiempo hasta que llega a tomar poder el proletariado y empiezan a recomendar a sus familiares y amigos a puestos importantes sin que sepan nada de politica internacional, historia que continua hast ahoy. Es suficiente ejemplo con que el Presidente Obama haya asignado a las embajadas de Inglaterra, Francia y Japon a los que mas dinero recaudaron dinero para su campana, Louis Susman, Charles Rifkin y John Roos todos con poca o ninguna experiencia en relaciones internacionales.

Una vez en poder, ambos paises, Dolaronia y Pepeslavia, (los verdes y los colorados)tartan de convencer a Lopitos que les den su voto en la asamble (al estilo ONU)que decidira el destino de la humanidad. Es curioso notar que durante la pelicula si cantinflea, habla mucho y no dice nada, durante el ultimo discurso en la asamblea se expresa tan eloquente de algo importante, diciendo muchas verdades de los dos poderes. Habla de la sociedad, como hemos avanzado cientificamente e intelectualmente somos gigantes, pero moralmente somos unos pigmeos. Habla a favor y en contra de los dos paises, no por sus ideales, pero los procedimientos con que las imponen. Nos dice que hay que respetar esas ideas, pero como los colorados, no hay que oprimir a la gente por pensar de otra forma. Y a los verdes les dice que hay que ofrecer oportunidades equitativas. Pero como pueden garantizar cosas materials como carros, cuando todavia hay gente descalza.  Habla de los pros y contras de ambos sistemas. Alguien dijo alguna vez, no estare de acuerdo con lo que dices, pero defenderia hasta la muerte tu derecho a decirlo. Si solo nuestros politicos vieran esta pelicula y captaran el mensaje. O alomejor ya la vieron, pero se hacen gueyes.  O que piensan?  Vean la pelicula por ustedes mismos.

ENGLISH

The red (communists) countries, the green (capitalists) and sweet (nonaligned). Like tamales. Only a film like this one could explain the situation during the Cold War as funny as simple as Cantinflas. T=The two leading super powers, USA and the USSR were at war, and both were trying to gain allies as these new decolonized countries were emerging. Su Excelencia presents this and other themes like foreign affairs, bureaccracy in a type of Cold War for Dummies kind of way.

More than this, Su Excelencia makes fun of the burecrocay. Many Cantinflas’ movies make fun of establishments, like the church, teachers, politicians and police. In one scen, the embassy is at a state dinner and the ambassador to Los Cocos is notified that he has been discharged from his position due to a coup. This happens a few times until Cantinflas’ character is ambassador. This not only makes fun of the political instability that many countries faced at that time, but also the eventual rise of the proliterait and politicians recommending their friends to important positions, like the recent nominations for ambassardors to England, France and Japan. With neither of them with sufficient experience in foreign affairs.

Once in power, both countries, Dolaronia and Pepeslavia try to convince Lopitos to give them his vote at the international assembly a la UN, where the fate of the world will be decided. One thing I noted is that while throughout the movie, Cantinflas speaks a lot without saying anything, cantinflear as he is known to do, but at the speech in front of the assembly, he expresses himself eloquently. He talks about important issues. For and against both systems.  An excellent movie, I recommend it. Or what do you think?

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BINACOM essay

I just came back from the BINACOM Encuentro at the University of San Diego. Thank you Kristin Moran and all the people that came up to me to comment on my essay. I presented an essay on the border, politics and the problems that both the United States and Mexico faced. Overall, I had a good response from the audience. Here’s the transcript to the essay.

Eduardo Santacruz

BINACOM Encuentro at USD

April 17, 2009

The Problem on the Other Side

Mike Vargas from Orson Welles 1958 film, Touch of Evil said, “all border towns bring out the worst in a country.”That sounds about right, considering the state of our region currently. We are neither Mexico nor the United States but a combination of both. I quote from Gloria Anzaldua’s Borderlands they are “where people of different races occupy the same territory, where under, lower, middle and upper classes touch, where the space between two individuals shrink with intimacy.” That intimacy, cooperation, at least with any results that benefit our regions I have yet to see. Like Anzaldua, many of us grew up between two cultures, trying to define our own identity, but we are now with awareness and consciousness of what happens in both countries. Residents of these borderlands grow up with two languages, two cultures, two traditions, two perspectives, two identities.

