REVIEWS & YOUTUBES
"When I met Christopher García a couple of years ago, as he rehearsed
and played one of his pieces for ancestral Mexican percussion instruments and wind quintet, I rediscovered something I had somehow lost track of throughout the years: a musician rooted in the rituals of magical performance.
Beyond the external aspects of power, virtuosity or any other relative term of comparison, there was something unique coming across, akin to a religious experience, through his beats and rhythms.
I think Christopher is definitely on the path of connecting
the objects he strikes or shakes with the deeper currents of the soul.
That's what I felt when he played;
he's not only resuscitating old instruments,
he's on a different search."
COMPOSER PAUL DESENNE
"Tonight we celebrate various master composers in the history of Mexican music. We open with the classic SINFONIA INDIA composed by Carlos Chavez in 1935
We present it with the original concept of Chavez’s first performances of the piece, using a battery of ancient and
contemporary indigenous instruments from Mesmaoermca and Mexico.
To accomplish this, we invited Christopher Garcia, a virtuoso musician who specializes in Aztec, Mayan, and other indigenous musics from Mesoamerica.
He has loaned us his instruments for the performance and has instructed our Philharmonia students performance technique on these unique instruments.
Special Thanks to
Christopher Garcia for his invaluable assistance
in the preparation of this performance."
UCLA CHAIR OF GLOBAL JAZZ STUDIES;
ETHNOMUSICOLOGY, GLOBAL JAZZ STUDIES
"The recording was beautiful....subtle tones and colors, visionary most definitely. Great artists who walk their own path is what I most admire and courage....onward and upward in LIFE and MUSIC.."
RA KALAM BOB MOSES
"While he has devoted much of his life to learning indigenous music Garcia also revels in playing the new and unexpected…..Garcia's musical vocabulary not only spans centuries and cultures it's also spontaneous."
GERMANYS INTERNATIONAL BROADCASTER
"RESONANCIA, the new album from Christopher Garcia's ORQUESTA INDIGENA, lives up to the name on every level -- sound, spirit, and concept. The low drum vibrations can make you feel the heartbeat of a sleeping dragon. The high rattles can sound like a dance of skeleton elves. The wooden and clay flutes raise images of ancient Mesoamerican temples, while some of the female vocalizings draw you inside a cathedral -- and if you've been in a Mexican or Peruvian cathedral, you know how thoroughly the invaders' religion was transformed by indigenous influences..... Some of the beats even carry the universality of the blues. We hear calls to action, the threat of war, a reverence for peace......."
SAN MIGUEL DE ALLENDE, MX
“The multifaceted musician, Christopher García is a renowned composer, multiple instrumentalist and improviser, originally from Los Angeles, California, with a long and brilliant career in the musical interpretation of the original peoples of the world. He has given concerts in dozens of countries and has a deep knowledge of the indigenous instruments of America, which he plays with mastery and inspiration. Diverse percussions, wind instruments, and songs of the soul that connect us directly with the Earth.”
NEWS SAN MIGUEL
MEXICO CITY, MX
"Christopher Garcia is frequently invited as a soloist with symphony and chamber orchestras in Europe and America's to play instruments that are rarely associated with music. of the European tradition including TlapanHuehuetl, Teponaztli, Huilacapiztli and Atecocolli from Mesoamerica, alongside tabla from North India, kanjira, and ghatam from South India...."
TIEMPO LIBRE MAGAZINE ARTE Y CULTURA EN MEXICO
“The music this gentleman creates is organic, while at the same time being virtuosic, and compelling on many different levels....Garcia's compositions combine musical sonorities and timbres of the ancients with the present to create new resonances, timbres, and sonorities previously unimagined…”
PERFORMING ARTS LIVE
"Christopher Garcia is a critically acclaimed as a composer, and virtuosic improviser on instruments not usually associated with just one musician including drumset, marimba, and instruments of north and south India and breath, string and percussion instruments of Mesoamerica, in every music combination possible - Avant, classical, folkloric, indigenous, jazz, rock, and world, with a virtual who’s who of musicians with performances in 28 countries on 5 continents."
ATENCION SAN MIGUEL ALLENDE
"the man understands the art of drumming) tight, flawless and full of passion, he goes on in his solo and then seamlessly continues.
Very very good."
DUTCH PUBLIC BROADCASTING
"Christopher Garcia is a native of East Los Angeles, who attended the California Institute of the Arts in 1979 and continues to compose, improvise, concertize, lecture, and share his personal experiences with indigenous music, instruments, culture, and culture bearers, and history of Mesoamerica at universities and concert halls worldwide along with the physiological effects of music, rhythm, and drumming which continue to be validated daily through neuroscience, confirming the information left to us by the ancients....."
OTIS ARTS INSTITUTE
"We continue to commemorate our ancestors, this time, in a special way with a concert by Christopher García, a multifaceted musician who visits the Botanical Garden to awaken our senses with ancestral musical instruments...."
