San Francisco’s LoCura have a new album out entitled Semilla Caminante (Travelling Seed). This exciting group of diverse musicians mix rumba flamenca, Cuban rhythms, cumbia, and ska together in a brand they’ve dubbed ‘Califas Flamenkito’. LoCura is fronted by Katalina Miletich who grew up in Spain before eventually visiting Angel’s Camp in California. Soon after arriving, she found herself at loose ends and wasn’t sure where to go next. One night, Katalina found herself at a wild party with a band playing in crazy costumes. Before long, Katalina grabbed a mic and started free-styling in Spanish, although she had never done any singing or songwriting in her life. The band asked her to join on the spot. Guitarist and bassist Bob Sanders was playing in the band that night and he had been hooked on flamenco music from an early age. Sanders and Miletich struck up a close musical friendship and relocated to the Bay Area. The bohemian life there and the outspoken Latino arts community was very inspirational to Sanders and Miletich. They played packed art spaces and Occupy camps with bike-powered speakers. It didn’t take long before they met up with Flamenco dancer Stephanie Narvaez, renegade klezmer/reggae bassist Izzy, “el Rumbero de la Mission” Sergio Duran, San Francisco native and trumpeter extraordinaire Danny Cao, and, most recently, drummer Carrie Jahde. This incredible mix of musicians broadened LoCura’s sound into something that transcends borders.
“We mix everything from funk to son cubano into our own songs, to show how diverse our communities have become and to show the common roots these different styles have. Semilla Caminante, the idea of ‘traveling seed,’ is a reminder of this movement, this interchange, and of the creative resistance that continues to transform our lives and is tangible in our musical expressions.” – Katalina Miletich
Semilla Caminante is the group’s sophomore album. The record finds inspiration in ida y vuelta, the notion in flamenco of musical forms that have traveled to the New World and returned transformed. There’s no doubt that LoCura have formed their own unique mix of music, taking snippets from many different cultures. The band has grown from a trio to a seven piece ensemble. They have shared the stage with such visionaries as Ziggy Marley and Beats Antique. LoCura have sold out venues such as The Great American Music Hall and The Independent, so get your tickets early as the band embarks on their first major West Coast tour. For dates, see LoCura’s website. To get a sample of this great band, watch the video for Guerriller@s below.