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Here’s How A Puerto Rican From New York Created A Mariachi Band That Would Not Only Fill A Void In The East Coast, But Get Nominated For A Grammy

Check out this performance from the Latin Grammy-nominated all-female mariachi band Flor de Toloache on #HarryTV!

Posted by Harry Connick Jr on Thursday, January 19, 2017

Flor De Toloache is a mariachi band with a mission: female empowerment.

Flor De Toloache was recently on Harry Connick Jr.’s new talk show, “Harry,” and the all-female mariachi group gave viewers chance to experience their powerful brand of ranchera music. Mireya Ramos, a founding member of the band, told Connick Jr. that the band came about from a love of music and a need for more women in the male-heavy mariachi music industry.

Ramos told Connick Jr. that she grew up with a mariachi father and fell in love with the music. After moving to NYC from Puerto Rico, Ramos’ first gig in the city was with a mariachi band. “And then I noticed that there weren’t very many women playing mariachi music in New York or any all-female groups like there was in the west coast,” Ramos told Connick Jr. “So, I was like, ‘Oh my God. We need to start our own group,’ to create a safe place for women to come together and make music and make money also. You know, living in New York’s expensive.”

So, how did this all-women mariachi band come to be?

@historicpearl #Echale Festival in San Antonio TX with the @dosequis bus!

A photo posted by Mariachi Flor de Toloache (@mariachinyc) on


The group has performed in France, Germany, Italy, the U.K., and the Netherlands, according to the band’s official website. They use the musical stylings of tradition Mexican mariachi but add their own twist, and some English lyrics, to make a sound all their own.

After so much attention abroad, U.S. mariachi fans started to take notice of the group. They were even nominated for a Latin-GRAMMY in 2015 for Best Ranchera Album.


The award ended up going to Pedro Fernandez, but the nomination was one moment that made Flor de Toloache’s journey worth while.

“We bring something very refreshing,” Ramos told Women You Should Know. “We have our own power and own command that we have to work harder for, however that translates, it’s different and special.”

Flor De Toloache is doing mariachi a little differently, incorporating women from different cultural backgrounds.


“The members hail from diverse cultural backgrounds such as Mexico, Puerto Rico, Dominican Republic, Cuba, Australia, Colombia, Germany, Italy and the United States,” reads the bio on the official website. “This defines their unique flavor and sound. The result of this cultural bouquet is an edgy, versatile and fresh take on traditional Mexican music.”

But the biggest mission of the mariachi group is giving women a chance to create music.


“I knew they were out there, but most of the musicians I worked with at the time were male,” Ramos told the Huffington Post. “It was also sort of an excuse to connect with other women artists. I wanted to create a platform for other women to be able to play other music and be known.”

As for why they chose to tackle the mariachi scene, it’s simple: more people are starting to appreciate the genre.

Shooting #VR #3603D #VIDEO @andokal and @JauntVR (get the App!) in #LA – will b released for #CincoDeMayo #leyendadancecompany

A photo posted by Mariachi Flor de Toloache (@mariachinyc) on


“Mariachi has been popular for over 100 years,” Ramos told the Wall Street Journal. “But now maybe it is getting more popular with more people who aren’t Mexican. So there is a blending of the cultures that seems to be taking place right now.”

BONUS: Check out their 20-minute Tiny Desk Concert for NPR below!


This is what modern mariachi sounds like and it’s pretty dope.


READ: The Latest Genre To Take “Music City, USA” By Storm? Mariachi, Of Course!

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Here's Why People Rush To Disneyland's Carnation Cafe To Take Selfies With This Adorable Chef

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Here’s Why People Rush To Disneyland’s Carnation Cafe To Take Selfies With This Adorable Chef

Disneyland’s longest continuously working cast member (that’s what Disneyland calls its employees) is this Latino chef who was born in Brownsville, Texas, moved to Arkansas when he was around nine years old, then moved to California in 1956 and got hired at Disneyland just one week later.

This is Oscar Martinez, but most people know him as Chef Oscar.

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Chef Oscar has worked in Disneyland for 60 years.

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Oscar started working at Disneyland in Anaheim on December 29, 1956 as a busboy.

In 1967, he became a cook at the Carnation Café on Main Street, U.S.A.

https://www.instagram.com/p/BDMK8enuWUG/


It’s safe to say he fell in love with his job, because he’s been there ever since.

He’s a Disneyland icon with a dish named after him.

https://www.instagram.com/p/4rdoamnu1x/


Oscar’s Choice: All American Breakfast was named to honor Chef Oscar and it includes his favorite breakfast potatoes.

People love to stop by Carnation Café to snap pictures with the chef who has his own hashtag: #ChefOscar

https://www.instagram.com/p/1bTYuZjhHc/


He still spends time in the kitchen, but most of the time he’s greeting and seating guests in the patio. And taking pictures, of course.

He’s 81 years old and has no plans to retire.


“No, I’m not ready for that yet. I’m not ready for retirement. I don’t want to talk about it because it’s way off,” he told ABC Action News. His work ethic is goals!

To honor his 60 years at Carnation Café, Disneyland made a one-of-a-kind custom statue for him.


The Cinderella-themed statue features Oscar’s likeness and has an inscription that reads “Thank you for helping to tell our stories for 60 magical years.”

WARNING: You’re about to fall in love with Chef Oscar.

Oscar Martinez, Longest Tenured Disneyland Resort Cast Member,…

Oscar Martinez, the longest tenured cast member at the Disneyland Resort, recently celebrated his 60th service anniversary! You can visit him at Carnation Café on Main Street, U.S.A. where “Oscar’s Choice” is a popular dish. Check out this video to see Oscar’s service award, created just for him at Walt Disney Imagineering!

Posted by Disneyland Resort Cast and Community on Thursday, January 19, 2017

Credit: DisneylandResortCommunity/Facebook

Learn more about Chef Oscar by clicking here.

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