Mexican music in Chile

María José Quintanilla, a Chilean singer of ranchera.

Mexican music enjoys widespread popularity in some social and geographic sectors of Chile. In particular, Mexican music is especially popular among Chilean rural lower classes.[1] Geographically, Mexican music is most popular in south-central Chile, but there are also significant audiences elsewhere, such as in the northern city of La Serena.[2] Mexican corridos commonly perform in Chilean national-day celebrations of Fiestas Patrias.[3][4]

Mexican music as understood in Chile is norteño music, a series of styles that originated in the rural world of the northern half of Mexico. The corrido and ranchera genres of norteño music in particular are referred as "Mexican music" in Chile.[5]

Among the annual Mexican music festivals in Chile are the Festival del Cantar Mexicano Guadalupe del Carmen in Chanco, Festival Internacional de la Voz de la Música Mexicana de Puyehue in Puyehue, and Festival del Cantar Popular Mexicano in La Serena.[2]

Origins [ edit ]

It is thought that Mexican music gained popularity, even in remote areas of Chile, through radio stations and Mexican movies.[3] The first Chilean interpreters of Mexican music appeared in the 1940s,[5] and by the time of Jorge Negrete's visit to Chile in 1946, Los Queretaros and many other ensembles specializing in Mexican music were thriving.[6] Musicologist Laura Jordán González comments that "music listening practices in Chile have extensively shown a preference for foreign music, which has been explained by some authors as a result of successive non-protectionist policies".[6]

Radio stations specializing in Mexican music are common in Chile. They may play music from as early as six o'clock in the morning, when farmers begin their workday.[5] Typically, broadcasts of Mexican music on these radio stations continue well into midnight.[5] In the 1950s and 1960s, non-specialized radio stations such as Radio Yungay and Radio Agricultura created programs dedicated to Mexican music.[5] According to lifelong Mexican music collector Fernando Méndez, the popularity of Mexican music was helped by similar music in Chilean and Mexican culture, such as the equivalence of the charro with the huaso.[5]

[Chile and Mexico were in the 1940s] nations with similar agricultures, in both countries people worked from sunrise to sunset, and there was a taste for horses

Spanish original: [En la década de 1940, Chile y México] eran naciones con agriculturas similares, en los países se trabajaba de sol a sol, y había un gusto por los caballos

— Fernando Méndez[5]

1970s to the present [ edit ]

As Mexican music gained ground in Chile by the 1970s, the popularity of the corrido was considered to be on par with the local cueca,[3] a local genre regarded typically Chilean and promoted by the Pinochet dictatorship.[5] As happened in many aspects of Chilean society, Mexican music became politicized in the 1970s.[5] Jorge Inostroza, a prominent radio host and promoter of Mexican music, alienated much of his audience with his public support of the Pinochet dictatorship.[5] The military dictatorship sought to isolate Chilean radio listeners from the outside world by changing radio frequency to middle wavelengths.[5] This, together with the shutdown of radio stations sympathetic to the former Allende administration, affected listening to Mexican music in Chile.[5] The installment of the dictatorship coincided with the closing of record shops selling Mexican music.[5]

However, Chilean exiles in Spain and Mexico supplied their relatives in Chile with records of Mexican music.[5] A scarcity of Mexican music records is thought to have contributed to the creation of the local recording company Sol de América and the pirate cassette brand Cumbre y Cuatro, both of which catered to Mexican music enthusiasts.[5] Elements of the Chilean military distrusted Mexican music, leading to cases where the music was denounced as "communist".[5] The military's dislike of Mexican music may be rooted in the Allende administration's close links with Mexico, the "Mexican revolutionary discourse", and the overall low prestige of Mexican music in Chile.[5] The dictatorship never suppressed Mexican music as a whole, as distinctions were made between different currents, some of which were actually promoted.[5]

Among the Chilean upper class, Mexican music has gained more acceptance since the 2000s. In part, this trend is explained by the popularity of the musical talent show Rojo Fama contra Fama on TVN, which aired for the first time in 2002.[5] María José Quintanilla in particular gained acclaim on the program by singing ranchera songs.[5]

References [ edit ]

  1. ^ Domic Kuscevic, Lenka (2000). "Geografía y literatura. Una aproximación metodológica". Estudios de Humaninades y Ciencias Sociales (in Spanish). 6: 51–54.
  2. ^ a b Wright, Julio (2015-08-17). "La música mexicana también juega de local en el norte chileno". La Jornada Baja California (in Spanish). Retrieved 2020-05-12.
  3. ^ a b c Dannemann, Manuel (1975). "Situación actual de la música folklórica chilena. Según el Atlas del Folklore de Chile". Revista Musical Chilena (in Spanish). 29 (131): 38–86.
  4. ^ Larraín, Jorge (2001). "Identidad chilena y globalización". Identidad Chilena (in Spanish). LOM ediciones. p. 270. ISBN 956-282-399-7.
  5. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t Montoya Arias, Luis Omar; Díaz Güemez, Marco Aurelio (2017-09-12). "Etnografía de la música mexicana en Chile: Estudio de caso". Revista Electrónica de Divulgación de la Investigación (in Spanish). 14: 1–20.
  6. ^ a b González, Laura Jordán (2019). "Chile: Modern and Contemporary Performance Practice". In Sturman, Janet (ed.). The SAGE International Encyclopedia of Music and Culture. SAGE Publications. p. 509. ISBN 978-1-4833-1775-5.

External links [ edit ]

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