But what stands out to me the most is how close we are physically, and how far we have distanced ourselves from each other, how we have divided ourselves by a border, a wall, and our differences. That contradiction that a border divides our statuses as first and third world countries. We have isolated ourselves to handle our own problems. The United States is the leading superpower, that is a fact of life and we have to learn to accept that but how interested is the US in the rest of the world, they cannot afford to isolate themselves. With new technologies, globalization, we have to stay united. I remember Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu’s last film, Babel and if that film taught me anything is that we are all connected somehow, whether it is across the street, across the border, or across the world.

And now with this current economic crisis, we have more reason to stay connected.

I realize that both countries are codependent. We have always depended on each other, supply and demand. The United States needs labor and Mexico provides it. It’s all a question of economics. Mexico needs us as much as we need them. Throughout the years we have established agreements that facilitate collaboration between our two countries, like guest worker programs, and the NAFTA. We have been able to outsource jobs to Mexico thanks to the establishment of the maquiladoras.

We talk about creating community across borders, how can we do that? Acknowledge these people that leave their home in order for a better life that their country won’t provide them, talk about alienation. There’s no easy solution for immigration, we can’t let just anyone in, not with the threat of terrorism at large. There are rules and limits that we have to abide by in order to protect our border. It’s illogical that we keep open borders, Mexico protect their border with Guatemala. Now we can’t solve all each others problems but we are responsible to the problems that we are somehow directly or indirectly affected by. That level of interest determines our involvement. But we can at least collaborate and reach an agreement that works for both countries.

But at least here in the border, we can start with organized crime and drug trafficking. I quote from Fund for Peace, “a state that is failing has several attributes. One of the most common is the loss of physical control of its territory or a monopoly on the legitimate use of force. Other attributes of state failure include the erosion of legitimate authority to make collective decisions, an inability to provide reasonable public services, and the inability to interact with other states as a full member of the international community.”

That seems to be both our countries at the moment to some degree. In order to be able to attack the problem, we must accept it, like twelve step program. I remember this news story in Mexico that said that violence was only occurring in three states of Mexico. Not only is this denial a big irresponsibility from our authorities, but they are misinforming, lying to us to keep the social order. We are both affected. Mexico supplies the drugs; the United States creates the demand for them.

What can we do about it? Decriminalize drugs; tobacco kills more people than car crashes. How come drugs are illegal, because it’s a problem of coexistence, of living with each other, not only are drugs morally wrong, but they’re not socially acceptable as tobacco. Fast food and alcohol are bad for you, but we don’t prohibit them, we remember how that turned out in the 1920’s, same thing is happening with the drugs. So we either cut down on consumption or we decriminalize drugs, I know both countries have proposed it, but we have to do it the right way, by educating people on proper usage, limits.

Then the United States traffics guns and just adds up to the problem. We are both to blame. But the United States isn’t the cause, they’re just a symptom, the real causes are the economy, capitalism and globalization. I don’t intend to promote communism, as both political and economic systems have their upsides and downsides. But organized crime is a result of a capitalist economy and the maldistribution of wealth. People want more, and there are people out there willing to get it anyway they can.

But why don’t governments do anything to control the crime? It has gotten out of hand and now the drug cartels are at war. All these border towns are no longer safe, nobody wants to go there, or live there because no one will do anything to stop the violence. But what do we expect, when the police in Mexico are underpaid, ill motivated and clueless, and in most cases, corrupt. No longer is any border town or any city in Mexico for that matter safe to walk at any time of the day or without the fear of a criminal incident waiting for you around the corner. Kidnappings, shootings, murders, we hear of these incidents on the news. And it’s the first headline on a newspaper or news broadcast. A police was killed, a businessman was kidnapped, a shooting in front of a department store in plain daylight.

