REVIEWS & YOUTUBES
INDIGENOUS INSTRUMENTS OF MEXICO/MESOAMERICA
"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
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!"
ARMANDO CASTELLANO - 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
Bakersfield, CA 93311-1099
"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
INDIGENOUS INSTRUMENTS 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
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
music for arco musical/musical bow
new compostions for indigenous instruments of Mexico/Mesoamerica and woodwind quintet
QUINTETO LATINO and MEXIKA