Musica Nortena: Mexican Americans Creating a Nation Between by Catherine Ragland

By Catherine Ragland

M?sica norte?a, a musical style with its roots within the folks ballad traditions of Northern Mexico and the Texas-Mexican border quarter, has turn into a highly renowned musical type within the united states, fairly between Mexican immigrants. that includes evocative songs approximately undocumented border-crossers, drug traffickers, and the plight of immigrant employees, m?sica norte?a has develop into the song of a “nation among nations.” M?sica Norte?a is the 1st definitive heritage of this transnational track that has came across huge, immense advertisement luck in norteam?rica. Cathy Ragland, an ethnomusicologist and previous track critic, serves up the interesting fifty-year tale of m?sica norte?a, enlivened via interviews with very important musicians and her personal first-hand observations of stay musical performances. past calling our recognition to musical impacts, Ragland indicates readers the social and monetary forces at paintings at the back of the song. through evaluating m?sica norte?a with different well known musical varieties, together with conjunto tejano, she is helping us comprehend and savour the musical ties that bind the Mexican diaspora.

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Extra info for Musica Nortena: Mexican Americans Creating a Nation Between Nations (Studies In Latin America & Car)

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Díaz was merciless in his campaigns to quash any peasant uprisings, particularly in northern Mexico and close to the border. 2 Map of Spanish territories showing missions, presidios (penitentiaries), and roads that established the northern reach of New Spain during the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. (Adapted from Herbert E. Bolton, Texas in the Middle Regional Identity, Class, and the Emergence of “Border Music” / 33 The Texas-Mexican border folklorist and musicologist Américo Paredes notes that Díaz was concerned with the border early on in his presidency and dispatched tyrannical rurales (created in the image of the Texas Rangers) to keep peasants and laborers incapacitated (1958, 135).

Norteña music has perpetuated this immigrant notion of mexicanidad through songs that invoke solidarity and collective identity by means of musical documentations of “real life” immigrant experiences and both documented and fictive exploits of the modern-day border cowboy, the narcotraficante. S. Latino popular music industry, albeit via strikingly independent and individualistic means. Norteña’s popularity and dissemination throughout an expanding Mexican diaspora has been fueled by the ability of the immigrants in this community to imagine themselves as Mexican no matter where they have settled.

Furthermore, native Spanish-speaking populations in this area (many of whom were descended from Spanish, rather than Mexican, settlers) campaigned to be accepted as “American” and lobbied to distance themselves from what they considered to be “lowerclass” immigrants (Gutiérrez 1999, 129). Such attitudes set the stage for longenduring class- and race-based divisions in Texas and the lower Rio Grande Valley, an agriculturally fertile area that borders Mexico. In this region and among the Mexican migrant workers who were forced to leave their villages and families for work “en el otro lado” (on the other side) the traditional border corrido and the accordion/bajo sexto–based norteña ensemble first came together.

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