As the old saying goes, nothing is
sacred. This is especially true in art, and music in particular, where
musicians blend influences and styles in an increasingly complex meld of sounds
and cultural signifiers. The Internet and its vast array of musical platforms
has only served to bring this melting pot to a more intense boil, where a 16-year-old
in Beirut can draw from the same catalog as his teenage counterpart in
click to enlarge
Courtesy of Indy Film Fest
Mateo is the second of four films in Indy Film Fest's Rock + Reel series.
With this in mind, the concept of a Caucasian musician from
California transforming into a mariachi singer while serving a stint in prison
for robbery proves plausible. This is the storyline behind Mateo, a documentary in Indy Film Fest's Rock + Reel
series, which showcases works about music and is screened in front of
audiences at The
White Rabbit Cabaret.
In the years since Matthew Stoneman emerged from prison, he has established a cult
following in the United States and Japan as a "gringo mariachi" performer. Mateo, the debut film from director
Aaron Naar, follows Stoneman
as he attempts to record his first album while living in Havana, Cuba. In the film, Stoneman is
depicted as one having a complex personality and whose checkered past and vices
threaten to derail his success as a musician. As evidence, listen to Stoneman and Naar's interview
on WNYC's Soundcheck podcast from earlier this summer.
In short, don't miss this flick if you have ever wondered what Ry Cooder's career might've looked like if he never left Cuba after working with Buena Vista Social Club.
After attending the screening of Pulp: A Film about Life, Death &
Supermarkets, the kickoff of Rock + Reel, I can attest that the experience
of watching a movie about music on a stage and sound system worthy of Indy's
finest independent musicians and touring acts is an opportunity worth seizing. Prior
to each screening, attendees are treated to music curated by Musical Family
Rogers, as well as complementary
snacks. The staff at White Rabbit also tailors the drink specials to reflect
themes from the movie, which is an awesome touch. Tickets for Mateo are free, but space is limited.
Watch the clip below, and register for the screening via Eventbrite.
Here's a clip from Mateo that shows the highs and lows of being a gringo mariachi:
Rob Peoni is a freelance writer with a passion for underappreciated rock 'n' roll, local business and culture. The stories he tells are typically found where those interests intersect. The hours away from the dim glow of his computer screen are often spent scouring the Circle City for live music.