Mexican Music: Otomi Brass Bands

In the indigenous Otomi communities of northern Veracruz, a musical transformation has taken place thanks to the efforts of Radio Huayacocotla.

Radio Huayacocotla, which broadcasts from its mountain top studio, records and plays the local brass bands on the air. This has had the effect of nurturing a local musical tradition that was in danger of being overwhelmed by popular commercial music. While traditional stringed groups still perform their huapangos, they have been joined by the local brass bands that now dominate the festivals like Carnaval and Santa Cecilia celebrated in the region.

Brass band music gained popularity in the 1860's when the French-backed Austrian Naval Commander, Archduke Ferdinand Maximillan, ruled Mexico. Brass bands are still popular in many parts or Mexico, but they have experienced a unique renaissance in this corner of the Huasteca.

en Espaņol