Epigraph, via Prof. Leopoldo Santos Ramírez in Matrimonios de anglos y mexicanos en la frontera, which is now overdue at the Boise Public Library:
So he told her the story of his family
The trouble that brought the barbed wire
And of all the things he couldn’t change
And then he told her that he loved her
—”Señorita,” Words by DeVito and Flowers, sung by Don Williams
My first “peer reviewed” article is being published this week in Idaho Landscapes, a journal published by Boise State University’s Division of Research and College of Social Sciences and Public Affairs, along with the Idaho State Historical Society and Idaho State University. I wrote a history of Mexican music in the State of Idaho for this issue, an expansion on a story I did for the Boise Weekly in 2009. I put “peer reviewed” in quotes here, because in some ways newspaper articles are peer reviewed as well. But I was honored to be read by university historians and social scientists and to pass their academic smell test on this piece. And the story was very fun to revisit.
In fact, it starts far from Idaho, in rural Michoacán State in January, where I was visiting a man from Idaho who will be part of Amor and Exile. The band Banda Cuisillos was playing the weekend I was there, at the Santa Gertrudis rodeo grounds. We didn’t go to the concert, but we stood outside the rodeo grounds and watched the scene for a long time and I was struck by the connections to the U.S. in general and to Idaho in particular that I found. I write about those deep connections in the Idaho Landscapes story.
Here’s just one of those connections (note the venue in this video):
The magazine will be released on Thursday, May 5 at Boise State’s Center on the Main, 1020 Main St. (The Alaska Building). Doors open at 6 pm, program at 7 pm including Mariachi Tleyotltzin. I’ll sign your copy …
And here’s some really rad music I came across while reporting the story. This is music made in Idaho, mind you: