With nearly 60 years in the business and still performing regularly, Alice, Texas native Chano Cadena is one of the pioneers of conjunto music, and this selection highlights the classic accordion-driven sound that started it all.
Ruben Naranjo y Los Gamblers, Prenda Del Alma
A bona fide conjunto superstar, Ruben Naranjo from Alice, Texas, was renowned for his simple, yet still elegant sound, and that's perfectly illustrated on Prenda Del Alma.
David Lee Garza y Los Musicales, Tu Boca Roja
Yet another megahit from the golden 1990s, Tu Boca Roja is further example of the progressive tejano style, including accordion, keyboards, and saxophone, courtesy of tejano superstars David Lee Garza y Los Musicales from Poteet, Texas.
La Movida, La Movida Theme
In the late 1970s, Ricky Smith y La Movida, from Corpus Christi, in south Texas, were the first to introduce a hard rock guitar sound (and you can certainly hear an intricate though still melodic solo on this track) to tejano music. They managed to incorporate the change while maintaining the trademark danceable beat.
Country Roland Band, Tu Solo Tu
From Mission, Texas, "Country" Roland Garcia pioneered a blend of country music with Spanish lyrics (and has told interviewers that: "I like country music because it's simple tear-jerking music and it comes from the heart."). The easy-going two-stepping classic Tu Solo Tu was one of his biggest hits.
Randy Garcia y Conjunto Estrella, Me Dicen El Parrandero
From Refugio, Texas, Randy Garcia is one of the many young guns in conjunto music, and lends youthful energy to this cover of the classic Me Dicen El Parrandero.
Elida Reyna y Avante, Prefiero Morir
Mercedes, Texas, native Elida Reyna is the current queen of tejano, and her award-winning hit Prefiero Morir infuses pop qualities while still remaining tejano.
Frutty Villarreal y Los Mavericks, Vamonos Para Acapulco
A classic conjunto cumbia from San Antonio's Frutty Villarreal y Los Mavericks featuring the smooth voice of veteran Flaco Naranjo.
Ruben Ramos and the Mexican Revolution, Voy Navegando
Austin's legendary "El Gato Negro", Ruben Ramos, has been known for the big brass Orquesta sound for decades and Voy Navegando is a great example of his audio signature.
Little Joe y La Familia, Las Nubes
The music of the "King of the Brown Sound", Little Joe Hernandez from Temple, Texas, has resonated with Mexican-Americans nationwide for decades. Las Nubes is arguably the tejano national anthem.
Piper LeMoine is a music journalist with Rancho Alegre Radio in Austin, Texas, which specialises in promoting and preserving conjunto and tejano music
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