Many in the music business already know what Los Fabulosos Cadillacs have to offer. The band first made an impact in the U.S. in 1995 with "Matador," a danceable hit that won the band an MTV Video Music Award. The band's 1996 album, Rey Azucar, was produced by former Talking Heads members Chris Frantz and Tina Weymouth, and featured guest artists Debbie Harry and Mick Jones of the Clash. So, for strangers to Rock en Español, Los Fabulosos Cadillacs, which developed its unique sound by touring constantly, is a good place to start.
The band recently collaborated with Fishbone for the Silencio=Muerte: Red Hot + Latin album. The result, an up-tempo, rockin' version of "What's New Pussycat?" reveals that Latino music and American songs are not always that different. Fishbone frontman Angelo Moore said, "It was the perfect situation -- our bands were kicking a groove." Though the members of Fishbone don't speak Spanish and the Cadillacs don't speak English, their music bridged the gap. "I grew up with the Latino community all around me in Los Angeles," Moore said. "They're the roots of L.A., and we owe it to them to be a part of it."
Through an interpreter, Los Fabulosos Cadillacs bassist and songwriter Señor Flavio told POLLSTAR, "For us, Fishbone is the greatest thing there is. We have very good [chemistry] between us musically and humanely." The two bands got along so well, plans for an upcoming tour together are in the works.
Flavio said he thinks touring with Fishbone will be a real positive experience. "For me, the most important thing in the world is mixing [genres and cultures]. And with music, you can do that. By mixing, you can end up without a lot of racism and segregation and music is one good way to start."
Bringing various styles together can also apply to the sound radiating from the band's newest release, Fabulosos Calavera (Fabulous Skull), on BMG. The songs on the record blend rock, ska, punk, tropical, funk and reggae to create a sound that is unique to the band and crosses musical as well as cultural boundaries.
The audiences at Los Fabulosos Cadillacs concerts are also a good blend. Flavio said there are about 85 percent Latinos and 15 percent Anglos, but the band has noticed that the Anglo audience is growing. The racial make-up of the crowds might be mixed but the enthusiasm is definitely based in punk rock ethics. Slam dancing and body surfing are natural occurrences when Los Fabulosos Cadillacs take the stage. Flavio said the band really enjoys that kind of audience response. "We like that because people are reacting to what's coming from the stage," he said. "The music hits the body and they react to it in a positive way. It's like a celebration."
The band recently performed two shows at the House of Blues in West Hollywood to mark the release of the new album. The size of the show was ideal for Flavio but it's not uncommon for the band to perform to 50,000+ at home in Argentina. "Many times, we do the shows that are created by the promoter and it slips out of our hands," Flavio said. "But the show at the House of Blues, that was ideal. We like to do 2,000 to 6,000 people."
So, would the band be interested in participating in a big package tour with American rock bands? "Yeah, definitely, that would be ideal," Flavio said. "Mixing has always been something very positive to me. Mix audiences. Mix bands. It will be very good for everybody."