After Their Lead Singer Quit the Band (Twice), This Band Responded by Releasing Its Strongest Album

The Space Cowboys Return to Aztlán: A Q&A with Porter

When vocalist Juan Son left Porter in 2013, most people assumed it was a death sentence for the Guadalajara-based rock outfit, which had just reunited after a four-year hiatus. After all, the clear star of the band was Juan Son, whose high-pitched, meandering vocals and stage presence made him a fan favorite. Son (real name: Juan Carlos Pereda) was largely seen as the creative force behind the band’s first two releases, 2005’s Donde Los Ponys Pastan and 2007’s Atemahawke. With Son gone, Porter had a few choices: disband once more or look for a new singer.

Enter David Velasco. A soft-spoken singer with a voice similar to Son’s, Velasco filled in as Porter’s lead vocalist after Son quit the band. Velasco eventually became a permanent member of the group. The similarity between the two singers’ breathy vocals wasn’t lost on fans, and Velasco spent a month enduring insults on the Internet from disgruntled fans who lamented that Porter had gone from “Juan Son to panzón (from Juan Son to a fat guy).”

Late last year, Porter released Moctezuma, its first album with Velasco. Unlike countless bands who have tried and failed to replace an “irreplaceable” lead singer, Porter have created their arguably most focused and polished album. Inspired by Mexico’s pre-Hispanic era, Moctezuma is packed with indigenous Mexican rhythms, history and mythology that may remind listeners of Caifanes and early Cafe Tacvba. On tracks like “Murciélago,” “Huitzil” and “Palapa,” the whole band – not just its singer – displays a confidence that shows Porter was never a one man band.

We caught up with lead singer David Velasco to talk about Moctezuma, Mexican pride and his bumpy transition to Porter’s lead singer.

Your start with the band was rocky, but it seems like you’ve won over the fans.

Yeah, I think we’ve become more solid because now I really feel like I’m a part of the band. At the beginning, I was a bit scared. So as I became more confident, the fans felt that confidence. We also have this advantage now where there’s fans who are 14, 15 years old, who never really experienced the first iteration of the band. So… the train keeps rolling.

Do you think you were trying too hard to emulate Juan Son?

A little bit. I put a lot of consideration into what the fans were used to hearing. If we would have made too drastic of a change, the fans probably would have responded differently. So my idea was to maintain that style, to continue to speak that language they were used to and, little by little, let my voice ring out a bit more and be myself a bit more.

Photo Credit: Porter / Facebook

Moctezuma is a tight, polished album. How’d you pull it off?

We’ve all matured as people, and that’s been a big part of the more mature sound of the band. The other projects we worked on while the band was on hiatus also had a part in making us, and the album, much stronger. We also worked closely with the producers of Moctezuma… so all those things add up.

The album is packed pre-Hispanic rhythms, history and mythology. Was it planned from the start or did it happen organically?

The first thing we came up with was the name of the album, Moctezuma. From there, we tapped into these strong emotions we had about writing about Mexico. During our rehearsals, Fer would say “Imagine an indigenous person finding the instruments we have here. How would that person play them?” So it was definitely intentional from the start.

Yes, Beyoncé Really Did Run Into Selena Quintanilla At A Mall Back In The Day


Yes, Beyoncé Really Did Run Into Selena Quintanilla At A Mall Back In The Day

Part 2 of Netflix’s “Selena: The Series,” is currently streaming, which means fans of the late Tejano singer are getting a chance to learn more about her origin stories. In the second part of the series, fans can expect to see more of the icon’s tragically brief but beautifully successful life. The new episodes chronicle Selena Quintanilla’s rise as a superstar and will no doubt make fans of the singer feel a deep sense of love for her.

Particularly when it comes to one episode in particular!

Part 2’s episode 6, called “Lo Más Bello,” sees the lives of two superstars collide.

