In Good Company
Becky Cordova & the Company Band dispel all rumors, and keep it alive in the Land of 1000 Dances
Frankie Firme ~ Contributing Editor
It's been awhile since I've partied and danced with my friends the Company Band from San Fernando. Not that I'm being anti-social, but a lot of things are happening here in the Land of 1000 Dances, and it's hard to keep up with everyone I'm blessed to call my friends.
Published on LatinoLA: March 9, 2009
The last time I was in their good company was last summer when I joined them for a gig up in Lompoc, California, during one of their successful concert tours surrounding the release of their 2nd CD, and of course, Becky Cordova and Company stole hearts and made lots of new friends and fans‘«™.
Fast forward, spring of 2009. I'm getting rumors and inquiries as to the health of the Company's lead singer, Becky Cordova, with rumors that she's on her death bed, suffering from cancer, and not on stage anymore, and the band is slowly disintegrating‘«™
‘«™well, NO benefit concerts, fundraisers, or anybody asking me or anybody else I know for donations are happening, so I get to scratching my head and making calls...am I missing something?....
I get a hold of band leader Eddie Garcia, and he says "No, Frankie. Becky's put up her dukes and came out swinging against cancer for a second time, and she's still undefeated! You should see her on stage. She's stronger than ever‘«™ain't nothing keeping her off the stage that she loves so much. And we took a short break with her, but we're back out there, jammin' and partying with the people"‘«™.
...ok‘«™a close friend would say that to cover some bad news, but Eddie's not known for pulling punches‘«™so I gotta see this for myself.
Friday night has me elsewhere, but word on the street from the LatinoLA road dogs is that the Company Band performed at the Sixty-25 Club in Tarzana to what I hear was a packed house, with Becky rockin' the house with her dynamic vocals.
Saturday night, my Lady and I (pre-conceived "pobrecita" cari??os and sympathy well wishes for a suffering friend in hand), go to check them out at Don Cuco's Restaurant & Cantina in Santa Clarita, as guests of Eddie & Co.
We walk into a crowded dinner hall where there she is on stage‘«™smiling and dancing and hittin' them high notes like nobody's business, keeping the dance floor full and a party going. Through three grueling sets, all eyes are on Becky, as she hits soft percussion, dances to every tune, and is either singing lead or back up vocals, as the Company band performs like a well-oiled machine. Hubby Ray Cordova is probably one of the few L.A. keyboardists who can still ride the "Hammond" organ sound (reminiscent of Bobby Espinosa or Jimmy Smith) and make it his own, and together, they help make up the Company Band sound I have come to admire so well...and dance to so often.
OK‘«™so we close the place down, keep our sympathy and sore dancing feet to ourselves, and end the night sitting with the Company Band for a last drink before Eddie tells me "Hey. We're playing tomorrow at the Santa Fe Springs Swap Meet. Meet us out there."
Was he serious? Getting a recovering Becky out there for a third gig in a row?
Becky shows no sign of being sick, although she tells us she recently went through cancer treatment for a second time, beat that mutha, and "I now have nothing to make me afraid anymore. Whatever it may be‘«™bring it on! I love to sing for my friends and fans, and that's what GOD gave me a second and third chance to do, so here I come!".
Gotta LOVE that spirit!...but three gigs in a row?...
Sunday afternoon is beautiful in L.A., and by the way it was so difficult to find a parking space, I knew the Santa Fe Springs swap meet was gonna be crowded today‘«™word got around that Becky & The Company were in town.
With well over 1,000 people in the patio, Becky again showed her stuff through 3 ripping sets of Rock & Roll, and didn't look a bit fatigued as she's easily smiling, greeting fans, dancing, and singing her heart out, as the Company keeps the outdoor dance floor full of happy Gente with a great performance.
...and Becky's on her J-O-B !!
It was quite a warm feeling that I wish I could adequately describe for those of you who missed a great show & party. Here was well over 1,000 people, strangers for the most part, and we're all going through hard times, but getting together for some food, cool drinks, live music and dancing is just something you don't avoid if you can help it when the music & mood are good!
Strangers getting together like family, and it all seemed like one big family bar-b-que party. Lots of laughs, lots of respect for each other, no problems, and nothing but love in the air...and for just a moment, the hard times didn't hurt so much!
The Company Band has that effect on people‘«™..I've been there more than a few times!
I mean no disrespect to veteran L.A. Chicano guitar killers like Rudy Salas, Chris Reserva, or Micky Lespron, but the Company's guitarist Ray Carreon (who also does double duty with EL CHICANO) deserves his spot up there with the big boys of Los Angeles as this brother can play with gusto & style‘«™even playing a lead with his TEETH!
Rounding out the beef of the group, veteran vocalist Eddie Garcia adds that final touch of musical class that let's you know this is an 'A" level band...his band.
(Get on with your bad self, Eddie! )
So‘«™you heard it first here on LatinoLA‘«™the rumors are wrong, and Becky Cordova is going strong‘«™
‘«™and she's in good Company in the Land of 1000 Dances !
Frankie Firme ~ Contributing Editor:
Frankie Firme is the "Al Capone of the microphone and the Hitman of West Coast Chicano Soul" heard daily on Internet Radio and is a regular contributor to this fine web magazine.
Email the author