"In Panama, if someone is being racist we say: "Who is your Grandmother?", cause everyone's grandma is from somewhere. Someone's grandma is either Black or Native American somehow. It's a way of getting someone to stop being racist. For us, "Immigrants are Beautiful", is a way of saying lets participate in this reality."- Enrique Chi.
Making Movies is a band who is currently on their "Immigrants are Beautiful Tour" with a blue butterfly as the logo of the tour representing an immigrant's migration. This Afro-Latin rock band from Kansas City, Missouri is giving DACA recipients free tickets to their concerts, which is something bands don't usually do. It is something really special and it is necessary that people go and share this message of love with the band and fellow immigrants, cause WE ARE ALL IMMIGRANTS. When I first heard this band I was taken aback and I was immediately captivated by Enrique's (vocalist) voice and the instrumentals that followed it. It gave me the satisfaction and nostalgia of that when I am reading Cortazar and Neruda or when I am listening to Buena Vista Social Club and Centavrvs. I was really captivated from the first song and I have stopped listening since then.
This four member band consists of Diego Chi (bass guitar), Enrique Chi (vocals and guitar), Juan Carlos Chaurand (keyboard and percussions), and Andres Chaurand (drums). Making Movies has toured with several known bands and have collaborated with artists like Hurray for the Riff Raff, Alaina Moore and even Asdru Sierra. Making Movies decided to come to El Paso for the first time in order to promote their "Immigrants are Beautiful Tour". I asked them why they decided to call their tour like that and Enrique Chi answered, "it's kind of rejecting this fear based national media push. It's not just the media, but it's the White House and Donald Trump's Twitter account. It's rejecting that instigating fear. We look at the word immigrant in a more holistic way rather than the strict definition of it. We are talking about the human race as a whole. You know even going back to Mesopotamia and seeing how people have spread out. If I had been born a hundred years ago I would have been Colombian, but because of someone else's decisions and wanting to build a canal to make more money I am Panamanian. Does that change my make up as a human being, my soul, and spirit? No. We are all part of this human race".
I asked the band how they found their sound and Juan Carlos said that, "Enrique and Diego are Panamanian and Andres and I are Mexicanos and we dove in to the very grassroots music of where we come from. My brothers and I grew up dancing Folklorico and we brought that in as well." Enrique added that the roots of all music is from West Africa. He says he is not sure whether Afro-Latino is a great description of Making Movies, but he did add that "we can trace all rhythmic music from the Americas back to West Africa and the Yoruba rhythms."
"I Am Another You", which is a follow up of their previous album "A La Deriva", was produced by Steve Berlin of Los Lobos, whom the band considers their mentor. Enrique mentioned that Steve really helped the band "catch the spirit, which is Steve's way to describe that intangible thing". Now every time the band records something, they try to "catch the spirit".
Making Movies will release an EP December 1st called "You Are Another Me" and it consists of protest song covers and it is a companion to "I Am Another You". They made the album, not necessarily thinking politically, but it just happened. The band has released a few songs and they plan to release more. They are currently recording more songs, more often "just as a hip artist would". No matter how "fast" or how "slow" Making Movies releases a song, they really "catch the spirit" and they manage to crank out beautiful melodies with lyrics that caress it in a loving manner.
Making Movies plans on moving forward, playing, and expanding their tour. They hope to tour Mexico soon and record a new album.
After seeing them play live at the Lowbrow Palace in El Paso, Texas you can see each of their "spirits". You can tell they love being up there no matter the size of the crowd and that is something to admire in a band. I was just in awe and if one thinks that they sound good on CD, just wait until you hear them live. They will captivate you from beginning to end.
I want to thank the band for their time and listed below are all their social media handles:
FB: Making Movies
Twitter: Making Movies
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