Caught by the River

Record Of The Week – Mexican Boleros

8th June 2007

“It was music, which millions of Latinos fell in love to, found pleasure in and cuckold others to: The Mexican Bolero. The rise began in Mexico City’s brothels, finding its prime in the Golden Thirties, when it conquered the whole continent with beautiful tear-jerking songs. The Amazonian jungle, the Argentinean pampas or the New York concert halls – everywhere the Bolero was paid homage to. It was the soundtrack to innumerable melodramas and shot gun movies, today’s Mexican TV Premiers would be unthinkable without its success. Still Bolero tear-jerkers never were mass productions, but compositions comparable to cut and polished diamonds: delicious, crafty and precipitous.

For the first time Trikont makes some of these legendary, Mexican shellac recordings available from Germany: the wicked hits of the brothel composer Augustin Lara, the anthems of the “tropical queen” Toña La Negra, the dark laments of the “tenor of the continents” Pedro Vargas, the ingenious falsetto works of art from the guitar trio “Los Tres Ases” and the songs of many other faded superstars.

This compilation is a sound trip through the dance-halls, cabarets and gangster’s dens of the sensual Mexico of the thirties, a trip through the emotional world of machos, masochists and love lunatics.” – Trikont.