Latinx Origins’ podcast explores unsung musical pioneers – Press Enterprise

Growing up in Tijuana, Mexico, in the early ’90s and playing in ska-punk band Tijuana No! at just 15 years old, Ceci Bastida said she and her bandmates knew the music of punk rock bands like The Clash, Ramones and Sex Pistols, but didn’t realize that Latin music and culture had also had an instrumental role in the genre.

Now Bastida, who currently resides in Los Angeles, is the host of the eight-episode podcast, “Punk in Translation: Latinx Origins,” that tells the stories of Latin artists and their music’s role in the evolution of punk rock music. The audio documentary, which was written by Judy Cantor-Navas and Nurla Net, is available on Audible in English and Spanish.

“Generally, people don’t know these stories,” Bastida said during a recent video interview. “A lot of people associate punk rock with a certain kind of look and see it as music made by men. But I think it’s important to talk about and show the influence that came from Latin America and the impact it had on American music.”

In each episode, she interviews a wide variety of artists, including Louie Pérez of Los Lobos, Erwin Flores of Peru’s Los Saicos, Joan Jett of The Runaways, Gun Club/The Cramps guitarist Kid Congo Powers, Blondie drummer Clem Burke, Dead Kennedys’ Jello Biafra, John Doe of X, and Latin pop star and Bastida’s former Tijuana No! band mate Julieta Venegas and more.

One of the most interesting stories, Bastida said, is told in the opening of the series as she speaks with Question Mark and the Mysterians’ guitarist Bobby Balderrama. The band of Mexican American musicians from Michigan appeared on “American Bandstand” in 1966 to perform its song “96 Tears.” It was the first song by a Mexican American band to top the Billboard Hot 100 chart, something that wouldn’t happen again until 1987 when Los Lobos covered “La Bamba,” Bastida noted.

In 1971, the term “punk rock” was coined for the first time by music journalist Dave Marsh of Creem Magazine – and he used to describe Question Mark and the Mysterians.

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