The endearing episode sees Selena, played by Christian Serratos, on a shopping trip to an outdoor mall with her mother and sister. It’s then that the young singer catches the eye of a young girl who is also with her mother and sister.

Perhaps it’s real seeing real, but in either case in this episode, the young girl stops to gaze at Selena. She’s star-struck. In the episode, the young girl’s mother asks who she’s looking at and the girl replies, “Selena, a famous singer. Be quiet!”

Knowing that her daughter is a singer herself, the mother encourages her to introduce herself. Of course, the young girl is too shy to say hello but she does wave.

When Selena walks away, the young girl’s mother reveals a fun twist when she says “Beyoncé Knowles, you better learn not to be afraid of people if you ever want to be famous too.”

Like we said…

Real recognizing real.

“Selena: The Series” / Netflix

While it might seem like the producers took creative liberty, it turns out they actually didn’t. And it makes sense. Fans of Selena and Beyoncé know that the two singers are Texan-icons.

In a recent interview for MTV Trés, Beyoncé revealed that she actually did see Selena, in the Galleria Mall in Houston. “I didn’t say much to Selena because I wasn’t a celebrity,” Beyoncé said in an interview for MTV Trés back in the day. “I just saw her and said hello and kept it moving. Definitely growing up in Texas I heard her on the radio, and I think listening to her album, even though I didn’t know exactly what she was saying, it helped me in the studio with my pronunciation.”

Fans of the Texan starlets might also remember how Beyonce, in a 2007 interview with People en Español, spoke about her love of Selena.

At the time, Beyoncée was celebrating her re-release of six Spanish-language tracks. “I listened to Selena all the time” she recalled at the time of the interview. “She’s close to me because of where I’m from.”

Both “Selena: The Series” Parts 1 and 2 are streaming right now on Netflix! Check them out!

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Shakira Dyed Her Hair Red And It Will Give You Major ‘Ojos Asi’ Vibes


Shakira Dyed Her Hair Red And It Will Give You Major ‘Ojos Asi’ Vibes

Twenty years have passed since Shakira released her fourth studio album ¿Dónde Están los Ladrones? which featured her song “Ojos Asi.”

The music video for the hit song featured Shakira belly dancing with a vibrant red hair look that so many of us spent the early aughts attempting to emulate. The video won the International Viewer’s Choice Award (North) at the 2000 MTV Video Music Awards and the hair won a place in our hearts.

Now, it’s 2021 and Shakira has returned to the red color.

The Colombian singer-songwriter showed off her dyed locks in a post shared on her Instagram on Wednesday.

The post showed Shakira preparing for a recording session and saw her dressed in a chic green-and-white outfit. She teased her upcoming project with the caption “Ready to leave my house to go to my first in-person studio session to meet with some awesome collaborators thanks to safety measures and vaccines. I can’t wait!”

Shakira made waves earlier this month on Instagram that weren’t about her hair.

In an effort to highlight Earth Day, Shakira signed a letter written by Earth shot Prize Council which called on people to tackle our planet’s current climate crisis with the same tenacity used to fight Covid-19.

In a post shared to her Instagram and Twitter pages the singer wrote “As a Member of The @EarthshotPrize Council, I’m calling on the world to Give the Earth a Shot. This #EarthDay, let’s be inspired by the innovation of the past year & work together to repair our planet.”

She also attached a link to the full letter which underlined how “People everywhere have worn masks, stayed at home and made sacrifices for the greater good. The availability of vaccines after just a year is both a triumph of science and a victory for collaboration. There is a long way to go. None of us are safe until everybody is safe. But we have learned what it means to pull together in the face of a truly global crisis. These lessons apply not just to pandemics but to the most pressing challenge in human history: stopping the climate emergency. If we do not act in this decade, the damage to our planet will be irreversible, impacting not only those of us alive today but threatening the future of generations to come.”

Shakira’s upcoming album is most anticipated by her fans. It will be her first studio album release since the 2017 release of her album El Dorado.

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