Mexican youth help spawn new music craze to counter drug culture
Similar to other countries, Mexico sees it's fair share of crime each year, despite officials' best attempts to quell the rate of violence on city streets and within communities. While these safety concerns are important to address and require 100 percent effort from locals committed to tamping down disorderly conduct, many Mexicans have been able to counter crime. They've done this through song and dance, effectively recommitting themselves to what makes up a significant component of Mexican culture.
According to Highbrow Magazine, many Mexican youth have turned to music to air their frustrations about the rate of violence in the country, particularly in Ciudad Juarez. While music serves as the vehicle in which to impart what these youth feel about the high rate of crime, what their most concerned about is that their message gets through to those who listen loud and clear. That's because these youth have developed a new genre of music called "Nueva Ola Fronteriza," or new border wave.
What gives the genre its distinction is how it differs from some of the genres that are in vogue today. The magazine notes that several types of music, such as "Narco Corridos," or drug ballads, foolishly sensationalize the illegal narcotics culture in Mexico, which is further exacerbated by drug cartels that mass produce and sell them.
The wholesome, positive message emanating from nueva ola fronteriza has helped make some bands in Mexico household names. Highbrow Magazine reports that Maldita Vecindad has become so popular that major advertisers now send money to the band members when they promote their products.
Music industry professionals believe new genre is built to last
The ultimate goal of bands like Maldita Vecindad and Pajaros Sin Alas – roughly translated as Birds Without Wings – is to replace the narco corrido genre with nueva ola fronteriza, not only in Mexico, but throughout the world. The magazine notes how since 2004, bands that sing songs glamorizing the drug culture in Mexico have gained somewhat of a following in the United States. In fact, the genre produces an estimated $300 million per year for the music industry in Mexico, according to estimates from the BBC. Los Angeles is perhaps the drug ballad genre's largest market. Los Tigres – a popular band whose songs fall into this classification – sold 500,000 copies in the U.S. after the release of its latest album, many of which were in California's most-populous city.
Officials are hopeful that the glory days for these bands that sensationalize drug use are numbered, as already, stadiums that were once filled with people celebrating narco corrido are now brimming with people swaying to the tunes of the new border wave genre, Highbrow Magazine reports.
Dancing and music are emblematic of Mexican and Latino culture. Recently, Latino Appreciation Day was celebrated in Salt Lake City, Utah at the Capitol Building. One of the ways in which the city recognized the occasion was through a performance done by Viva El Folklore, who went through an elaborate dance routine in front of dozens of Utahns on March 13.
Latino music, of course, isn't confined to Mexico. Variations on the genre are found throughout South America, especially in Brazil. According to Fox News Latino, with Brazil hosting the 2016 Summer Olympics, there's been a renewed sense of interest in Brazilian music throughout the world, led by popular artists like Lucenzo, Taio Cruz, Jarina De Marco and Nelly Furtado.