JARDIN BOTANICO CHARCO DEL INGENIO SAN MIGUEL DE ALLENDE,
“with the help of Professor Steven Loza we are luckiy to have found a musician who owns these instruments in Los Angeles, and is an expert at playing and teaching them, so I would like to thank Professor Chris Garcia, he was responsible also to help us prepare this piece together for the percussion section”
CONDUCTOR BRUNO NASCIMIENTO UCLA SYMPHONY
"Chris Garcia is a multifaceted master musician that has the unique gift of becoming one with the instruments he is playing thus sharing the vibrations with those present. His knowledge and respect for the ancient instruments he plays allow him to bring to life their ancestral tones and rhythms. Anyone fortunate to be a part of this experience will be blessed with an experience they'll never forget."
JERRY TELLO, NATIONAL COMPADRES NETWORK
"In a dynamic blend of tradition and modernity, composer and musician
Christopher Garcia performs original compositions using indigenous breath,
string and percussion instruments
of Mesoamerica and Mexico"
LOS ANGELES PUBLIC LIBRARY
This LA Made programs are made possible
with the generous support of the
National Endowment for the Humanities.
GARCIA GODINEZ DUO
"Christopher Garcia knows where the deep water runs …. crouched over a floor arrayed with nonstandard instruments: water drums, hand drums, a couple of gongs, a tawitol, a couple of slate slabs that looked as if the Ten Commandments might've been etched on them….at one point Garcia removed the gourd resonator from a water drum, scooped water into it and poured it back into the base -- water into water……
The tacit acknowledgment of eternal cycles marked one more reason why we sat so quietly, hearing and feeling things words can't express.”
METAL JAZZ .com
"Garcia's compositions reflect a lifelong pursuit to put himself in the most creative musical situations possible with percussion and breath instruments he has learned along with performance practices, musical vernaculars, sounds and music which he has been immersed in since 1979 to the present. Gleaned thru rehearsals, performances, compositions and research, and sitting across from learning and/or playing alongside great musicians from various musical cultures
(he has over 1200 performance in 29 countries on 5 continents).
His music resonates organically, and never seems contrived or slapped together as he draws from the rich color of sounds at his disposal, and where and how he chooses to place the silences within and around his compositions and performances. His music has a rhythmic complexity that propels and co exists with memorable melodies that tie the pieces together - combining and extending traditions his is a unique voice in the tradition of composer/performer/improviser with instruments not generally associated with the instruments of the western "classical world".
"The interaction between the members of the Garcia Godinez Duo, comprised by harpist Tasha Smith-Godinez and renaissance man and multi-percussionist Chris Garcia, is full
of flare, poise and bravura; it defies the listener at every moment as the duo provides dynamic and bold concoctions, instead of the expected polite and amicable conversations.
As an ensemble, this duo offers infinite possibilities as its members are exuberant and facile even in the most treacherous of passages. I cannot wait to compose music for them"
Jose Gurria DMA 13'
Composer, drummer, arranger, educator
"We were fortunate to have the Garcia Godinez Duo perform at Westerbeck Recital Hall
at Pasadena City College Center for the Arts. This duo features the pedal harp performed
by Tasha Smith Godinez and Christopher Garcia playing a variety of indigenous percussion
instruments from Mexico. Christopher Garcias's original compositions featuring these unusual
instruments were performed brilliantly. This combining of Western pedal harp with indigenous Mexican instruments is a new and creative approach in the World Music scene."
WESTERBECK RECITAL HALL
PASADENA CITY COLLEGE
INFINITE EXPANSION OF SOUND
"The silence they make is almost as deafening as the SOUND they created and now they are playing so quietly that we can hear each other breathe and IXONEZTLI starts speaking, (in tongues??) not quite sure. Imagine the Art Ensemble of Chicago meets Weather Report and instead of improvisers with a jazz background, these guys share a palette of Meso American instruments, culture and ancestral symbology.
The MUSIC, the SOUND and THE SILENCE are relentless, and they play non stop for 70 minutes or so as we are taken thru a roller coaster of emotions with each transition. "
"There's really nothing like it, these gentlemen have done their homework, they know about music from all over the world and they have taken from different cultures and then let the instruments speak to them, how they want to be played and make these EXPERIENCES, it's not even music it's an EXPERIENCE, sometimes you don't even hear it, you just feel it. This is magical stuff"
KPFK's GLOBAL VILLAGE
"an innovative, eclectic, and intimate navigation and exploration of rarely charted musical waters, sharing a profound reverence and appreciation for deep musical traditions while enjoying the fruits of an open-minded and remarkable musical chemistry. "
OPEN GATE THEATER
"Garcia and Rajchenberg are a multi cultural musical match. Rajchenberg plays the strings - from a guitar to a South American charango and a requinto jarocho. The evenings program will feature modern compositions the duo have written that give their ancient instruments new life. Their set transcends time.... from a song about Buddha to a melancholy melody that pays homage to the 43 students who went missing in Iguala Mexico last year."
"Combining elements of indigenous music of Mexico and South America into a contemporary language, Jxel Rajchenberg and Christopher Garcia take their audience on an unchartered journey. With a musical vocabulary that spans centuries and cultures and a deep respect for tradition, they spontaneously bring the voices of their ancient instruments into modern times."
