Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Season's Greetings from Paloma Negra/Felices Fiestas de Paloma Negra

Tanto ha sucedido desde mi último posting, principalmente la grabación de nuestro disco- yeah! Gracias a toda la gente que nos escribe para pedir la música. Gracias a Enrique Acosta por viajar desde el Sur de Califonria para trabajar tan duro por nosotros. Gracias a todos los integrantes de Paloma Negra- Dominic Garcia, Patricio Morales, Saul Escobedo Rene Paul, Guillermo Villagomez y a nuestro nuevo amigo y músico invitado el Maestro Carlos Caro por acompañarnos en ensayos y nuestro concierto en San Jose. Más noticias pronto.

So much has happened since my last posting, primarily the recording of our cd- yeah! Thanks to everyone who has written requesting our music. My deepest gratitute as well to Enrique Acosta for traveling from southern California to work on our cd. Thank you also to my colleagues, my family- the members of Paloma Negra for their work and dedication- Dominic Garcia, Patricio Morales, Saul Escobedo, Rene Paul, Guillermo Villagomez and our new friend and guest musician, Maestro Carlos Caro for joining us in rehearsals and our concert in San Jose. More to come!

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

I Love You - Paloma Negra

Illustration by Saul Escobedo 2007

Did you know that whenever you whisper, "I'm sorry..." to someone quietly in your mind, Araceli, someone over here sheds a tear and healing begins?

Did you know that whenever you whisper, "Can I help you..." to someone quietly in your mind, someone over here sheds a tear and an army of angels are sent?

And, did you know that whenever you whisper, "I love you..." to someone quietly in your mind, someone over here sheds a tear, healing begins, an army of angels are sent, and 10,000 bells are rung?

Actually, you even have your own marching band that follows you everywhere....

I love you,
The Universe

Sunday, November 04, 2007

My Baby

Araceli Collazo & Abner Collazo
Photograph by Saul Escobedo 2007

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Notes From the Universe

Thoughts Become Things

Long, long ago, before there was even sand in the hourglass, there was a teeny, tiny dot, Araceli -- so small it was virtually invisible -- that was presented to you as a gift.

At first, puzzled and perplexed, you thought it was a joke. Yet, trusting and inquisitive, your intuition led you to accept it and, before long, to carefully examine it.

And lo, after becoming extraordinarily teeny and tiny yourself, you found there was an entrance of sorts into this little treasure, in the form of a long and winding path. So inside you went, through the densest grove of ancient, moss-covered, bending oaks you will ever see. And before long, you found a shiny, gold, old-fashioned key that had been left upon a large, rounded stone, as if especially for you.

With key in hand you proceeded down the path until you arrived at a massive gate. Just above it there was a handwritten plaque for all who might pass beneath it:

"Welcome to the Jungles of Time and Space, Where nothing is as it seem
s, yet all things are possible. Should you ever feel lost or weary, Forget not from where you have come, And follow the signs..."

Peering between the wrought iron bars, you could see the entire Milky Way Galaxy and a hundred billion galaxies beyond it. Your thoughts raced, your imagination ran wild, and as you raised your key to the sturdy, reinforced lock, slowly slipping it in, and gently turning... there was a sudden flash of light and burst of sound. Whereupon, seemingly light-years later but, in fact, no longer than an instant, you found yourself in the most beautiful human form, living on the most beautiful little planet, having a wonderful life, a wrinkle of curiosity on your brow, reading this very Note, right here and now, as Araceli Collazo.

Talk about a sign -
The Universe

Si Nos Dejan - Araceli en San Jose, California

El ajonjoli de todos los moles - yo.... Solo un palomazo. Esa fue la inauguración de la edición de la revista Quinceañeras & Novias Magazine en San Francisco. Saul estuvo ahí con su equipo para documentar el evento y el fundador de la revista, nuestro amigo Rafa, me pidió que cantara :)

Video by Saul Escobedo 2007

Monday, October 29, 2007

On the Train

Last Winter On the Train...

Photograph by Saul Escobedo 2007

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Araceli Collazo and Paloma Negra at Luna's

Graphic Design, Photograph, Logo and Illustration by Saul Escobedo 2007

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Araceli Collazo & Paloma Negra - The Momo Lounge @ Harlow's

For my readers. Please enjoy!

