I have failed to mention many of the other bands DC has played with recently, and now I must apologise to one in particular: Vallejo. I had not sat through their set before, for whatever reasons on the past, and Saturday down in Houston, at Fitzgerald's, they really impressed the heck out of me. They were tight, unique, obviously well-practiced, and far more talented than too many who have landed the big contracts of late. this might be a good lesson to Del Castillo too: Vallejo had a contract with Sony. It took getting out of it for them to start seeing some recognition. These guys have had a hit down in New Zealand. Just goes to show that the big companies are not always necessary, or looking out for one's best interests. This is a money making business and that is what they are out to do, damn the little guy either way.
Whatever, eh? Listen though- if Vallejo should be playing in your neck of the woods, catch them. Very impressive. I am sorry that pop bands like Los Lonely Boys get all the media attention when there is such talent to be found elsewhere. Vallejo is loads tighter musically and more interesting in their writing. Of course, after 5 albums and more tours, maybe LLBs will have grown too- we'll see.
Some of the other bands of note to mention include Akustica (I think I spelled that right...) and my aforementioned Toumai. Those guys are really talented, but have been absent of late from any place I have been to. I hope it doesn't mean they called it quits. Grupo Fantasma was tremendous, very lively and highly dancable, though with the horn section, I was glad to have seen them outside! Would probably get a little loud for even this old headbanger indoors.
I just had to make mention of Vallejo. Check them out on their site: www.vallejomusic.com.
They are well worth the effort!