Los Cenzontles (Mexico / USA)
Los Cenzontles (“The Mockingbirds” in Nahuatl) is a band, a cultural arts academy for adults and youth alike and a community space which works together to amplify Mexican and Mexican-American roots tradition. Beginning as a youth music group in 1989 formed by Eugene Rodriguez, they have made a name for themselves across the US, Mexico and in Europe, pioneering revivals of Mexican roots music in California, cultivating traditional rhythms to connect generations. Based in the Bay Area of California, their media productions have been broadcast nationally on PBS. They have recorded and performed with a number of critically acclaimed artists such as Ry Cooder, Linda Ronstadt, Los Lobos, The Chieftans and Jackson Browne, infusing a deep sense of cultural heritage both into both folk songs and spirited originals.
The youth education element of Los Cenzontles is still prevalent in the form of Los Cenzontles Juvenil. They start young, absorbing deep traditions and rhythms, and learning to sing in both Spanish and Mexican Indigenous languages, of which there are sixty-eight.