Para mis lectores. Que lo disfruten!

Video by Saul Escobedo 2007

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

A Note From the Universe

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

It's not the size of your dreams, Araceli, that determines whether or not they come true, but the size of the actions you take that imply their inevitable arrival.

And just so you know, the bigger the dream, Araceli, the bigger the action.

Your greatest admirer,
The Universe

Sunday, October 07, 2007

Paloma Negra at the Momo Lounge - Harlow's

Illustration, Logo and Graphic Design by Saul Escobedo 2007

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

No Woman No Cry - Bob Marley

"In this great future, you can't forget your past, so dry your tears, I seh."

Gracias Rene Paul Diaz! You are my brother.

No, woman, no cry;
No, woman, no cry;
No, woman, no cry;
No, woman, no cry.

Said - said - said: I remember when we used to sit
In the government yard in trenchtown,
Oba - obaserving the ypocrites
As they would mingle with the good people we meet.
Good friends we have, oh, good friends weve lost
Along the way.

In this great future, you cant forget your past;
So dry your tears, I seh.

No, woman, no cry;
No, woman, no cry.
ere, little darlin, dont shed no tears:
No, woman, no cry.

Said - said - said: I remember when-a we used to sit
In the government yard in trenchtown.
And then georgie would make the fire lights,
As it was logwood burnin through the nights.
Then we would cook cornmeal porridge,
Of which Ill share with you;
My feet is my only carriage,
So Ive got to push on through.
But while Im gone, I mean:
Everythings gonna be all right!
Everythings gonna be all right!
Everythings gonna be all right!
Everythings gonna be all right!
I said, everythings gonna be all right-a!
Everythings gonna be all right!
Everythings gonna be all right, now!
Everythings gonna be all right!

So, woman, no cry;
No - no, woman - woman, no cry.
Woman, little sister, dont shed no tears;
No, woman, no cry.

I remember when we used to sit
In the government yard in trenchtown.
And then georgie would make the fire lights,
As it was logwood burnin through the nights.
Then we would cook cornmeal porridge,
Of which Ill share with you;
My feet is my only carriage,
So Ive got to push on through.
But while Im gone:

No, woman, no cry;
No, woman, no cry.
Woman, little darlin, say dont shed no tears;
No, woman, no cry.

Eh! (little darlin, don't shed no tears!
No, woman, no cry.
Little sister, don't shed no tears!
No, woman, no cry.)

Friday, September 28, 2007

Me - Yo

Por Saul Escobedo.

Cual de todas soy....

Wednesday, September 26, 2007


An awesome night of our music and Cumbia by la Colectiva.

Our dear Direttore..... Dominic Garcia, composer of our wonderful arrangements! TQM Dom- oiste!!

Our handome percusionista Rene Paul Diaz (in the back dressed in black).


Our beautiful female percussionist- Krishna Munoz!

Our Master Guitarist, Patricio Morales.

La Paloma....

Krishna y Ara....

Sunday, September 23, 2007

My Home

This is my favorite corner.... mi casa.

Sunday, September 16, 2007


Hola a todos.

Sólo quiero compartirles la página web de mi banda Poco a poco iremos agregando más secciones, por ahora los dejo con la Galería en donde encontrarán fotos y videos, muy pronto agregaremos archivos de audio de nuestra presentación en vivo en Nakamoto Productions Studios.

Página Web de Paloma Negra



Hi all.

I just want to share my band's web page. Little by little we'll be adding new sections to it, but for now, I leave you with the Gallery in which you will find videos and pictures, soon enough we will add sound clips from our live performance at Nakamoto Production Studios.

Paloma Negra's Web Page

Big hugs.

Friday, September 07, 2007


La incomprable, la mejor de todas Chavela.

Chavela Vargas is a mexican-costa rican singer born in San Joaquín de Flores (Costa Rica). She mostly sang rancheras, a folkloric musical form widely popular in Mexico. She dressed as a man, smoked cigars, drank heavily, carried a gun and was known for her characteristic red poncho.

