It is likely you haven’t heard the term “Indie Mambo” to describe music simply because such a style did not exist until Sergio Mendoza—a Nogales, Arizona native–coined the phrase in late 2009, in Tucson, Arizona. Mendoza has made his name synonymous with the Sonoran Desert sounds wafting in from the Old Pueblo of Tucson, Arizona. There he participated in the annual benefit event held at the world famous Club Congress, called ‘The Great Cover-Up,’ and chose the legendary Cuban bandleader Perez Prado as his coveree—as the rules of the event dictated. By combining that influence, as well as Cumbia, psychedelia-tinged rock music and other Latin styles, Mendoza created a unique and winning formula.
A major showcase for Sergio’s undeniable talent—aside from the great musical acts he is associated with—is Orkesta Mendoza (formerly known as Sergio Mendoza y la Orkesta). When the multi-instrumentalist Mendoza met the charismatic Salvador Duran an amazing musical atmosphere was created. One where Mexican mambo and cumbia meet the psychedelia of surf rock. Their debut studio album “Mambo Mexicano!” is out via Cosmica Records and is the product of a wild ride of musicality and fun.
Duncan Hudson, Music Director from KXCI (Tucson, AZ) comments, “Orkesta Mendoza does for mambo what the Daptones did for soul, respect and build upon the spirit of a tradition while incorporating a contemporary sound and audience…Sergio Mendoza, a long time collaborator and sideman with Calexico, Devotchka and a host local and international artists (is) considered the pride of Tucson….”
Whether criss-crossing the globe with Calexico, traveling down to Mexico City to perform with Camilo Lara and his Mexican Institute of Sound, performing at the world famous Santa Monica Pier or doing extensive tours in Europe, Orkesta Mendoza has acquired quite a bit of frequent flier miles.
Aside from touring with Orkesta Mendoza, Sergio Mendoza has been seen + heard traveling the globe this year with Calexico, performing and composing with the likes of Calexico, Giant Sand, Devotchka, and most recently the Mexican styled tribute to the Moz “Mexrrissey”- which performed in Mexico, UK, and the United States to rave reviews
“Orkesta Mendoza continue to surprise me both in the studio and onstage live. “Mambo Mexicano” is the tip of the iceberg of great things to come.” • Joey Burns Founder of Calexico/Co-Producer
“Sergio Mendoza is probably my favorite musician of this time. He has the cumbia and mambo in his DNA, but he has the power to make it sound like today. His Orkestra is as punk as the Sex Pistols and as violent as Perez Prado.”
– Camilo Lara of Mexican Institute of Sound
“If I had a son… I would want that son to be a musical genius, not unlike a certain dark haired, handsome lad from Tucson I know. The one that plays guitar like a prince, the piano like a king, accordion, percussion and all other instruments like some sort of sub-diety, and the vihuela… like a God. His name would be… SERGIO MENDOZA!” – Tom Hagerman of Devotchka
“The long awaited debut studio album from Orkesta Mendoza, ”Mambo Mexicano!” fulfills it’s anticipation, providing impeccably produced new mambo and cinematic latin sounds with indie flourishes.” – Duncan Hudson, Music Director KXCI (Tucson, AZ)