Sunday mornings in Lincoln Heights

I woke up this morning to hear my neighbor blasting Cumbia del Rio from his truck and I told myself “Ah, another beautiful morning in Lincoln Heights!”

Back when I first moved to my street, I lived next door to a three house complex of paisas and their cholillo kids. I knew some of them previously as they used to be my neighbors on the street I had moved from a few blocks over. (In Lincoln Heights this is totally common for rental residents to move around to different blocks and inevitably you end up next to be people you left behind). Anyways, this was back in the mid 90s and like all good paisas, they had a massive sound system in their truck which they would blast every Sunday morning (the sound mingling with my other neighbor’s roosters.) I loved this auditory wake up call but what I couldn’t understand was why the singer they kept listening to had such an awful voice. I would go around mimicking it because it sounded so out of tune and nasal-y. Eventually, the bad singing grew on me and I became to find it kinda charming. Guess who that singer was? The infamous Chalino Sanchez.

Las Nieves de Enero-Chalino Sanchez

Have a great Sunday!

Decent article on Chalino Sanchez by LA Weekly.
First part of article here.
(Thanks, Soledad en Masa!)

17 thoughts on “Sunday mornings in Lincoln Heights

  1. There’s a documentary on Chalino Sanchez btw. I saw it at the 2004 Latino Film Festival at the Egyptian in Hollywood. They used a lot of his family footage like clips of Chalino all pimped out with this White Phyton Boots, White Wrangler dress up w/ the push buttons, gold medallion, his 517 Levi slack bootcuts, sombrero….pulling on the rope for a piñata for his child (Adan Chalino) birthday party at a park. Representing like a true G should 24/7.

    Then his wedding party pics where’s dancing like a straight “G”!”. These personal vids and pics were the best of this kinda cheesy film…but its Chalino! Adan Chalino Sanchez had just gotten killed like two months before, yet his mother was in attendance. They had to do two screenings for this sold out film.

  2. Thanks Metro for all the links. I agree with El Chav the Wasted Days, Wasted Nights clip is awesome. I sent the link to my dad, that’s like one of his fav songs and I’ll know he’ll get a kick out of it to hear it Sinaloa style. Actually Saul Viera’s voice does compliment the tune rather nicely.
    Do you know if the Chalino Documentary is available anywhere? I included the above clip cause I got a chuckle at all the women who kept interrupting his song for a photo or a whisper in his ear. His poor wife, she must’ve turned the other cheek quite a bit!

  3. MV,

    did you ever go to the event that was put together by La X 97.9(equis ) at the LA Sports Arena (maybe in 1993 or so)? I was there, it was when Tigres del Norte closed the show with Pacas de a Kilo. There were more than 100,000 attendees and remember it was really hot that day and many people were passing out.

    btw, your initials could also be for Mal Verde 😉

  4. I’ve heard that he fatally shot a guy and also wounded a woman in Thermal, CA while performing. It has been said that was what caught up with him in 1992.

  5. Urb:
    I believe yes. Is that the same show with Pepe Aguilar? I remember seeing the LAPD on horseback looking at this 6’3+ Charro with silver revolver in his dayum!

    Yes, I think that’s it. I saw it at the Film Festival in 04 and it just seemed trippy to me that they were screening it. It isn’t necessarily art-house type, but it is entertaining in a ghetto fab kinda way. I think they even have some of the 15era video type editing…you know with the face in the ‘copa’ 4 times & rainbow colors.

    I always thought Chalino was dope on how he went about his business…recording and distribution. Real simple. I remember seeing all his “indie” tapes at the swap meet (before he died)…all lined up next to each other… cassettes with simple white cover jackets of Chalino standing there all lanky, no graphics, no nothing, just him. As 12 yr old I thought that was hella hard, and thought who the hell is this??
    The title tracks were just names.

    Like this:

    Then came the post death exploitation like P Diddy did Biggie…with mash ups, greatest hits etc etc etc

  6. Artist and singing style aside, I envy you’re ability to go with the soundwave flow. If someone blasting music disturbed me out of my sleep — I wouldn’t care if it was digitally remastered recordings of my mother singing me lullabies. I’d be out there offering a steaming hot cup of STFU.

  7. That’s why I like living in my neighborhood Will, I’ve learned to either tune out and/or enjoy the sounds. It reminds me that I live in a community with other people and that real life means being inconvenienced sometimes. It makes it so you don’t turn into a self centered, sheltered person, IMHO.
    Also, I’m one of those people that makes lots of noise myself, whether it’s having a party or blasting my Serbian Gypsy brass band music like I’m doing this morning.
    Now that I’m older though, I do try to keep it quiet on work nights. All my neighbors still greet me, so I can’t be that horrible. 😉

  8. theres somethig bout that music, i used to hate it and i always thought it was kind of tacky but after a while u start liking it.

  9. Cheers, Chimatl. I certainly agree that at the increasing densities we live in, inconvenience is a fact of our urban lives. But I guess we differ on who’s the sheltered and self-centered party. You see those inconvenienced potentially bearing that label, while I see that shoe fitting on whoever’s doing the inconveniencing.

    Connection with one’s community is important. But rather than needing reminders I live amongst others, I take that into account every day in demonstrating consideration and respect for them. Do unto others as you would have them… and all that jazz. Or Serbian Gypsy brass.

  10. Here are my laws on noise: have that crap off by midnight. Loud sounds should resume at seven or eight a.m. If noise bothers you at other times, you’re just a whiner.

  11. I remember when my former neighbors would have their music blasting past 3 am without consideration and I would not call the cops, but early in the morning 6ish I would start up the lawnmower sans muffler and would let it run at high rpms — I know that I was polluting the air, but it felt good. I only had to do it 3 times and after that, the music was at a more tolerable level.

  12. God what planet are you from that blasting awful music early in the morning or night is ok? I have lived in Lincoln Heights for over a year and have had to deal with trash throwing children and adults, taggers (who coincidentally only tag other working class people’s homes but not their own–wonder why?), and of course the typical Mexican obliviousness that there are other Latinos that exist that are NOT Mexican and don’t share the love of your “cultura”

  13. I also seen the documentary back in 2004 Latino Film Festival @ The Egyptian.

    Great article by the way. I use to live in the city of Paramount, CA. and this would happen to me all the time. I would always think to myself, “Who would want to listen to that music?”. I though someone had recorded themselves and played the song constantly in their house.

    Can’t go wrong with Querido Amigo by El Gavilancillo

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