In a Colombian television interview in 2000, she openly admitted she was a lesbian. Vargas was born Isabel Vargas Lizano in Costa Rica on April 17, 1919. At only 14, she fled the country because of its lack of opportunities for starting a musical career, seeking refuge in a more sophisticated Mexico. For many years she sang on the streets but in her thirties she became a professional singer.

Her first album was released in 1961 and she has recorded over eighty albums. She was partly retired in the late 1970s but came back in 1991, and debuted at Carnegie Hall in 2003 aged 83, at the behest and promotion of Spanish director Pedro Almodóvar, a long-time admirer and personal friend of Vargas. She is featured in many of his films, in both song and video.

Vargas appeared in the 2002 Julie Taymor film Frida, singing "La Llorona". Her classic "Paloma Negra" was also included in the soundtrack of the film. Vargas herself, as a young woman, was alleged to have had an affair with Frida Kahlo, during Kahlo's marriage to muralist Diego Rivera.

She also appeared in Alejandro González Iñárritu's Babel, singing "Tu Me Acostumbraste", a bolero of Frank Dominguez. Joaquín Sabina's song "Por el Boulevar de los Sueños Rotos" ("Through the Boulevard of Broken Dreams") is dedicated to Vargas.

Chavela Vargas
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Thoughts Become Things - A Message from the Universe

Whatever, Araceli.

I really mean that.

Whatever, whatever, whatever.

You can have it.

The Universe

Thursday, September 06, 2007

Friday, August 24, 2007

My Favorite Passenger

This is a long-overdue posting. This is dedicated to you- "My Favorite Passenger".

Last winter I lost both my cars. This was right after I had started a job in Davis (California) as some of you may or may not remember. I had to commute from Sacramento to Davis for almost 5 hours each day, round trip. I'd leave my house by 5:30 and was back at night around 8 p.m.

I clearly remember the dread and unhappiness the very first day I had to wake up at 4:30 a.m. to be out the door by 5:30- to figure out my routes and schedule, etc. That first day was total chaos. I know, I know, it may be nothing to some, but to me, it was truly a lesson. Especially considering everything else I was going through, but all that is a different story.

I felt lost and distant from such an experience, at least here in the USA anyway. Little did I know that during this period of time I would experience some of the most profound life lessons. I may go into some of those later on. A few months ago I published a posting titled "Home". You just might remember.

When I discovered My Favorite Passenger's route, right along Sutter's Fort, I began the true learning experience I was bound to live and survive. Thanks to My Favorite Passenger and "The Bus Driver from Heaven", their wonderful personality, kind smiles and patience, my learning experience was anything but painful.

While it was still tough to get up so early every morning and ride RT for 5 long hours, experiencing the cold, the rain, the darkness of the early morning in Downtown Sacramento; the fear of being late to catch the bus; arriving late at work, the street noises and just the view of life, as raw as it is, out in the streets of Sacramento- sharing a moment in time with both My Favorite Passenger and the Bus Driver was definitely something I will always remember. The ride from Sutter's Fort to the heart of Downtown went by so quickly. The more "torturous" portion of the trip was from Downtown Sacramento to Davis. Different route, different bus, different people.

My Favorite Passenger was a beautiful thing to look at, just everything about him. The hat, the glasses, his calm and relaxed attitude, the look in his eyes; his polite "good morning"s and "have a good day"s were incredible life lessons. Days and days went by before we even exchanged a word.

One morning, without consulting the Driver, I dared to take pictures of My Favorite Passenger. While some of the other passengers were clearly bothered by my audacity, I tried to ignore it in an effort to capture exactly what I felt when I looked at him. I took these pictures with his consent of course. For that too I will always be thankful.

When I finally was able to purchase a new vehicle, I experienced bitter-sweet emotions the last day I took the bus. I didn't even have a chance to say goodbye to either one. I didn't even mention it. Maybe I just didn't dare to say I wouldn't be taking the bus again, at least for a while.

If you know anything about me, you know that I am not the best photographer in the world, not truly a photographer for that matter. Definitely not like my dear friend and colleague Marlene Hawthorne, yet still I dare to share my eyes with you.

