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Another Great Weekend in Aztlan

It just keeps getting better in the Land of 1000 Dances

By Frankie Firme, Contributing Editor
Published on LatinoLA: April 2, 2014


Another Great Weekend in Aztlan


?íOrale, Mi Gente!

It seems we are all having a good time showing the kiddies & the grunge scene lames what's up at the start of spring by dressing up, steppin' out and enjoying the fresh air and music in L.A. even though we've had a couple earthquakes and a little rain lately.

"Whole lotta shakin' goin' on" takes on a different meaning in L.A. more than Jerry Lee Lewis's classic tune in the Land of 1000 Dances. Nuthin' but love out to you 'quake survivors out in La Habra & Fullerton, and you mud sliders out in Glendora, Azusa, and Covina.

Music, dancing, laughter, and good times with good people is the epitome of the celebration of life when shit happens ... so let's celebrate!

Last Friday, Bobby Martinez & The Brotherhood Band helped the Gente kick up a little chancla at the Presidente Restaurant in Northridge featuring the "Diamond of the Valley" singer Becky Cordova. Good sized crowd, too.

Git' on wit' yo bad selves, Brotherhood! Play the music for the people!

On the other side of town that same night, Freddy G and The Smooth Response Band packed the house and dance floor at the City Lights Night Club in Hacienda Heights, along with DJ Fernando NdaMIxx. Word on the street was that the house was shakin' better than an earthquake with good music and good people.

That's the way to do it, Freddy! ?íPongale, Homeboy!

Saturday started off so clean, with TIERRA getting together with about 1,000 fans & friends at the Santa Fe Springs Swap meet in the afternoon and a party broke out. As expected, TIERRA & their music brought out the good spirits in everybody, and the Gente were eating, drinking, dancing, and laughing in the sunshine together como familia. Then the guys packed it up and headed towards San Bernardino where they joined the Inland Empire's heavy hitters BB WOLF at the M15 Bar & Lounge for the Latin Oldies/Old School NIght Show. Another great performance and lots of happy Gente dancing into the night.

Get on wit' yo bad selves, TIERRA! ?íComo siempre!

Also that same night, the pride of Azusa, California, BALANCE, featuring the incomparable Sammy Medina, lit up the night in Orange County at Original Mike's
In Santa Ana. Got a couple text messages that BALANCE tore it up!!! (Couldn't expect less from Sammy & Balance, could you?)

Freddy G & SMOOTH RESPONSE packed the house at the IV Private Party Lounge in Norwalk on this same Saturday night. They just keep getting better & better we hear.

Also on this Saturday night, Ray Carrion and his famed Latin All Stars laid down the musical red carpet for the L.A. Divas Show at Steven's Steakhouse in East L.A. featuring Lady singers: Ersi Arvisu, Irma "Cui Cui" Rangel, Becky Cordova, Jacnique H. Love, Norrell Thompson, TeCheetah Lopez, Sara Morgan, and Denise Herrera. Heard the show was all the way live !

Only reason I missed any of those killer shows on Saturday was that I was busy having fun hosting & MC-ing a show featuring the San Fernando Valley's FRANKIE FONTAINE's triumphant return to the San Fernando Valley concert-dance at the Canoga Park Knights of Columbus Hall. Joined by the Valley's popular Company Band, with guest stars Bobby Loya and Johnny Burrola, the crowd was treated to a surprise opening performance by L.A.'s King of Underground R&B Rocky Padilla & The Persuasion Band, along with popular DJ Gus "The Godfather" Mata.

Over 350 good people from the SFV got together and partied hard and had a good time dancing the night away (despite some knucklehead who showed up trying to be a tuff guy ... he didn't make it. We all laughed, LOL) as Frankie Fontaine was on his J-O-B for 3 killer sets with The Company Band, singing & dancing his heart out both on and off the stage as he drew loud applause, keeping the dance floor full all night, and proving why he's one of the San Fernando Valley's favorite party entertainer.

Great night! We all had a ball!

The next day, Sunday, we packed it up an headed towards the famed Whittier Radisson Hotel to join my good friend Peter Jaramillo and a large group of talented musicians & singers at Peter's 2nd Open Pro Jam in the Radisson's Ultra Lounge.

A good, supportive crowd showed up as artists such as Freddy Gusman & Alma Gonzalez of the SMOOTH RESPONSE Band (who also doubled as sound engineers), Vanessa Hernandez-Salas of TEASE, Jay Pacheco, Addie Benavides, Mike "Timebomb" Castenon, Danny Boy Padilla, Andy Rojo of BUMPTOWN, Martin "Chili" Ortega of SANGRIA, Ruben Arroyo, Felecia & Celecia Williams, Tony Miramontes of L.A. BLUE, Gus Herrera, Arthur Zavala, Peter Jaramillo on drums for a minute, and many others[/b] (forgive me if I didn't catch your names) all jamming and sounding so good. I was even honored and invited to go up on stage and sing a Blues song.

Peter Jaramillo beamed like a proud papa as he surveyed the large crowd and dug the music. " This so cool...I'm having fun! I'm not making a dime from this...I just put it together for the love of music & musicians... and check out the large crowd of people that came here!...we gotta do this again!" he tells LatinoLA.

To everybody's surprise, L.A. Dodger Legend MANNY MOTA even showed up to catch the show!.

After the show, we crossed the street and walked a couple blocks up to Whittier's best kept secret, RED OAK BAR-B-QUE in uptown Whittier on Greenleaf Avenue, where we enjoyed some of the best Santa Maria style bar-b-que ribs, chicken and tri-tip anywhere in L.A., along with the most KILLER Chicano style Jumbalaya you've ever tasted, I kid you not! Great service & decent prices, good atmosphere, they even play mellow Oldies while you munch....my kind of place!

Then...across the street to the Candylicious Classic Candy Store for a couple of jumbo-sized gourmet candy apple (10 different flavors) for dessert, and other assorted hard to find candies for the ladies.

And that was just a little piece of last weekend...

This weekend starts off Friday night at the Presidente Restaurant in Northridge as Bobby Martinez & the Brotherhood Band again take the stage featuring the "Diamond of the Valley" singer Becky Cordova for a night of hot Latin Soul, R&B, Funk, Oldies and top 40. Show stars at 9 pm, come early & get a good seat and some good food.

(Unfortunately, due to unforeseen politics & internal problems, the recently re-opened AmVets Post 113 in Irwindale has been re-closed down again, and the scheduled grand re-opening "Cruise Night" dance-fundraiser event supporting Veterans and the community of Irwindale has been cancelled, with deepest regrets by the organizers.)

This Saturday night, I'm lucky & honored to Host & DJ the show for Texas powerhouse VUDU CAFE's much demanded return to Southern California at the Mayflower Club in North Hollywood. Celebrating the success of their Chicano Rock CD, VuDu Caf?® are a great music show of Chicano Rock, Blues, Funk, and Alternative style Oldies that will rock the house solid. Also performing will be Gil Rocha & The Boulevard Knights, a popular Classic Oldies band.

Tickets still available at 818-935-8516 or look up VuDu Caf?® on Facebook. See you there!

Spring is here...why waste it sitting at home, watching TV, and letting your cholesterol levels go up?

About Frankie Firme, Contributing Editor:
Frankie Firme is the Al Capone of the microphone & the Hitman of West Coast Chicano Soul ,also known as the Voice of Aztlan, heard daily on World wide Internet Radio station www.eastLArevue.com
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