Going back to the news coverage, bad news are always first, especially in Mexican news, it’s on the front page. When I turn on the news, all I see are bad news, because tragedy sells, it brings back the viewer. Rarely do I see good news, I don’t remember the last time I saw a story about a man that just did his job, I mean is nothing good happening around us? Instead I get to see that 100 were killed so far in the last week, 200 in the last month 500 in the year for example. How many today? 15, that’s normal.

Then there’s another thing; we’ve grown used to violence, impervious to it and see it as part of our daily lives. That’s not right. But the news is also a cause for this terrorism. They create a fear on society. I watch the news, now I’m scared to go to Tijuana. Business has gone down, restaurants have closed and again the economy especially the service sector has been affected. On this side of the border, we hear from American news about the ongoing violence south of the border. The United States Department of State sends out travel alerts to not go to Mexico, and if we do take precautions. It’s common sense, and sometimes it’s just hype, and there’s always been violence, and we’re as likely to be victims of organized crimes as any city in the United States.

To those who partner with organized crime, they now who they are, and you and I know who they are. There’s always been corruption on both sides of the border. What do we do? The question is what the authorities should do. Both Mexican and American authorities must work together to solve these problems. The problem of organized crime and all its related activities such as drug trafficking and the street violence. I watch TV spots from the Mexican government stating they’ve confiscated x amount of drugs, captured several drug traffickers but I see no results. There is still violence, there’s still poverty, and drugs are still on the streets. If we really want results, both countries must work together, setting borders aside, with an open mind and all parties, both Mexican and American have to work together if we want to progress.

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Music del Dia

With such an ambivalent title, Enrique Bunbury’s song “La Senorita Hermafrodita” (Miss Hermaphrodite) is a worthy complement to Michel Foucalt’s edition of  “Heculine Barbin:Being the Recently Discovered Memoirs of a Nineteenth Century French Hermaphrodite.” The song was first released in his 2004 album “El Viaje a Ninguna Parte” and then part of his tour, with a very appropriate title Freak Show. The Freak Show consisted of five concerts in Spain in what was a type of vaudevillian travelling circus, with a Mexican luchadores, and a cabaret / jazz sound, all under a circus tent. The song seems fitting to the performance and as an exposition on the weird and abnormal. As far as the lyrics of the song, they evoke a certain ambiguity , between two worlds, two sexes, not revealing enough about her. She’s also described as un animal cuadrúpedo y palmípedo, con instinto mamífero (a four legged ,web-footed mammal) the only animal that comes to mind is a platypus, which means she identifies with the animal for its strange appearance and being looked down upon by society, (Miss Hermaphrodite, not the platypus). Here’s a link to the lyrics.

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Music del Dia

http://www.rock.com.ar/letras/1/1924.shtml  – a link to the lyrics

The song for today is “Salir de la Melancolia” from Argentine band Seru Giran, from their 1981 album Peperina, written by Charly Garcia, a pillar of Argentine rock. The first 15 seconds of the song is a dialogue from the Spanish dubbed version of Gilda (1946) directed by Charles Vidor. It is a dialogue between Gilda, played by Rita Hayworth and Johnny Farrell, played by Glenn Ford. This is after Gilda sings “Put the Blame on Mame” and Johnny approaches Gilda filled with jealousy.

Johnny: como te atreviste.

Gilda: y estaras muy felíz Johnny, no es lógico que sólo lo sepas tú, ya todos saben que al poderoso Johnny Farrel le engañaron y que su esposa es una…(then Gilda receives a tremendous slap in the face from Johnny)

I thing juxtaposing the film with this song is more than appropriate because both deal with the themes of jealousy and obsession. Johnny Farrell is obsessed with Gilda but hides his fears and insecurities with his jealousy. It represents the relationship between the object and possesion (symbol of power?) It is proof of the extent men will go when in a relationship with a woman as beautiful as Gilda and everyone is looking at  her.

Or what do you think?

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