For-ever thankful to you, My Favorite Passenger and the Bus Driver from Heaven.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

La Violeta

Coleccionó 3,000 mil canciones. Vivió intenso, tan intensa Violeta Parra. Tocó tantas vidas. Se quitó la suya un día de Febrero de 1967.

Para mis colegas y amigos de Paloma Negra y para Patrick Grizzell.

She collected 3,000 songs. She lived intensely, as intense as she was, Violeta Parra. She touched so many lives. She took her own one day in February of 1967.

To my colleagues and friends from Paloma Negra and to Patrick Grizzell.

Gracias a la vida....

Gracias a la vida, que me ha dado tanto.
Me dio dos luceros, que cuando los abro.
Perfecto distingo, lo negro del blanco.
Y en el alto cielo, su fondo estrellado.
Y en las multitudes al hombre que yo amo.

Gracias a la vida, que me ha dado tanto.
Me ha dado el sonido y el abecedario.
Con el las palabras que pienso y declaro.
Madre, amigo, hermano y luz alumbrando.
La ruta del alma del que estoy amando.

Gracias a la vida, que me ha dado tanto.
Me ha dado el oído que en todo ancho.
Graba noche y día grillos y canarios.
Martillos, turbinas, ladridos, chubascos.
Y la voz tan tierna de mi bien amado.

Gracias a la vida, que me ha dado tanto.
Me dio el corazón, que agita su mano.
Cuando miro al fruto del cerebro humano.
Cuando veo el bueno tan lejos del malo.
Cuando miro el fondo de tus ojos claros.

Gracias a la vida, que me ha dado tanto.
Me ha dado la marcha de mis pies cansados.
Con ellos anduve ciudades y charcos.
Playas y desiertos, montañas y llanos.
Y la casa tuya, tu calle y tu patio.

Gracias a la vida, que me ha dado tanto.
Me ha dado la risa y me ha dado el llanto.
Asi yo distingo dicha de quebranto.
Los dos materiales que forman mi canto
Y el canto de ustedes que es mi propio canto.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

NCLR Annual Conference in Miami Florida

A little souvenir. Yes Barack Obama himself... Thank you Eric!

Photo Courtesy: E.P. Nealy

While this is not the view from my room at the Radisson, this is a beautiful view taken by Marlene Hawthrone... from her own room.

This was an intense weekend for me and all others attending. The Conference was packed with presentations, luncheons (The Latinas Brunch with Hillary Clinton, etc.), workshops, concerts, exhibits. We attended a great concert with Luis Fonsi on July 22 and the following night a special concert at Bongos Cuban Cafe with Elvis Crespo all to ourselves! It was all very impressive.

I had an opportunity to meet wonderful people from Latino organizations based in different cities and states. I am very fortunate to have been there, to share and learn, but most importantly- to serve.

Here is a great picture taken by my friend and colleague, Marlene Hawthrone. I only wish you could see this man's beautiful face. So sweet and gentle. Thank you, Marlene!

Photo Courtesy: Marle Hawthrone

Here are a couple of other pictures I've received from a colleague in Miami. I will share more as they come.

Unfortunately I left my camara behind in Sacramento and had no chance of taking any pictures myself. My only option was my cell phone. I'll share those as soon as I am able to download them from its memory :)

These pictures are also from the Naturalization Workshop we held on Saturday, July 21, 2007 at the Convention Center. Nearly 500 people participated in the workshop. It was an amazing thing. The second one is a picture of Luis Cerros from Democracia USA.

Thanks to Julio, Luis Cerros, Rudy and my new primo Rafael Collazo from Democracia USA for their hospitality during the Naturalization Training in preparation for the Workshop.

Photos Courtesy Democracia USA

Monday, July 16, 2007

Gloomy Sunday

To Life. To Death!

I've always had a thing for Sundays. A colleague and I were actually discussing this theme during this past Monday. That dreadful feeling you experience during the late afternoon... as night approaches... on Sunday.

This song, Gloomy Sunday, is one that I particularly love. It confronts us to one, if not our biggest fear... or is it our biggest escape? Our biggest dream? Death. Death is no dream... goes the song.

I dedicate this posting and this song to all of you out there who share the dread of Sundays, a pain similar to the one conveyed so clearly in these lyrics.