"the music these two gentleman create is organic, while at the same time being virtuosic, and compelling on many different levels. Garcia and Rajchenberg continue to draw on a number of musical AND cultural traditions in a seamless manner as each member shares a deep history of traveling, composing and performing with musicians from various cultures ………..
MEXCLA'S performances and interactions are virtuosic, to say the least, and both seem to be able to have their instruments take on different responsibilities throughout their performance - rhythm, melody and harmonic roles are tossed back and forth without letting you become aware that this is what they are doing.
Is it MAGIC?
Or is it MUSIC?
Or is it both as has been claimed by KPFK's Global Village John Schneider.
Many years ago these terms where interchangeable, and MEXCLA MUZIC
takes us back to a time and place within ourselves utilizing instruments of various cultures in an organic way to remind us of who and what we once were before radio, television, cassettes, vcrs, dvds, mp3s became our entertainment.
When the only soundtrack to our lives was our own heartbeat, breath and the songs our mothers and elders sang to us as children.
If you have not made an opportunity to experience this, you should!"
NUEVO MUNDOS MEXICA/AZTECAS
"Christopher Garcia, plays indigenous instruments such as
turtle shells and clay flutes in the production of LA VIRGEN
DE GUADALUPE, DIOS INANTZIN........The East L.A. native
travels the world with different ensembles but clears his calendar each December to take part in the cathedral's annual presentation."
LOS ANGELES TIMES
"We’re most grateful to our good friend - and superb musician - Christopher García, a Los Angeles based percussionist who plays indigenous percussion instruments in various settings e.g., traditional, symphonic and world musics, and a keen historian who is not only a highly talented and creative musician but a studious researcher on the indigenous music of Mexico, for creating this wonderful video.......
"Quinteto Latino’s collaboration was a very special event for us. From playing conch shells in the opening ceremony, to performing surrounded by the sounds of ancient percussion, our collaboration was amazing.
A wealth of information about the historical Latin American languages and music with us and our audiences, and the music that resulted from our collaboration was very moving. We were all surprised by the audience’s immediate, visceral reaction. This music really touched people. The whole experience was fantastic and we look forward to further collaboration with them!"
QUINTETO LATINO MUSIC DIRECTOR
"Percussionist Chris Garcia nearly stole the show with his musical antics, playing the cajon with a bare ankle, slapping cymbals with his hands, sending chipped bits of his mallets
flying into the air, and even using his body as a percussion instrument."
SAN FRANCISCO CLASSICAL VOICE
"I must tell you what a pleasure it was to get to know you and your passion and art. I think I learned more than anyone these last few days. Thanks for all the counsel and advice; I will treasure and learn from it.
Jerome S. Kleinsasser"
Professor of Music
California State University, Bakersfield
"When we learned that we were going to play the Symphony #1 (Sinfonía India) by Carlos Chavez, we spent a long time and a lot of research in vain trying to find just the right sounds. Thanks to the beautiful instruments provided by Christopher
García and Martín Espino, our percussion section was able to play Sinfonía India with a level of integrity and informed authenticity that would otherwise have been lacking.
Using these wonderful instruments on this particular concert was especially exciting as hundreds of young scholars from all parts of California attended that special Academic
Ernie Cervantes, Principal Percussionist
Bakersfield Symphony Orchestra
OF MEXICO AND MESOAMERICA
in traditional and contemporary settings
the instruments continue to show their resilience in contemporary settings as they are from time immemorial
with LUIS PEREZ IXONEZTLI
indigenous instruments of Mexico goes
further back then MEXICA/AZTECA
the TRIPLE ALLIANCE took place 1428
there are images in MesoAmerica which go
back to 100 B.C., of the same instruments being played
Luis Perez IXONEZTLI continues to distill his experiences
thru his music making
and I am blessed to be asked to be a part of his palette
new compostions for indigenous breath, string, and percussion instruments of Mexico/Mesoamerica with XOCHICUICATL
new compostions for indigenous instruments of Mexico/Mesoamerica and woodwind quintet
QUINTETO LATINO & Christopher Garcia
new compostions for indigenous instruments of Mexico/Mesoamerica and piano forte with
Pablo Lenero Archer of Mexico City @
SANTA MONICA PERFORMING ARTS CENTER
new compostions for indigenous instruments of Mexico/Mesoamerica and piano forte with
Pablo Lenero Archer of Mexico City performance in Mexico City
with MEXICA/AZTECA drummers
celebrating the EQUINOX
new music composed for harp
and indigenous instruments of Mexico/Mesoamerica
premiered at EL CASTILLO DE CHAPULTEPEC in Mexico City, MX
performed by GARCIA GODINEZ DUO
new music composed for harp
and indigenous instruments of Mexico/Mesoamerica
WESTERBECK RECITAL HALL in PASADENA, CA USA
music for arco musical/musical bow
the following was shot by Jim Santi Owen
at the CENTER FOR NEW MUSIC in
San Francisco, CA, USA