Kansas City’s Making Movies on the East Coast!

Screen Shot 2014-09-30 at 12.51.23 PMScreen Shot 2014-09-30 at 12.22.05 PM

Screen Shot 2014-09-30 at 12.19.22 PMI’m excited that Kansas City’s Making Movies is playing a few shows on the East Coast! They’ll be hitting Philadelphia, D.C., and New York City, in early October.

But first, check out this great blurb from NPR Music’s Heavy Rotation blog, which features “songs that public radio can’t stop playing.” Making Movies’ “Pendulum Swing” is one of the songs on the list. (You can download it for free here.)

The disparate musical influences of a childhood split between Panama and Kansas City only begin to explain the unique sounds created by Making Movies. The band’s bilingual album A La Deriva is a lyrically adept examination of the struggles faced by immigrant families. Producer Steve Berlin of Los Lobos, while working to capture Making Movies’ sound, also encouraged the group to not repeat itself. The result is a wholly original work that expands the rich heritage of Latin Alternative music. “Pendulum Swing” is just one part of a thoughtful record — a part best experienced on the dance floor.Jon Hart, The Bridge, for NPR music’s Heavy Rotation blog.

Before they hit the East Coast, however, the guys are hosting a very special event — the first of its kind — in their home city. Who says you have to travel to Latin America or the Caribbean to experience an epic party worthy of the title, CARNIVAL?

Making Movies' Carnval will be emceed by Pili Montilla!
Making Movies’ Carnval will be emceed by Pili Montilla!

CARNAVAL in Kansas City (tickets) is an inaugural music and arts festival hosted by Making Movies. It takes place on Sunday, Oct. 5, 2014, at Knuckleheads, and radio station, 90.9, The Bridge, is a co-sponsor.

Making Movies’ Carnaval is a celebratory block party, bringing Kansas City residents and their families together to share an appreciation for alternative Latino arts.

“Kansas City does not currently have any major outlet for fans of alternative Latin music,” says event planner, Diego Chi, the band’s bassist. “Carnaval allows us to fill that void and showcase the various cultures of all of Latin America, not just Mexico. We hope to make it a very rich experience, no matter what ethnic background the audience comes from.”

The lineup features Grammy award-winning group Ozomatli, a band that has largely influenced the alternative Latin music scene in the United States.

The event emcee is our friend, Puerto Rican entertainment media maven, Pili Montilla. An EMMY nominated TV host, actress, producer, blogger & social media expert in the bilingual entertainment world, she created, produces, and hosts, the Emmy nominated music show, ‘Té Para Tres con Pili Montilla,’ where she spends several days with up-and-coming musicians as they share their struggles and triumphs. The show’s next season begins airing nationally on Saturday, Oct. 11, on Mega TV.

Finally, those of you who are familiar with Making Movies know they make it a mission to have their music give back, in some way, to their community. A portion of special merchandise sold at CARNAVAL will benefit the Guadalupe Centers, a local non-profit organization serving the needs of the Latino community. Dollars raised will go toward supporting The M.U.S.I.C.A. Project at the Guadalupe Centers.

Check out this cool clip of Ozomatli and Making Movies inviting the public to the event:

Also view this wonderfully produced video (promoted nationally) about the band by restaurant chain, Wingstop:

Making Movies then travels to D.C., where they’ll play a string of East Coast dates:

Wed, Oct 8     Washington, DC     Bossa
Thu, Oct 9      Philadelphia, PA     Milkboy
Fri, Oct 10      New York, NY         Knitting Factory (*FREE show for CBGB Music Festival)
Sun, Oct 12     Winston-Salem, NC     Second Sundays on Fourth

About the band:

Making Movies is an internationally touring band whose bilingual music has been featured on MTV, NBC Latino, CNN en Español, NPR, and other national publications. The band is poised to re-release its second album titled A La Deriva, which was produced by Grammy Award-winning producer and artist Steve Berlin of famed rock band Los Lobos on Colorado based label, United Interests. Making Movies will embark on an East and West tour this fall.

New music Tuesday: Making Movies ‘A La Deriva’

Screen shot 2013-03-05 at 1.28.19 PM
Making Movies, a band I first discovered during CMJ in New York City last year, is making waves with their new album.

“A La Deriva” is an 11-track high-energy tour de force that blends a multitude of traditionally dichotomous genres seamlessly.

The album is produced by Steve Berlin of the three-time Grammy winning, Chicano rock veterans, Los Lobos.

Together since ’09, Making Movies is turning out music that is bilingual and appealing to a WIDE audience. The kind of audience that encompasses many of today’s increasingly DIVERSE music fans, especially when you think of the growing Latino demographic.

Their music is indie rock. Alt Latino. Afro-caribbean in rhythm and percussion. Soulful. Indie. Classic in sound. New wave. It’s distinctly American, yet global.

Led by Panamanian brothers Enrique and Diego Chi (singer/songwriter/guitarist and bassist respectively) – and made complete by percussionist Juan Carlos Chaurand, and drummer Brendan Culp – Making Movies has been hailed as “a rare crossover band…that embraces its heritage without being wholly defined by it” (The Pitch).

And, as Marlon Bishop of MTV Iggy wrote last week, “… the band synthesizes what’s happening in indie rock and in Latin music better than anyone else out there today.”

Steve Berlin was first turned on to Making Movies when the guys opened up for Los Lobos at their Kansas City show. “I was struck by the effortless way they moved between musical styles, all the while managing to make each one completely their own,” Berlin explains.

Just as Los Lobos are tex-mex, cumbia, folk, blues, corrido but above all ROCK, Making Movies are a mixture of Latin music with a predominant American rock sound.

And this is why I believe they shouldn’t be considered JUST a Latin rock band.

Though they sing some of their lyrics in Spanish and use some instruments found in Latin music (not unlike Los Lobos or Bronx El Mariachi), they are an American rock band.

And that’s not all. The band co-founded a music camp for kids in underserved areas of Kansas City. WATCH this video about the wonderful impact they’re having with a diverse group of youth through music education. They’ve also been involved with DREAM act measures.

It may sound kind of idealistic on my part, but it’s what music is supposed to be. They’re making it for the fans, but also passing it on to the next generation.

You can grab “A La Deriva” at iTunes. You can also download the first single off the album, “Cuna De Vida,” over at Remezcla

Screen shot 2013-03-05 at 2.11.28 PM

And make sure to vote for Making Movies in MTV Iggy’s “Artist of the Week” contest, which ends at 11 a.m. on Friday, March 8.