Performers Returning to Live Music Capital in March and April
Austin, Texas – It’s no surprise to any conjunto fan that the Rancho Alegre Conjunto Festival, the biggest conjunto festival in Austin’s history, was a major success. The message that Austin loves conjunto music came through loud and clear in terms of attendance and enthusiasm the first weekend of February. The dancefloor was packed each day and U.S. Representative (and conjunto fan) Lloyd Doggett was even on hand on Saturday to join in the festivities. The festival was also streamed live on stickam.com for conjunto fans everywhere to enjoy, courtesy of festival partner Compadresmusic.com.
The big question that everyone asked was, “when is the next one?”
In response to this overwhelming support of conjunto music in the Live Music Capital, Rancho Alegre Promotions is bringing back several of the performers from the festival for dates in March and in April for the beginning of its Puro Conjunto Dances. Both shows will take place at the Moose Lodge, 2103 EM Franklin Ave, in East Austin.
Saturday, March 3rd – “El Gambler” Joe Gonzales, Conjunto Calidad, and Thoze Guyz
Saturday, April 7th – Chano Cadena y Su Conjunto
Tickets: $10 pre-sale, at Estrada’s Cleaners, 2618 E. 7th Street or online, or $12 at the door.
The festival was historic. The lineup boasted a mix of legendary performers like Bene Medina, Oscar Hernandez, Los Aguilares, Rene Joslin, Chano Cadena, Jesse y Beto Duran y Los Aguilillas and Linda Escobar (who brought special guest bajo sexto master Juan P. Moreno), Austin keepers of the conjunto flame Los Pinkys and Los Texas Wranglers, and well-received newer conjuntos like Smiley y La Fuerza Musical, “El Gambler” Joe Gonzales, Conjunto Calidad, and Thoze Guyz.
For a couple of the groups, their performances at the festival were even more special. Rene Joslin’s set marked his return to the stage, having not performed or recorded in over 15 years. Surrounded by his family, he lit up the stage and played like no time had passed. For Austin legends Jesse y Beto Duran y Los Aguilillas, this was their very last performance together after retiring 7 years ago. Their stellar, emotional and passionate performance was well attended by their entire family.
Austin record stores continued to show their support for Texas music by welcoming conjunto groups for in-store performances and adding more conjunto music to their inventories. Austin’s own Susan Torres y Conjunto Clemencia kicked things off at Waterloo Records on Friday, Feb. 3rd, along with a special acoustic set by Tina y Grupo Tormenta from San Antonio. Saturday afternoon, Feb. 4th, the legendary Chano Cadena delighted the music-loving crowd at Antone’s Record Shop, responding to audience requests for redovas, polkas and other classics.
The festival also garnered significant attention from the median, with in-depth interviews in the Austin American-Statesman and The Blackland Reporter, a blurb in the Austin Chronicle, live shots during the morning show on YNN, and appearances on Eddie Arevalo’s Spotlite Show with Pete Diaz and Fiesta Musical with Isidoro Lopez.
The festival would not have happened and would not have been successful without the amazing support of Jesse Colunga and the members of the Moose Lodge, Julian Fernandez of Los Texas Wranglers, Oscar and Dulcez Martinez, and Rolando Medina.