Call me crazy, but I also wish to inaugurate the "Gloomy Sunday Club" from Sacramento and the rest of the world. Share songs, poems, thoughts, ideas, pictures that may reflect a "gloomy Sunday".

While I absolutely love Billie Holiday's version of this song, in my opinion, Sara McLachlan is the best version ever. Her beautiful vocals extract every bit of poetry, every bit of pain from it. The simple guitar arrangement is perfect for her vocals.

I wanted to find Sara singing it on but I found this clip with her version. Thank you EngelFin for posting this video.

I encourage you to research a little on the subject and if you come across the original lyrics by those mysterious hungarian composers, please pass it along.

To Life. To Death! Gloomy Sunday.


Gloomy Sunday

Sunday is gloomy
my hours are slumberless.
Dearest the shadows I live with are numberless.

Little white flowers will never awaken you.
Not where the black coache of sorrow has taken you.

Angels have no thoughts of ever returning you.
Would they be angry If I thought of joining you?
Gloomy sunday.

Gloomy Sunday,
With shadows I spend it all.
My heart and I have decided to end it all.

Soon they'll be candles and prayers-that are sad, I know.
Let them not weep.
Let them know that I'm glad to go.

Death is no dream for in death I'm caressing you.
With the last breath of my soul I'll be blessing you.
Gloomy Sunday.

I was only dreaming.
I wake and I find you asleep
in the deep of my heart, dear...

Darling I hope that my dream never haunted you.
My heart is telling you how much I wanted you.
Gloomy Sunday.

Go figure! I wanted this post to be pushlied on Sunday and it took me about 30 minutes to write it, between typing the lyrics, finding the video, etc. Hmm... Just pretend it's still Sunday.



Saturday, July 07, 2007

Thoughts Become Things/Los Pensamientos se Materializan

Spanish version of text follows each paragraph in English.

This has been my slogan for the past several months... I believe it's true. I know that our "guidance system" is our emotions and feelings. We really do materialize that on which we focus.

Este ha sido mi slogan por los pasados meses.... Yo creo que es cierto. Sé tambiénque nuestro "sistema de guía" son nuestras emociones y sentimentos. En verdad maerializamos aquello en lo que nos enfocamos.

I want to share this exceprt from an electronic magazine I receive concerning an experiment on DNA.

Deseo compartir un fragmento de un artículo que recibí en una revista electrónica con respecto a un experimento de DNA.

I realize this posting has nothing to do with my music- yet I am sharing it because it has everything to do with me and how I choose to view my ever changing life.

Entiendo que esta publicación poco o nada tiene que ver con mi música, pero lo comparto porque tiene todo que ver conmigo y con la forma en que elijo ver mi tan cambiante vida.

On a separate note, I will be performing with my good friends from The Premiers tomorrow at Carmelita's, off of Sunrise and Fair Oaks from 7 to 10 p.m.. An incredible place to be, excellent food, outstanding service.

En una nota aparte, quiero compartirles que me presentaré mañana Sábado con The Premiers en el restaurant Carmelita's, sobre la Sunrise y Fair Oaks Blvd. de 7 a 10 p.m. Un increíble lugar, con excelente comida e increíble servicio.

Soon enough I will be performing there with my new ensemble (Patricio, Dominic and Rene and many guests musicians). I'll keep you posted. Thoughts become things!

Pronto estaré presentando mi nuevo ensamble (Patricio, Dominic y Rene). Los mantendré al tanto. Los pensamientos se materializan!

Enjoy this article and the weekend!

Disfruten el artículo y el fin de semana! (Ofrezco una disculpa porque no traduje el artículo, pero si alguien lo necesita traducido, por favor me avisan :)


Below is an experiment which proves that DNA can heal itself according to the "feelings" of the individual as reported recently by Gregg Braden. He says living cells communicate through an energy not affected by time and distance, an energy that already exists everywhere, all the time.

The experiment was done by the Institute of Heart Math.

This is the experiment that relates directly to the anthrax situation. In this experiment, some human placenta DNA (the most pristine form of DNA) was placed in a container from which they could measure changes in the DNA. Twenty-eight vials of DNA were given (one each) to 28 trained researchers. Each researcher had been trained how to generate and FEEL feelings, and they each had strong emotions.

