El Rey del Mariachi

Jose Hernandez headlines Mariachi Heritage Society fundraiser, February 7

By Ilene Proctor
Published on LatinoLA: January 21, 2004

El Rey del Mariachi

When it comes to mariachi music, there can never be enough said about its maestro, Jose Hernandez.

Hernandez is a legend in his own time, a Mexican Mozart. Known by lovers of mariachi music as its pied piper, Hernandez plays mariachi on a grand symphonic scale. In terms of popularity and sheer international renown, Jose Hernandez is unquestionably the master of the mariachi medium. He has an excellent and eclectic knowledge of music, both past and present, and his inspiration and references ricochet from Bach to Leonard Bernstein to Augustine Lara to Jose Alfredo Jimenez . Last year, he was credited with creating the world?s first mariachi opera? which he deftly named Operachi.

One way to judge Jose?s success is to look at the musical company he keeps and the reviews he earns. He has recorded with the most respected and recognized names in the industry, including Selena, Linda Rondstadt, Vikki Carr, Willie Nelson, Juan Gabriel, Lucha Villa, Lola Beltran, Vincente Fernandez, Rocio Durcal and Guadalupe Pineda. Many of the albums have gone double platinum.

Who is this Liberace of Mariachi? Mariachi?s child, Jose Hernandez, was to his heritage born and bred. As a descendant of five generations of mariachi musicians, he has been performing - along with his five brothers - since the tender age of three.

His fluent mastery of the medium has led him to assist in many film scores and compose, arrange, produce and tour internationally to universally sold-out audiences. Jose arranged and produced ?Tu Solo Tu ? from Selena?s ?Dreaming of You ? album which established a new record for Billboard magazine, and set an historic precedent for traditional ranchera music at Number One on the Hot Latin Tracks...and he is the only mariachi to sign a contract with Fonovisa.

His sales of Tu Solo Tu brought in very heavy metal at the cash register.

At the Latin Grammy Awards, he performed to thunderous applause with Alejandro Fernandez. Fans recognized him and Mariachi Reyna in the Seabiscuit ,

Under the leadership of Maestro Hernandez, Mariachi Sol de Mexico became the first and only mariachi group to play the classical musical circuit. When he created the Mariachi Sol de Mexico in 1981, Jose set the scene for the tide of creative irreverence that set the Latin musical world afire. His style is an in-your-face fusion of classical stylings and contemporary harmonies mixed with modern chord structures. Jose today finds himself a link to a time when mariachi music meant honest emotion and true originality.

Jose?s tours have become an international institution, a traveling cultural icon that symbolizes eclectic musicianship and communal cross-generational joy. From Puerto Rico to Hawaii, from Latin America to the most famous symphonic venues in the world playing together with the prestigious Los Angeles Philharmonic, and Texas, New Mexico, Denver, Sacramento, Inland Empire Symphony Orchestras , Sol de Mexico?s performances are consistently sold out. Mariachi Sol de Mexico has traveled worldwide to Spain, Chili, the Bahamas and Hawaii. They are the only mariachi musicians who have been invited to perform in China, North and South Korea as well as Japan.

Always the pioneer, Jose Hernandez of Mariachi Sol de Mexico is on a musical track in cyberspace - and now his legion of musical followers can chat and hear him on-line. Log on: http://www.mariachi-sol.com.

If music is the universal language, then mariachi is its Latin accent. And no one speaks the language more brilliantly than Jose Hernandez and the nation?s premier Mariachi Sol de Mexico.

WHAT: The 13th Annual Fundraiser for the Mariachi Heritage Society.

WHO: Grammy nominated Jose Hernandez, the nation?s premier Mariachi,with special guest the beautiful and legendary Ana Barbara, plus the first all-female Mariachi Reyna de Los Angeles and the spectacular Pacifico Dance Company plus The Mariachi Heritage Students from Azus, Magnolia, Maxwell, South El Monte, Carson, Cerritos and Norwalk.

WHEN: February 7, 2004 at 6:30 PM

WHERE: San Gabriel Civic Auditorium
320 South Mission Drive
San Gabriel, California

Tickets: $125.00. $51.00. $41.00. $31.00; Tickets are available through Ticketmaster, or 626 279 2064

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