This week along with Halloween, a large majority of the Spanish-speaking world celebrates Día de Muertos. A bit of a misnomer, Day of the Dead takes place over the course of Oct 31 – Nov 2. It is a process of remembrance and tribute to those loved ones who are no longer with us.
Ofrendas (altars) containing their favorite foods, drinks, and/or pictures are built and adorned with papel picado, pan de muerto (sweet bread), and cempazúchitl (flower of the dead/marigolds). A trip to the cemetery to have lunch or a drink alongside your loved one’s resting place is a bit more traditional and still practiced.
So it is with this Holiday of recollection in mind, that today we remember a handful of the bands that are no longer with us. Those whose music impacted us greatly over the years. We remember them as they once were in their heyday, ignoring that they may have reunited once or twice to cash in with a brief tour.
Heroes del Silencio (1984-1996, Spain) – One of the Godfathers of the Rock En Español genre whose sound became so representative of the musical movement, many young kids now days use their logo as a scenester identifier. A sound so iconic that radio stations programmed formats with that style of music a decade after the band’s existence. There has been no house party, or latin club night since where a dance remix of theirs isn’t played at least once during the night.
Caifanes (1987-1995, Mexico) –This band’s reunion at Vive Latino in 2011 made for an event that even a casual fan dare not miss. 70 thousand plus packed into the Foro Sol in Mexico City to witness these legends back on stage together after a 17 year absence. Similar to Heroes del Silencio – their music became a lifestyle, fashion statement, and possibly the most overused band tattoo for a generation.
Gustavo Cerati (Aug. 11, 1959 – Sept. 4, 2014, Argentina) – Cerati, as he was affectionately referred to by fans, passed away on 2014 after a four year battle in and out of a stroke induced coma. He first came to prominence with the seminal Argentine rock band, Soda Estereo. He was also the first of the “Rockero” to continue producing music as a solo artist with a fruitful career. His album Bocanada is often sighted in many Top 10 lists.
Teleradio Donoso (2005-2009, Chile) – As quickly as they were here, they were gone. In fact most people did not discover their disco frenzied sounds until after the band broke up. Possibly in part due to former lead singer Alex Anwandter’s successful solo career and prolific collaborations with many artists during the Chilean musical renaissance of the mid 2000’s.
Slowrider (1999-2004, USA) – Climbing to the top of an East LA music scene that had dozens of bands doing the “Ozomatli thing” (blending rock, jazz, funk, rap, salsa, and cumbia) this six piece stood out because of their rapid fire bilingual MC Olmeca, and the arrangements from dgomez & Carlos Zepeda. Their live shows were fuego, and their 3 albums have stood the test of time.
Enjoy this playlist of other bands who we miss but are glad their music still exists.
Note: For the sake of being accurate, we considered a band dead if they have not put out any new music since their “breakup date”.