What was discovered was that the DNA CHANGED ITS SHAPE according to the feelings of the researchers:

1. When the researchers FELT gratitude, love and appreciation, the DNA responded by RELAXING and the strands unwound. The DNA became longer.

2. When the researchers FELT anger, fear, frustration, or stress, the DNA responded by TIGHTENING UP. It became shorter and SWITCHED OFF many of our DNA codes!

If you've ever felt "shut down" by negative emotions, now you know why your body was equally shut down too. The shut down of the DNA codes was reversed and the codes were switched back on again when feelings of love, joy, gratitude and appreciation were felt by the researchers.

This experiment was later followed up by testing HIV positive patients. They discovered that feelings of love, gratitude and appreciation created 300,000 TIMES the RESISTANCE they had without those feelings. So here's the answer to what can help you stay well, no matter what dreadful virus or bacteria may be floating around, stay in feelings of joy, love, gratitude and appreciation!

These emotional changes went beyond the effects of electromagnetics. Individuals trained in deep love were able to change the shape of their DNA.

Gregg Braden says this illustrates a newly recognized form of energy that connects all of creation. This energy appears to be a TIGHTLY WOVEN WEB that connects all matter. This is the science behind how we can choose a time line to stay safe, no matter what else is happening.

As Gregg explains in The Isaiah Effect, basically time is not just linear (past, present and future), but it also has depth. The depth of time consists of all the possible prayers and time lines that could ever be prayed or exist. Essentially, all our prayers have already been answered. We just activate the one we're living through our FEELINGS. THIS is how we create our reality - by choosing it with our feelings.

Our feelings are activating the time line via the web of creation, which connects all of the energy and matter of the Universe.

Remember that the law of the Universe is that we attract what we focus on. If you are focused on fearing whatever may come, you are sending a strong message to the Universe to send you whatever you fear. Instead, if you can get yourself into feelings of joy, love, appreciation or gratitude, and focus on bringing more of that into your life, you are going to avoid the negative stuff automatically.

You will be choosing a different TIME LINE with your feelings. You can prevent getting anthrax or any other flu, virus, etc, by staying in these positive feelings, which maintains an incredibly strong immune system. So here's your protection for whatever comes: Find something to be happy about every day, and every hour if possible, moment-to-moment, even if only for a few minutes.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

El Amor - Recital June 15 2007: The Summary

O.K. guys! Here it is. When I get off work, I will get back to you. In the interim, enjoy this summary.

O.K. raza! Aquí está. Cuando salga de la oficina, estaré de nuevo con ustedes. Por lo pronto, disfruten de este resumen.

Que viva el Amor!


Monday, May 21, 2007

El Amor - A Bilingual Performance

Hello, everyone! I apologize for my long absence. I've been busy :)

This weekend, however, I took the time to go for a nice, long drive to the Napa Valley and enjoyed an Italian festival, food, incredible wine and the company of our wonderful friend Felipe Davalos and his lovely wife, Ana Lilia Tovar. I promise to share a bit more on that later... it really was incredible. We tried to ride the Wine Train for lunch along the wineries but lunch was fully booked for the entire weekend. Now I know we need reservations :)

I resigned my position with Communicare Health Centers and accepted a full time position with NCLR (National Council of La Raza It's closer to home and a new experience I am willing to embrace and enjoy.

I am currently working on a couple of wonderful projects. I've met incredible musicians like Rene Paul, Dominic Garcia, Johnny Flores and Jerry Robins with whom I've had the pleasure of singing a little. I've let go of my project with a wonderful solo guitarist, Willie Chapin, as we both are working on projects that better fit our wants and needs. But the experience was incredible! I've put together about 30 new songs that I hadn't performed before.

I have a live performance before a crowd of 20 thousand people this Saturday in Vacaville, California. I'll be joining The Premiers- Jorge, Steve, Roberto and the incredible Oscar on base- with vocals!

Lastly, La Raza Galería Posada is featuring me on June 15, 2007 and would love to see everyone there.

I continue to do as best I can with what I have from where I am (

Con cariño y corazón!


Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Stella - The Film - Sacramento International Film Festival 2007

I enjoyed participating in this festival and meeting so many daring and wonderful creators, actors, composers, filmakers. Thank you Marti for your hard work and dedication. Thank you for bending over backwards and making the screening of our film possible after all those technical difficulties at The Crest. I only wish there had been more people to view our film in such a wonderful and huge screen! Hope you're feeling better, Marti. Get some rest! Don't forget about us.

I also wish to thank our dear friend and colleague Jim Michael for taking the time to participate in the film and for his help in developing his role. I really have no way to thank you, Jim. You are wonderful. I Love the Cesar Chavez flag!

Additional thanks to Jim Harris, the plumber in the film, for allowing us to utilize those images. Doesn't he look great?

Thank you Adam Seitu for getting us into this whole experience and for being so supportive and an incredible friend.

This film would be incomplete without the music. You and the Moon is truly a beatiful song. For those of you who don't know the story, Tao and I met in Monterrey, Mexico and always searched for a chance to get together for a project. This is one of the things we did. You and the moon is his original song, lyrics and music. Once he approached me about adapting it and soon after I wrote the lyrics in English, we got together at his wonderful studio one night in Monterrey to record this version. This is actually scratch vocals but it's the only version I have. I still love it and hope we will have another opportunity to work together again for a little magic. Tao is without a doubt one of the best composers and songwriters I have met in my life. We share the same passion and intensity for music. Thank you Tao, from the bottom of my heart for sharing this song with me.

Thanks to my brother Jose Luis for arriving at the right moment and taking Saul for a drive around town. The shot we used of the Capitol is perfect!

Both Saul and I wish to thank our friends and colleagues who took the time to come share the moment with us.

Like my dear friend and colleague Armon Newton put it.... hey, if I can't make the Grammy, I'll take the Oscar home! Why not.... :)

For those of you who have not seen our film, please enjoy.

Sunday, March 11, 2007


This is actually someone's home.

This is one of the bus stops where I waited for a bus every morning for nearly three months. Rain or shine, a lady slept seemingly undisturbed by the constant arrival and departure of buses and people walking by.

The first time I saw this, inside of me, I wondered what that was. Once I heard a female passenger talk about how a lady actually slept bundled up under the umbrella. How could something like that be possible, I thought to myself.

Many times I saw the umbrella, surrounded by a metalic cart and bags of different types, filled with only she knew what. Pages from old newspapers taped to some of the bags with religious-type messages. Never actually saw her. Yet she slept in there and attempted to protect herself from the night, the winter and the noise.

Another morning, a police officer on a bike rode past the umbrella but made a sudden U turn on the side walk, slowly circled around the bus stop shelter, staring at the sight, as if trying to figure out what to do with it. But he said or did nothing and left. A male passenger just looked at him with a hint of bitterness as he rode away and said, "What do they know?".

The very last day I took the bus, I finally got a chance to see her. An old, frail lady attempting to sleep in a sitting position, bundled up, surrounded by all those bags, except... there was no umbrella. Where was her umbrella? What happened to it? A man sat on the bench right next to her as he coughed loudly and constantly over her shoulder. I heard her mumble angrily as she tried to make him quit. He spit at his own feet and laughed, then took a drag from his cigarette. Didn't move an inch.

This stuff happens in our city. People do sleep in the street, in dark, dirty corners where sometimes drunk, homeless or just ordinary people actually urinate and spit. This really is someone’s home, in the middle of the night, during winter rain, among city noises... as morning merciless arises.

Where do these people go when morning comes?

Sunday, February 18, 2007

My favorite Things

This is a series of posts I have decided to title "My favorite Things". I will begin by sharing these two pictures. Many people who have seen these pictures online write to ask why I wore a patch on my right eye. I am no pirate or sailor. It is actually just an optical illusion. It's the shadow reflected on my face from the excess of light coming from the window. The dark, deep hallow around my eye makes it look like a patch connected to another thin shadow mirrored on my face. I suppose that comes from the bars on the window....

Sunday, February 11, 2007

Friday Night - The Mood

My performance with Inner Soul at the Torch Club in Sacramento right on my birthday.