CHULAS FRONTERAS

Süße Grenzen

Les Blank
USA 1976 | 58 Min. | 16 mm, OF

Die Musik des Rio Grande-Valleys, Conjunto, Tex-Mex oder Música Norteña genannt – ist eine energievolle Musik mit dem diatonischen Knopfakkordeon und dem treibenden Bass des bajo sexto, einer übergroßen 12-seitigen Gitarre. In Interviews mit Landarbeitern, Musikern und Disk-Jockeys geht Blank den politischen Untertönen der Musik nach und zeigt den wichtigen Platz, den diese Musik im Alltag der Menschen spielt.

»Norteño, usually called Conjunto or Tex-Mex music on the American side of the border, has evolved since the early 1900s into the last Mexican regional style and perhaps the most influential and uniquely Mexican-American tradition. Today, as one of the main roots of Tejano Music, Norteño/Conjunto is immediately recognizable by the accordion as the lead instrument accompanying traditional Mexican duet singing. The diatonic, button accordion, first developed and mass-produced in Germany in the middle of the 19th century, made its appearance in the Texas-Mexican border region before the turn of the century. The instrument was well distributed in the northeast of Mexico and in south Texas, due to the large influx of central Europeans in that region. The rugged little black box quickly became popular, especially with rural musicians and dancers. In addition, the usual conjunto norteño also includes a bajo sexto (solidly built 12-string guitar), a contra-bajo or string bass (today usually an electric one), drums, and sometimes an alto saxophone. As it has been for almost a century, Música Norteña is still widely popular, especially among agricultural and blue collar workers. The music represents a cultural treasure trove with its great variety of rural dances such as the polka, waltz, redova, mazurka, huapango, schotish, cumbia, danzón etc. It also offers a huge repertoire of songs and types, ranging from rancheras to boleros, to a surprising number of often powerful protest ballads (story songs) known as Corridos or Tragedias (…) Today’s Tejano Music embraces plenty of grupos, solo singers, trios, mariachis, bandas, string ensembles, as well as a great variety of orchestras, some or all of which incorporate elements of Norteño, the mother tradition (…).« (Chris Strachwitz, 1995)

Les Blank, Kalifornien, dreht seit den 60er Jahren Dokumentarfilme v.a. über Musik, Musiker und Essen: Cajun, Zydeco, Blues, Dizzy Gillespie, Lightnin’ Hopkins und Knoblauch; Filmauswahl: HOT PEPPER (1973); DEL MERO CORAZON (1979); GARLIC IS AS GOOD AS TEN MOTHERS (1980); BURDEN OF DREAMS (1982); J’ AI ETE AU BAL (1989)