Las Cafeteras brings vibrant Latin music to Whitefish

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The Whitefish Theatre Company is delighted to present Las Cafeteras, a dynamic ensemble of musicians known for their bold fusion of traditional Latin American folk rhythms with an urban attitude. A family-friendly concert not to miss, Las Cafeteras will perform their captivating show full of music, dance and fun, one night only at 7:30 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 19 at the O’Shaughnessy Center in Whitefish.

Las Cafeteras hails from east Los Angeles and are known for remixing traditional Son Jarocho style music from Veracruz, Mexico, with Afro-Caribbean, folk, hip-hop and pop sounds. Las Cafeteras brings this vibrant musical fusion to life with eclectic world instruments like the West African marimbol and cajón, Spanish stringed jaranas and requintos, and Latin American quijada, or donkey jawbone. As part of their edgy, cross-genre sound, Las Cafeteras integrates inspiring lyrics as well as zapateado dancing, a form of Latin American tap marked by rhythmic stomping of the feet. The BBC has praised Las Cafeteras for creating “urgent, relevant music” and their infectious live performances have been called “magnetic” by the Los Angeles Times.

Las Cafeteras formed in 2008 with the purpose of documenting the histories of their neighborhoods through music. They started as students of the Eastside Café, a Zapatista-inspired community space in east L.A. where they were influenced by the culture, storytelling and poetic music of Son Jarocho, the centuries-old tradition from the Mexican state of Veracruz. Their Afro-Mexican beats, rhythms and rhymes — sung in English and Spanish — deliver inspiring lyrics and stories about a community seeking love, joy and justice in the concrete jungle of Los Angeles.

With their uplifting spirit, Las Cafeteras uses music as a vehicle to build bridges among different cultures and communities, demonstrating that while the struggle for peace and equality is a serious matter, it doesn’t mean that you can’t have a good time along the way.

Over the past decade, Las Cafeteras have demonstrated that in art as in life, borders are meant to be crossed. They have collaborated with folk/indie darlings Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros, Mexican icons Cafe Tacuba, Caifanes, and Lila Downs, Los Angeles legends Ozomatli, Colombian pop star Juanes, singer and songwriter John Legend, hip hop activist Talib Kweli, and the Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra.

Las Cafeteras has performed at high-profile venues such as the Lincoln Center in New York, Montreal Jazz Fest, Art Basel in Miami, WOMAD in the United Kingdom, and SXSW in Austin Texas.

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