Y La Bamba
Y La Bamba has been many things, but at the heart of it is singer-songwriter Luz Elena Mendoza’s inquisitive sense of self. Their fifth record, Mujeres, carries on the Portland-based band’s affinity for spiritual contemplation, but goes a step further in telling a story with a full emotional spectrum. Coming off Ojos Del Sol, one of NPR’s Top 50 Albums of 2016, Mujeres exhibits the scope of Mendoza’s artistic voice like never before. “Soy como soy,” Mendoza says, and that declaration is the bold— even political— statement that positions Mujeres to be Y La Bamba’s most unbridled offering yet.
The record exists in the post-2016 landscape of a national identity crisis, and Mendoza explores what it means to be a Mexican American woman by leading us through places we are afraid to go. Mujeresventures in to the discomfort of the stories we tell ourselves. Those of our past, our futures. We all have these stories somewhere inside of us, but with Y La Bamba, Mendoza forges new narratives from old stories of heritage and family, tracing history while forging modern chicana feminism.
“Music is an extension of everything I have inside. It’s how I emote,” Mendoza says. The raw honesty of Mujeres is in fact the raw honesty of Mendoza. Armed with the emotionality of traditional música mexicana and the storytelling of American folk, Y La Bamba’s artistry is not just their musical ability but Mendoza’s search for unadulterated truth. It is in an ancestral, spiritual journey in which Mendoza comes to terms with the influence and limitations of her upbringing. Mendoza’s experience of childhood summers in the San Joaquin Valley listening to mariachi, of being raised strict Catholic by immigrant parents, of being a woman having to prove herself to the boys, paints strokes of both melancholy and healing on the tracks. “From the way that my family struggles, to the way they shoot the shit… it’s so different from whiteness,” Mendoza says. “It’s a different dimension.”
Y La Bamba exists in the dimension of the Mexican American imagination: somewhere cynical and optimistic at the same time. While there is a celebration of the Mexican creativity that has informed Mendoza’s life, there is a darker side to reconcile with. Where do mujeres fit in to the American story? What are the sins for which we are all guilty? How do different generations interact with the world? How can a culture become visible without tokenization? It is no surprise that in Mujeres, Y La Bamba’s first record with Mendoza at the helm of production, Mendoza contemplates these questions to tell her story. But it is not just Mendoza’s story. Challenging a narrative and dealing with the emotionality of that effort— that is everyone’s story.
Rituals Of Mine
Rituals of Mine (FKA Sister Crayon) is a Los Angeles based electronic/downtempo r&b act who make “gorgeously gloomy pop” (Noisey) that exudes unparalleled passion, emotion and personal lyrics into their music. Lead singer Terra Lopez has been praised by The FADER, Pitchfork, Stereogum, Billboard, BUST Magazine and more for her captivating and ruthless stage presence. In 2018, BUST Magazine called Lopez “the movement leader we’ve all been waiting for”. Rituals of Mine’s beguiling debut ‘Devoted’ (produced by Wes Jones & co-produced by Omar Rodriguez-Lopez) was widely acclaimed in indie electronic circles and led the group to national tours with Deftones, Tricky, ANTEMASQUE, Le Butcherettes, The Afghan Whigs, Built to Spill, Doomtree & more. Most recently, Lopez has collaborated with Tricky and The Glitch Mob and can be heard on both of their most recent works. Rituals of Mine are currently working on their highly anticipated sophomore LP.
Vanessa Zamora Ramírez (Tijuana, Baja California on July 22, 1991), better known Vanessa Zamora is professionally is a singer and songwriter.
Daughter of parents who where pianists; since a very early age she showed interest in the classic arts; learning guitar, drums, acting, ballet and modeling. She started attending piano classes at 8 years old at Academia de Música de Mexico acquiring instruction in piano, at 9 years old she was instructed in guitar and drums.
She continued with her music as a hobby until she was 18 years old, attending university at Universidad Autónoma de Guadalajara, at that time she publicly started showing her music; she began doing video covers of various artists uploading them on YouTube and other social networking sites; she was known for the habit of writing whatever she thought, lived or felt in notebooks which she described as "brain drain. In 2012 she concluded her first EP 'Correr', later in 2012 'No Sabes'. She graduated in communication sciences in 2013 as an honor student. In 2014 she presented her first album Hasta la fantasía. In 2015 she presented the single 'Control'.