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Latin Music USA; Chicano Wave, The


Epsiode Three: The Chicano Wave, Green Label Master(Not Closed-captioned)

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Latin Music USA
Chicano Wave, The
Program Number


Series Description

Latin Music USA is a film about American music. Fusions of Latin sounds with jazz, rock, country, rhythm and blues - music with deeper roots and broader reach than most people realize. It's a fresh take on our musical history, reaching across five decades and across musical genres to portray the rich mix of sounds created by Latinos and embraced by all.

From Latin jazz and mambo to salsa, Tejano, Chicano rock, Latin pop and reggaeton, LATIN MUSIC USA tells the story of the rise of new American music forged from powerful Latin roots and reveals the often overlooked influence of Latin music on jazz, hip hop, rhythm and blues and rock 'n' roll — and on all of American culture. It’s a fresh take on America's musical history, reaching across time and across musical genres to embrace the exciting hybrid sounds created by Latinos, musical fusions that have deeply enriched popular music in the U.S. over more than five decades. Jimmy Smits narrates. Series release date: 10/12/2009

Program Description

A new generation of Mexican Americans raised on rock, rhythm and blues, and country and western music express their cultural identity through Chicano rock, Latin rock, Tejano, and the Norteño (northern) sound.

Chicano Rock In 1958, a 17-year-old Mexican American from Pacoima, California, named Ritchie Valens became a rock and roll sensation almost overnight. With the hit songs “La Bamba” and “Donna,” he paved the way for Chicano rock bands including Tierra and Los Lobos, whose music became a part of Chicano identity. In the late 1960s, Mexican-born guitarist Carlos Santana captured the world’s attention with his unique blend of rock, blues, and Afro-Cuban jazz.

Featured artists Cannibal & the Headhunters El Chicano Little Joe and the Latinaires Los Lobos The Premieres Question Mark and the Mysterians Sam the Sham and The Pharaohs Carlos Santana Tierra Ritchie Valens

Norteño Created in northern Mexico, and based on rural folk music and European polka rhythms, Norteño is popular with recent Mexican immigrants who identify with the heartfelt ballads about the migrant experience. Part of Norteño’s distinctive sound comes from the accordion and the bajo sexto, a type of 12-string guitar.

Featured artist Los Tigres del Norte

Tejano Tejano refers to a Texan of Latino descent. Tejano is also a style of music from central and southern Texas based on the accordion and horns of Norteño. Today, electric guitars, keyboards, and drums give the style a more modern sound. Featured artists Max Baca Freddy Fender Flaco Jiménez Santiago Jiménez Little Joe y La Familia Los Lobos Selena



Asset Type

Broadcast program

Media Type


Chicago: “Latin Music USA; Chicano Wave, The,” 07/16/2009, WGBH Media Library & Archives, accessed December 17, 2018, http://openvault.wgbh.org/catalog/V_AB5FD3654F9B4298932977B63783C5DB.
MLA: “Latin Music USA; Chicano Wave, The.” 07/16/2009. WGBH Media Library & Archives. Web. December 17, 2018. <http://openvault.wgbh.org/catalog/V_AB5FD3654F9B4298932977B63783C5DB>.
APA: Latin Music USA; Chicano Wave, The. Boston, MA: WGBH Media Library & Archives. Retrieved from http://openvault.wgbh.org/catalog/V_AB5FD3654F9B4298932977B63783C5DB
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