The Latin Alternative Music Conference invaded New York City for a surprising 18th year, and all of the usual industry folks, fans & bands joined in the fest.
As he has done for many years, KCRW DJ Raul Campos trekked from Midtown to Downtown to Brooklyn to Central Park to MC and host many of the showcases and concerts.
This year was a little different because a number of the usual headlining, marquee names were not in attendance. But the focus remained on indie music in Spanish and the bands delivered to enthusiastic audiences in a city that never sleeps.
For the second year in a row, I was sent along to help Raul cover the weeklong conference for the blog and to help produce segments for his weekend shows.
Here are our highlights from the week:
Indie Showcase at the Highline Ballroom
There were a lot of baby bands that many in the crowd had never heard of but each one impressed us. Jangly indie rock of Indios, sexy funk of Juan Ingaramo, Jesse Baez’s mellow flow, and Javiera Mena’s glam pop performance; the show was stacked with budding talent!
Conversation with Eduardo Cabra (Calle 13) & Carlos Alomar (Producer)
Eduardo is a member of and produces Calle 13, one of the winningest Latin Grammy bands of all time; and Carlos Alomar was, at one time in his career, David Bowie’s musical director. He has also produced hugely commercial Latin bands. Their talk moderated by Raul Campos provided great insight into a producer’s perspective.
Mon Laferte in the KCRW Suite
Mon Laferte is one of the quickest rising stars of Latin music today and not without merit. She came up for a short interview with Raul and belted out 2 stripped down versions of her songs for his weekend show. Impressive performance would be an understatement.
Indios perform in an Elevator
These guys are young but incredibly talented out of Argentina. They came to showcase to anyone that would listen and we caught up with them as they rode the elevators of the hotel, performing a couple songs. We will have the full video for you guys in the coming weeks.
Buyepongo acoustic jam session
The LA natives and all around good-vibes ensemble, piled into the KCRW Suite and created a unique jam session just for us.
Using water bottles and whatever other props that could make sound, they performed 2 of their tracks from Todo Mundo.