Somehow over a month has passed since I posted here. It's been a busy one, as they tend to be in the summertime. I wanted to post some pictures quickly before too too much time passes.

The usual start to the summer is the Tejano Conjunto Festival en San Antonio, and this was an especially important year since it was the 30th anniversary. This was certainly among the best I have attended in the six years I've been going.

here is a view of the always crowded dance floor.

I was in San Antonio for a long time and also had the opportunity to go to the Royal Palace ballroom for the daily dances. I forgot to take a picture, but I did remember to get one of Lerma's the legendary club on the west side that I usually describe as the CBGBs of conjunto music. The building it is in has been condemned so Lerma's is soon going to be gone forever.

I also had the opportunity to visit again the storied Macias bajo sexto shop, the Stradivarius of San Antonio. I am thinking of writing the history of the Macias bajo, which is a story that really needs to be told. Here is an image of George Macias, grandson of the founder, standing beneath two oil paintings of his grandfather and father. These paintings were made from some iconic photographs by a painter in Iraq hired by George's son, who is serving in the military.

And the most incredible experience I had this time was spending two days with Santiago Jimenez, Jr. listening to his and his father's music and to an array of stories that can only be captured fully in a book (hopefully a forthcoming one...)
Here is Santiago in his iconic pose, with an accordion recently painted expressly for El Chief:

It happens that this week I just had an article titled "Transmission of Texas-Mexican Conjunto Music in the 21st century" published in the International Journal of Intangible Heritage (article downloadable for free here), so things have lined up fairly nicely.

I have a lot more to say about all of these experiences but will wait until there is some more time.


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