Friday, September 18, 2020

Director's Cut! Selena Quintanilla/Chrissy Hynde (Pretenders) Piece for WOWEE ZOWEE @ HiLobrow.com | Back on the Chain Gang Becomes Amor Prohibido via Xicanosmosis

originally posted: 3/2/18 6:46 PM; repost 9/18/20 6:40am

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WOWEE ZOWEE
Selena, Amor Prohibido
William Nericcio

The silvery electronic synthesizers that open Selena's Amor Prohibido (1994) usher listeners into a lush (sweet, but not treacly) aural landscape every bit as unpredictable and split (between English and Spanish) as the South Texas coastal shores that gave birth to this singing goddess of conjunto and, after Cesar Chavez (or, maybe ahead of him) the most famous Mexican American superstar the United States has ever known.



Amor Prohibido (Forbidden Love) segues into No me queda mas (I have nothing left or nothing is left to me), a dreamy/sad meditation on loving and losing. The rest of the album is the stuff of memory, released just a few months before her callous assassination by Yolanda Saldívar, Selena's fan club president and agent for her fashion line in Mexico.

Selena's album's pièce de résistance, for me, however, is her cover / revision / rendition of the Pretenders' Back on the Chain Gang, here subjected to Tex-Mex metamorphosis by Selena and her band as Fotos y Recuerdos--the edge of Chrissy Hynde's cut is softened somewhat by the potentially cheezy synthesizer beat applied by Selena, but what emerges is actually a kind of conversation between the White American Rock and South Texas Tejano music, between the edgy pre-cursor to alternative rock and South Texas Chicano rhythms--you had no choice but to dance to the evocative catchy cadences of this next world beat, this mestizo magic.

 

Selena's title transformation also foregrounds what the Pretenders's version perhaps kept more obscure, the song a paean to nostalgia and memory (facilitated by a photograph, that most weirdly fetishistic and ubiquitous of objects).

When Selena's version was released I had recently moved to the West Coast from the chilly, barren enigma (to me) of Eastern Connecticut--I remember hearing Selena's Fotos y Recuerdos on the radio, as I bopped between Chula Vista and San Diego, San Ysidro and LA in my old 1980s-era VW Rabbit diesel. Here was a song that embodied what I came to call Xicanosmosis, (Chicana/o + Osmosis) where the jangling guitars and dangerous new wave crooning of Hynde and her band was force-fused with a decidedly "Mexican" consciousness--"Mexican" not Mexican, as it came from WITHIN the United States, from a South Texas borderlands with a mind (and wit, and language) of its own.

Selena's untimely death led to her short-term apotheosis onto the top of the music charts, but it also erased the possibility that her South Texas born/borne sound would dominate the ear-space (and the Zeitgeist) of the United States.
When JLo was chosen to play her in the requisite biopic (as if there was no difference between a Tejana and a New York Boriqua--you can imagine them in central casting "They both have big nalgas and speak Spanish"), something died, or better put, Selena died a second death--the unique charm and spark of a South Texas superstar silenced and elided a second time on the silver screen.

An edited, more pithy version of the piece above appears here, improved by the magic, pruning shears of Joshua Glenn, head agent at Hilobrow.com!

Thursday, August 27, 2020

Limited Time Offer | TALKING BrownTV: Latinas and Latinos on the Screen by Fede Aldama and Memo Nericcio | $27.95 and Free Shipping

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The time that went into making this splendiferous ad clues you into the fact that miracles do happen! That advertising hype knows no boundaries!

Through a limited time offer (as long as inventory lasts) we can offer the new book by Fede Aldama and Memo Nericcio, the Rosie Greer and Ray Milland (opposite) of Latinx/Mexy Cultural Studies: TALKING #BROWNTV! 

Hit this button now, and it will be shipped to you from the rasquache Textmex world headquarters located in San Diego, CA!




About the book:

Talking #BrownTV: 

Latinas & Latinos on the Screen

Like two friends sitting down in front of the television together, in Talking #browntv, Frederick Luis Aldama and William Anthony Nericcio dialogue about the representations of Latina/os in American television and film from the twentieth century to the present day. One part conversation, one part critique, one part visual cultural studies, and one part rant against the culture industry profiting off warped caricatures of Latina/o subjectivities, Aldama and Nericcio analyze the ways in which Latinx performers have been mediated—with varying degrees of complexity—on the American screen. A comprehensive review of the history of Mexicans, Mexican Americans, Hispanics, Chicana/os, Latina/os, and Latinx performers in television and film, Talking #browntv boldly interrogates one of the largest paradoxes in the history of American television: Why are there so few Latina/os on television, and why, when they do appear, are they so often narcos, maids, strumpets, tarts, flakes, and losers?

