Friday, July 11, 2014

Radio Waves

Posted By on Fri, Jul 11, 2014 at 6:00 AM

When I talk of being born and raised in Monterrey, Mexico, people don't usually picture me growing up listening to Motown music. But it's true, because Chicago was my mother's birthplace and where she grew up. So we grooved to Smokey Robinson long before I even knew what a cumbia was.

Soon enough I would learn. Music in Mexico is inescapable; it is everywhere. On the streets, pouring out of kitchen windows, riding the bus with you in the form of a young child with a small guitar. My most cherished memories of Monterrey are of the parties and dancing with boys. No party ended before every single person danced to Pesado or El Poder del Norte.

It is no wonder music can be so meaningful to people. It can take us to a moment in a distant past where the same song was playing. It can mentally transport us from one country to another.

With this in mind, I bring you my first Sky Blue Window blog, which is a guide to Indianapolis' Spanish radio stations. But please take note: It must be used wisely. For if you close your eyes and swoon for too long you might find yourself in a town plazita, sipping on a michelada.

click to enlarge Titled "Radio Dreams" - ILLUSTRATION BY JENNIFER DELGADILLO
  • Illustration by Jennifer Delgadillo
  • Titled "Radio Dreams"

Radio Latina 107.1 FM is my favorite station, because it plays regional Mexican music, including Banda, Cumbia and Ranchera. Ranchera music in particular has a very organic sound to it. The guitars are often accompanied by raw vocals that unapologetically sing about feelings, using analogies and metaphors. You might have heard a Mexican native break into "grito" in the middle of a Ranchera (Aaaaaaah ha haHAyeeeeee!) -- overcome with emotion; pride, pain, nostalgia. Cumbia music tends to be more playful and often employs the accordion as a means to get you to the dance floor -- to twist and turn, holding your dance partner's hands and shoulders. That way when the music slows down, you can just tenderly rest your head on your partner's shoulder. Banda music is a spectacle of brass and percussion instruments that sounds like saucy polka. Any song covered in the banda style is a good song in my book. I like to tune in to this station when I am feeling especially nostalgic; when I am cooking, while driving around unfamiliar areas, and in the month of September, right around Mexico's Independence Day.

Pescador Radio 810 AM is Indianapolis' Spanish Christian Music Station. While I am not a listener, I have to admit that in between changing radio stations I have had flashbacks to sitting through mass back in Mexico, watching my sister make funny faces at me from the other side of the church pew, and my mother pinching my leg so I wouldn't laugh.

EXITOS 1590 AM Tuning in to 1590 on the AM dial in the summer takes me back to the nights at the kermesse (festival); hundreds of plastic balloons carried by a single man, cotton candy and churros, knockoff Barbies, and loteria. It is a contemporary music station that stays current with Spanish Pop music, while also throwing Latin America's favorite pop oldies into the mix. You can run into anything ranging from saccharine ballads with lots of heartfelt keyboard, to fun merengue/pop fusions, alternative rock and Bachata. This radio station is by far the most eclectic one. Dancing while listening to this station is guaranteed.

And there you have it -- a primer to Indy's Mexican radio stations and an invitation to explore some music and dance that might be new to you. Enjoy!

  • Pin It
  • Favorite
  • Email

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Speaking of...

  • Let It Be

    Ben responds to a recent piece on millennials' musical tastes, and makes a plea to be curious, not judgmental.
    • Jan 11, 2016
  • Artfelt Gifts

    Instead of buying more “stuff” for others, Ben shares the best places in Indy for thoughtful presents that make meaningful connections.
    • Jan 9, 2016
  • Best of the Rest: Dec. 4, 2015

    Take a look at the other arts and entertainment stories that made news in and around Indy this week.
    • Dec 4, 2015
  • More »

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Readers also liked…

  • Well-Endowed Artists

    Jennifer draws Seinfeld-esque parallels to artists' financial challenges with education, but offers easy ways to help.
    • Mar 2, 2016
  • Positive Impressions

    Ben chats with IMA’s artist-in-residence about introducing the process of woodblock printmaking to the masses.
    • Jan 10, 2016

About The Author

Jennifer Delgadillo

Jennifer Delgadillo

Bio:
Jennifer Delgadillo is an artist who lives on the Near Eastside of Indianapolis where she enjoys making art, writing, reading magazines, and drinking wine with her husband and her neighbors. Her work is eclectic and ranges from doing diabetes research to cooking brunch on Sundays at Tlaolli. She writes regularly... more

More by Jennifer Delgadillo

  • Well-Endowed Artists

    Jennifer draws Seinfeld-esque parallels to artists' financial challenges with education, but offers easy ways to help.
    • Mar 2, 2016
  • Happy Holidays

    The aesthetics of this holiday season offers plenty of reasons to celebrate.
    • Dec 22, 2015
  • Sweet 15

    Jennifer learns about the local quinceañera culture -- how time and place changes the traditions of this celebration of young women.
    • Nov 26, 2015
  • More »

Latest in Sky Blue Blog

  • The Nice Things

    Ben has enjoyed his opportunity to give notice to some of Indy’s 'nice things' with Sky Blue Window readers. He hopes you’ll find and share them too.
    • Mar 9, 2016
  • A Gray Sky-onara

    Dan looks back at some of his most memorable blogs at Sky Blue Window.
    • Mar 8, 2016
  • Well-Endowed Artists

    Jennifer draws Seinfeld-esque parallels to artists' financial challenges with education, but offers easy ways to help.
    • Mar 2, 2016
  • More »
© 2017 CICF
Twitter
Facebook
Privacy Policy
Contact Us:
P: 317.634.2423   F: 317.684.0943
info@skybluewindow.org
Central Indiana Community Foundation
615 N. Alabama St. #119
Indianapolis, Indiana 46204-1431
Sky Blue Window is presented by:

Website powered by Foundation