Observing Los Angeles

An LA mariachi group that covers Morrissey


For her NPR piece on the Day of the Dead celebration at Hollywood Forever cemetery, Los Angeles correspondent Mandalit del Barco hooked up with El Mariachi Manchester. Their thing is they cover songs by Morrissey. The Smiths as mariachi inspiration? "I grew up in Boyle Heights and when I was in high school, Morrissey and [The] Smiths was a huge part of a teenage, emo life," says Gloria Estrada, the band's guitarrón player. "It's just slit-wrist music and it's perfect."

Singers Moises Baquiero and Alexandro Baquiero say the draw is Morrissey's dark humor, lyrics about doomed relationships and challenging authority and his Irish immigrant roots: "Catholicism, guilt, second class citizen — It's almost the same being an Irish descent in England, what it is of being Mexican or Mexican descent living in the United States."

Listen to the piece at NPR.org

Girlfriend in a Coma by El Mariachi Manchester:

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