From the subversive critiques embedded in well-loved children’s characters like Speedy Gonzalez to the perpetuation of racial stereotypes in modern-era pornography, from Eva Longoria as ethnic mannequin to J-Lo flipping the sexy Latina music video on its head in “I Luh Ya Papi,” and with more than 150 full-color images, Aldama and Nericcio seek to expose the underlying causes as to why Latina/os constitute only 2 percent of mainstream cultural production when they’re the majority minority in the US. In a moment when anti-Mexican and anti-immigrant rhetoric oozes from TV sets and media platforms, Talking #browntv emerges as a bold antidote, an eloquent rejoinder, and a thoughtful meditation on Latina/os on the American screen and in America today.

The critics have spoken!


“From yesteryear’s phosphorescent cathode rays to today’s digital-device blue-light glows, Talking #browntv puts a critical lens on the entire history of televisual reconstructions of Latinxs. Aldama and Nericcio at once call out all those willfully ignorant—racist!—mainstreamings of Latinxs. And they celebrate constructions of a brown TV that affirm the multicolored mosaic that make up Latinx identities and experiences in the US. Talking #browntv wakes the world to the urgency for televisual media to willfully recreate the complexity and diversity of our Latinx communities.”  

Aitana Vargas, award-winning journalist 
for the LA Times, BBC, and CNN Expansión


My Dinner with Andre, except with two sassy Solons waxing wise and wacky on Slowpoke Rodriguez, Superman as Mexico’s savior, and other highs and lows of Mexican muses in American pop culture. Nomás falta the Tapatio on this intellectual popcorn.” 

—Gustavo Arellano, author of Taco USA: 
How Mexican Food Conquered America

Sunday, August 09, 2020

Sunday Funnies in the Age of the Coronavirus: La Cucaracha

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I have a new class this Fall 2020 at SDSU called Comics and History: The Virus Eye/I. As part of that class I am uploading select dispatches on contemporary comic strips--today I did one on Lalo Alcaraz and Junco Cancho's La Cucaracha.   Check it out below:




Virgil Ross Animation Style Sheet: Warner Brothers's Speedy Gonzales!





The auction price for this priceless Speedy Gonzalez artifact got too rich for my blood--I think as of now, Sunday morning August 9, 2020, the price is around $150.00.

Still, a piece of American history--in particular, an American history focused on the production of ethnic American archetypes and stereotypes. And, a piece of the backstory of how 20th century animated masterpieces were forged.

More on the image from Heritage Auctions below and a reminder that I (literally) wrote the book on Speedy Gonzales--the key central chapter of Tex[t]-Mex: Seductive Hallucination of the "Mexican" in America is focused on "the fastest mouse in all Mexico." Check it out here: https://amzn.to/2DrIouU

From Heritage Auctions page, https://comics.ha.com/itm/animation-art/production-drawing/virgil-ross-speedy-gonzales-model-sheet-drawing-original-art-warner-brothers-c-1990s-/a/122032-13740.s

Virgil Ross - Speedy Gonzales "Model Sheet" Drawing Original Art (Warner Brothers, c. 1990s).
He's "the fastest mouse in all Mexico" -- Speedy Gonzales!
 

"He was developed by Friz Freleng and animator Hawley Pratt; his official debut short, Speedy Gonzales (1955), was an Academy Award winner. One of the animators on that historic short was Virgil Ross, who drew this wonderful 16 field model sheet-style illustration with seven full-figure images of Speedy. Virgil Ross (1907-1996) was a long-time Warner Brothers animator who worked in the Bob Clampett, Tex Avery, and Friz Freleng Units. He was famous for his action and dance sequences, as well as his facial expressions. Mr. Ross began releasing hand-painted Limited Edition cels of progressions of his famous Looney Tunes scenes as part of the "Masters Collection" for the Warner Brothers Studio Stores and animation galleries. He began making personal appearances where he created one-of-a-kind drawings of the Looney Tunes characters as well as other cartoons he worked on for other studios. He received the prestigious Winsor McCay Award in 1988. Image sizes on this signed illustration range from 4.5" to 5.5". Fine condition."

Friday, July 31, 2020

#textmex + #eyegiene Repost: The Voracious Eyes of Carmen Mondregón / Nahui Olin

Some of you know I have been writing a follow-up book to Tex[t]-Mex: Seductive Hallucinations of the "Mexican" in America--it's called Eyegiene: Permutations of Subjectivity in the Televisual Age of Sex and Race and is under contract with my friends over the University of Texas Press. Someday, I might even finish the beast.

