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Singer-Songwriter Jose Gonzalez Plays La Trastienda

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32486josegonzalez.jpgJose Gonzalez is talking to the crowd. He’s funny and entertaining and obviously at ease. As a fan of the Swedish singer-songwriter, who has seen him in concert a few times, I ask myself, “Is this the same artist who performs in monosyllables to solemn, packed houses?” I wonder, “Is it his new look?” His hair has undergone a dramatic change that makes him look all the more Argentine. For reasons beyond his long curls, I decide that it’s Argentina making the difference for this Swede of Mendoza heritage.

Zizek Brings Hip Hop and Cumbia Mashups to Niceto in Palermo Hollywood

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zizek.jpgMore than a weekly party and underground hip hop hub, Zizek is a movement in Buenos Aires. Zizek is the Wednesday night party thrown by What’s Up Buenos Aires and DJ Villa Diamante at Niceto, now in its second year. It gets going around midnight and it’s where Buenos Aires’ cumbia, dub, reggaeton, and hip hop crowd goes out to be seen.

Zizek, the party, was named after a philosopher, Slavoj Zizek – apparently because he’s a well-known Slovenian academic who married an Argentine model (?). It’s a weekly that includes live cumbia and South American rap acts along with resident deejays and their guests. Villa Diamante is a resident, Zurita makes appearances as does El Remolon, Daleduro, Oro11, and Marcelo Fabian. These are the members of Buenos Aires’ default rat pack of hip hop/ cumbia/ reggaeton – call it what you will they bring the street to the club.

Manu Chao’s Unusual Concert in Buenos Aires

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Manu Chao in Buenos AiresLast week in Buenos Aires, Manu Chao joined La Colifata for a live radio broadcast. La Colifata is the radio station run by patients at the Borda Hospital – a psychiatric hospital. There was a rumor that he’d be playing a live show at the hospital, and since he’s done it once before during a visit to Buenos Aires, it seemed worth checking out.

Buenos Aires Music Festival – Personal Fest 2007

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crowd-shot-snoop.jpgPersonal Fest is Argentina’s answer to California’s Coachella or England’s Reading. Sponsored by Personal, a wireless service, it featured local bands like No Lo Soporto and international names like Fischerspooner. It also brought in some big names like Chris Cornell, The Happy Mondays, Tego Calderon, and Snoop Dogg.

Festival Buen Dia – Alternative Music in Buenos Aires

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buen-dia-planetario.thumbnail.jpgIf you’re looking for corn tortillas in Buenos Aires, good luck finding them. But if you’re looking for good new music, that’s a whole other story. The city is loaded with music venues of all sizes and it’s the site of several music festivals as well.

One such event is Festival Buen Dia, an annual gathering of alterno bands which took place Saturday, December 15 at the Planetarium in Palermo. The festival used to be held in Palermo Viejo but outgrew the neighborhood. This year’s line-up included Juana Molina, girrrl rockers Las Kellies, psychedelic jammers Banda de Turistas, and the reliable sounds of the well-dressed ensemble Rosal.