Last night I gave free hugs to show my luv for the arts.. Musician/Composer/Singer/Songwriter Pilar Diaz is on a mission to go to the “Viva la Cancion” music festival with her crew Gloria and Tony. This will be an opportunity for Los Angeles Latinos to give Madrid some flavor and to participate in a relief support in the aftermath of the devastating earthquake in Chile. Pilar will be sharing the stage with Javiera Mena, Julio De La Rosa, Gabo, Gepe, Chinoy, and others yet to be announced. The Eastside Luv Vino y Queso bar in Boyle Heights hosted a fundraiser for this event last night that sold out the venue and had everyone dancing the night away to three of my favorite acts today: La Santa Cecilia, Pilar Diaz and Conjunto Nueva Ola. La Santa Cecilia was the first to take the stage with guitar solos by La Santa Gloria, our kickstarter recipient, while front woman Marisoul shimmied her way up and down the bar/stage, wooing her way to the dance pole for a song and spin. I love women that rock! They almost closed their set with a rendition of “Pump Up The Jam” by Salt n Peppa that fed the crowd for more… La Santa Cecilia delivered.
In the intermission, the Lousy Bunch made sure FREE HUGS were distributed, which gave me the opportunity to meet some of my facebook friends. Joseph Perez drove up from the OC to the bar for the first time to claim his free hug. He was extremely happy to be there and couldn’t wait for Pilar to hit the stage.
Once she surfaced, we all knew we were in for a treat. A treat for our eyes and ears that has been a work in progress for about a decade. At least that’s how long I’ve been following her music journey, thanks in part to my LATV experience. She started with lucky number 13, Friday the 13th that is. As I watched her light up the stage with her song and dance performance, I couldn’t help imagining it all happening in Madrid for them. It was inspiring to say the least. I wish I could go.
And just when you think it can’t get any better, a bunch of masked hooligans take over the stage… When Conjunto Nueva Ola shows their luv, it’s overwhelming. Part comedy, part music, ALL show! I had flashbacks of things that never happened because I’ve never heard a Devo cumbia before, but it made sense. All my senses were dancing, singing and screaming “No te metas con mi cucu” and other favorites. Puro pinche pari! They hit the scene straight out of a Mexico City Quinceanera on roller skates and bedazzled lucha libre masks!
You can imagine how hungry I was after all this action! I had a pre and post show taco experience in East LA and Mid City. The first was with las Hermanas Torres on the corner of E. 1st and S. Breed St. The taco truck is open from 4-11:45 pm in two locations and accepts phone orders (323) 401-9847. They operate Thursday thru Sunday. They set up on the corner of E. 3rd St and S. Breed St. from 4-6:30 pm and on E. 1st St and S. Breed St from 6:30 pm – 11:45 pm. I enjoyed 2 tacos, carne asada and al pastor. I knew it was going to be good when I tried their cucumber salad: a combination of onion, lemon juice and herbs. I tried the brown salsa and pico de gallo but I had to eat on the run to make it early to the show. Eastside Luv can fill up fast and having a good seat makes a big difference. On our way to the venue, we also made a booze stop for a rare rum that my friend had to get his hands on. That’s where I bought the worst kind of beer I’ve ever had. Piraat Ale is a strong Belgiam ale that put some hairs on my chest. I poured it out before I started talking like a pirate.
The second taco stop was after the show near one of my drop off locations… Yes kids, we carpool, you should too. Tacos Leo on Venice and La Brea (323) 743-5207. Again, I had a carne asada and al pastor double take. And oh my goodness… I got some pineapple with my al pastor which is an authentic combination straight out of Michoacan! Everything was delicious until I topped my taco with a red sauce that turned out to be chipotle. I am not a fan of chipotle. The taste of roasted jalapenos is just too powerful and unfortunately doesn’t work for my palette. I’m hoping to work on it but the tacos were stellar regardless. I will be back.
I hope Pilar and her crew make their goal and take Madrid by storm.
Show the luv, it’s contagious.