Sarah Sexton 510
Where to even start with this record. I'm made speechless every time I listen to it - from the delicately emotional vocals to the immaculate bed of strings in which they lay - the world is a better place for having this slice of heaven to escape to.
The first time I ever heard Diana play live, I knew I'd seen something special that would stay with me forever. I'm so happy to have more music to take home. Her gorgeous studio arrangements never overwhelm the intimate, expressive quality of her voice - they retain the magic of her stage performances while adding careful, colorful dimensions.
Family and tradition, indeed. This album packs SO MUCH emotion, it's nearly impossible to believe. Gentle and expressive and engaging. Only Diana could have created this, I think.
Favorite track: Dos Arbolitos.
Diana Gameros has one of the most beautiful voices I've ever heard. A very touching piece, even if you don't speak Spanish. If you like to listen to music to help you fall asleep, this is the album for you.
Favorite track: Deja Que Salga La Luna.
The songs in Arrullo are songs from my childhood. These songs lull me and take me back to the times when my big Mexican family would gather in my grandparents' home - a pink house surrounded by pecan trees, rose shrubs and cacti - located in a small farm town called Torreoncitos, eight hours south of Ciudad Juárez, my hometown. I can still hear it all: the voices of my mother and grandmother singing in the living room; the strum of my uncle's guitars, and their voices harmonizing to my grandmother’s melody; the uproar of happy kids dancing to the tunes; the uneven rhythm of my own guitar slowing down everybody's beat because I was still learning how to play; the faraway sounds of dogs, cows and chickens accompanying our music from a distance. This album is an homage to those times, to my abuelita’s living room - my first music “school”- , to the farm life, and to the country that showed me the magical beauty of family and traditions.
Las canciones de Arrullo son canciones de mi niñez. Cantos que ahora me mecen y me remontan a los tiempos en los que mi enorme familia mexicana se reunía en el hogar de mis abuelos, esa casa rosada rodeada de nogales, rosales y nopales, ubicada en un pequeño pueblo campesino llamado Torreoncitos, ocho horas al sur de Ciudad Juárez, mi ciudad natal. Y vuelvo a escucharlo todo: las voces de mi madre y mi abuela cantando en la sala; el rasgueo de las guitarras de mis tíos y sus voces armonizando con la melodía de mi abuela; el alboroto de niños alegres bailando al compás de los cantos; el ritmo inconsistente de mi propia guitarra, retrasando el pulso de los demás, porque yo estaba aprendiendo a tocar; el ladrido de los perros y el mugir de las vacas acompañando desde lejos nuestra música. Este disco es un homenaje a esos tiempos, a la sala de mi abuela - mi primera “escuela” de música - , a la vida en el campo, y al país que me reveló la magia y belleza de la vida en familia y de las tradiciones.
released November 10, 2017
This recording was made as part of Women's Audio Mission's Local Sirens & Preserving Culture projects, made possible by the generous support of The California Arts Council and The Zellerbach Family Foundation.
Musicians involved in this project: Patrick Wolff - clarinet on 2, 4, 6 tenor saxophone on 3. Altagracia Estupiñan (mi madre) - vocals on 10. Magik*Magik string quartet on 9,10: Liana Berube/1st violin, Philip Brezina/2nd violin, Marcel Gemperli/viola, Michelle Kwon/cello) directed by Minna Choi. Thomas Edler - upright bass on 12. Helen Newby - cello on 1. Danny Cao - trumpet on 12. Andrew Maguire - vibraphone on 1. Leonarda Rentería (mi abuela) - vocals on 7.
Vocals, acoustic guitar and piano by Diana Gameros. All songs arranged by Diana Gameros except 9 and 10, string arrangements by Minna Choi.
Recorded and mixed at Women’s Audio Mission in San Francisco, CA. Recording and mixing engineer: Kelley Coyne assisted by WAM’s P E Allan, Nora McDonough, Maira Clancy, June Hong, Meradith Hoddinott, Sarouna Msa, and Angela Sarakan. Production and Artistic Direction: Diana Gameros. Mastering engineer: Piper Payne in Oakland, CA.