Music

Family celebrates 80-year-old patriarch’s birthday with special gift — a website to sell his first album of música

Family celebrates 80-year-old patriarch’s birthday with special gift — a website to sell his first album of música

By Juan Miret
LatinaLista

Alfredo González has spent the vast part of his 80 years writing poetry. But his poetry wasn't for just putting 'rhyme and reason' to his feelings or how he saw life — but to make music.

Born in 1933 in the small town of Tuxcueca, Jalisco, Mexico, Alfredo was inspired to write his first poem at the age of 9 when he saw a payaso (clown). From that time on, this self-taught lyricist nurtured his love of writing and his hope of making music at the same time he was receiving his accounting degree in Guadalajara, moving to Sacramento, California, getting married, raising a family, working two jobs, sending his children to college and finally, retiring from work — but not his passion.

"I once asked my father where he got his inspiration for his lyrics and he told me about being a young boy and tending to the corn crops with his father," Alfredo's daughter, María Watts said. "Often they camped out at night and he would gaze at the cielo, las estrellas y la luna. He felt as if they could speak to him." Watts said. One of his songs, Luz de las Estrellas was written after being inspired by his wife's eyes.

Alfredo always knew his writing wasn't just a hobby. Over the years, his lyrics have won musical competitions. In 2000, he entered El Festival de la Canción Latino Americana de California in San Francisco. Out of 864 entrants, Alfredo’s song “Corrido a Jose Alfredo Jiminez” made it to the final 27 which were performed live in front of a large audience and jury. Alfredo won first place and Disco de Oro (Gold Record).

Yet, even with the awards and the validation that he had talent, Alfredo's lyrics remained in stacks of manila folders in his home where his children remembered their father safeguarding his dream. That's as far as Alfredo got with his goal of bringing his lyrics to life, until a few years ago when he surprised his family and had his poetry finally put to music and compiled on disc.

But again, the dream stalled.

Alfredo's ultimate wish has been to hear his music played on the radio. It's a dream he probably thought he was going to carry to his grave one day, but his family had other ideas.

alfredo

For his 80th birthday, his family has created a big surprise: A website where people can buy his album.

To promote the site, his family has embarked on a full-scale social media campaign. Alfredo has no idea about it. He will get the news on November 16, a few days after his November 11 birthday, so the entire family can be together and celebrate ... Latino style!

The full album won't be released until December but one single promoting the album is available now for only $1, Tuxcueca, Mi Tierra.

"The single is available now for purchase," explained Maria Watts. "When we surprise our dad, he can see that people are purchasing his music."

Hearing the album, buyers will discover that Alfredo composed a very special ode: Corrido a José Alfredo Jiménez, a song dedicated to the Mexican singing icon. Watts said that her father admired Jiménez "as a songwriter and considered him the best."

If Jiménez was his idol, then Jorge Negrete was his favorite singer, affirmed Watts, who shared an anecdote of her father who recalls every now and then that while watching a Negrete movie as a young boy, Camino de Sacramento, he used to tell himself that one day he would visit that Californian city. "And it has been home now since 1957!"

His admiration for Negrete has a special link with the song ¨Jalisco No Te Rajes," said Watts, but "his absolute favorite song is Pepe Guizar's "Guadalajara."

Watts predicts that her father will enjoy this surprise while eating his favorite food: Birria and repeating his mantra: "The beauty of your body is like the crystal of your life, because it reflects your soul and heart."

Juan Miret is a Tulsa, Oklahoma-based freelance writer whose work has appeared in various media outlets, as well as, at his own site Eñes and W’s.

Click to add a comment

You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Leave a Reply

Music

More in Music

960x540

Video: Documentary relives the night when a little mariachi scored a slam-dunk against racism

Latina ListaMay 28, 2015
n9-zwvMNOX1oLP2AFoIBioDaVGCKdlgi-qAbff5k3mk,oyNdm7tp96qCUmxWe_CPs6m7cmopQdvffhqflYU2QGg,ZrPQnZIzwidXAQbfTyjLLVGjLYTJRT7YP0zdBxCPqPY,ga3brrTMTV3TIsVe5EOjewmiZB--eca3XUwJebYIPnU

Video: Carlos Santana and Larry King – one-on-one

Latina ListaDecember 5, 2014
anthem

Mariachi music continues to grow in popularity and acceptance

Latina ListaMay 13, 2014
1453526_528047507290576_445803538_n

Rising Music Artist: From Buenos Aires to Queens, IMMI creates bilingual musical messages

Latina ListaApril 17, 2014
Ozomatli78243-2_PlaceInTheSun

Video: Ozomatli reaches out to fans through video series explaining inspiration behind new album

Latina ListaFebruary 27, 2014
tumblr_mtag0vVcLv1sgktroo1_1280

Intrn’l Video: New documentary exposes increasingly popular music subculture known as narcocorridos

Latina ListaDecember 4, 2013
6528430_orig

Video: Independent LA music show highlights the ‘little known but talented’ Latino musicians of the city

Latina ListaNovember 14, 2013
Screen shot 2013-09-18 at 3.02.43 PM

Intrn’l Video: British singing group features Bolivia’s Cholita wrestlers in first music video

Latina ListaSeptember 18, 2013
Musica-Latina-Graphic_wairdate_9-11-13.jpg__640x360_q85_crop_upscale-e1379363113738

White House kicks off Hispanic Heritage Month with livestream of Música Latina concert

Latina ListaSeptember 16, 2013