In the interim, I have been publishing advanced snippets of the book as a regular contributor to Josh Glenn's Hilobrow.com cultural studies site. What appears below originally appeared, slightly truncated, on that site--you can see it here: Below appears the Director's cut edition, warts and all.

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The Voracious Eyes of 
Carmen Mondregón / Nahui Olin
William Nericcio

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On 8, July 1893, Nahui Olin, barrels onto the planet as María del Carmen Mondragón Valseca —eyes, in Europe and Latin America and across the planet, will never be the same again.  

An artist, artists’ model, painter, poet, and all-around Mexican bohemian, Olin is born into a Mexican industrialist family of privilege (la familia Mondrágon manufactured rifles and ammo). The money does some good, as Olin is educated in Mexico and France with an intellectual and arts regime focused on the arts. 

Soon her circle includes a Euro arts league of usual suspects including Jean Cocteau, Pablo Picasso, and Henri Matisse; the same goes down on her return to Mexico, with Olin falling in with the crème de la crème of the Mexican burgeoning arts scene. 

Soon she’s modeling for Diego Rivera and Tina Modotti, hanging with José Vasconcelos, father of “La Raza Cosmica,” and composing poetry with Gerardo Murillo, the one and only Dr. Atl, a writer and painter whose Mexican circle (he’s sort of DF-style Gertrude Stein) fired the palettes of 20th century Mexican muralists.   

Olin is Madonna, pre-Madonna, a pre-cursor herself to celebrity/artist fusions like Lady Gaga—no meat frock for Nahui Olin, but she did wear the first miniskirt in Mexico! 

Olin is yet another American original, a bon vivant artist-lover whose work, predictably, as a model, as an object of art, at times overshadows her efforts as a poet, painter, and photographer--paging Meret Oppenheim. In her wake, Mexico reacts as most of the world does to strong sexy shamanic female forces shameless in speech and actions, with the Mexican popular press scandalously framing her as a witch/madwoman—these are trite, predictable responses to an aesthetic hurricane prone to nudity and random sexual co-conspirators but they did their damage as her legacy is largely anonymous! 

Olin’s work as a poet is worth a second look, her two major works being Óptica cerebral, poemas dinámicos (Brainy OpticsDynamic Poems) and Calinement je suis dedans (Tender, I am inside). Her paintings, raw, bursting with color, are worth a second peek as well, Olin revealed as the seeming mother of Big-Eye paintings (someone tell Tim Burton or Margaret and Walter Keane).

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As your own eyes wander from her work as a painter (Autorretrato en los jardines de versalles, Self-portrait in the Versailles Gardens) to that of a model (here in a haunting capture by Edward Weston), one is struck by the dance of optics at work in Olin’s work. As if infected by retinally-conveyed viruses borne of the cameras and canvases that captured her unique power, Olin’s own aesthetic destiny moves to the rhythm of this optic beat: eyes themselves grow larger than life in her haunting, uncanny paintings.





Friday, June 26, 2020

Saturday, June 20, 2020

Remembering Ruben Salazar: Chicano Victim of Police Violence

Monday, June 15, 2020

Groovy HOSPITABLE IMAGINATIONS Podcast on TALKING #BrownTV



Wow!  just breaking HOSPITABLE IMAGINATIONS podcast—with @eyegiene & @ProfessorLatinx by @chrsgnzlz on TALKING #BrownTV. Direct podcast linkazo: buzzsprout.com/1078679/4184561


... then snag yourself a copy via AMZ: amzn.to/3ecVCJp ... or Kindle: amzn.to/2JUhzz1

Thursday, June 11, 2020

Wednesday, May 27, 2020

Venta Venta! Venga Venga! Talking #BrownTV on Sale Again!

Friday, May 15, 2020

The Perfect Latinx Cultural Studies Book for your Fall 2020 Classes!




TALKING #BrownTV by Frederick Luis Aldama and yours truly!

Now on sale via Bezos's metastasizing site, https://amzn.to/3ecVCJp ...

... and now, via Bookshop ...
https://bookshop.org/books/talking-browntv-latinas-and-latinos-on-the-screen/9780814255599) ...

or via the horse's mouth, our amazing publisher, The Ohio State University Press ...
https://ohiostatepress.org/books/titles/9780814255599.html

or, Bezos, again, ack, Kindle:
https://amzn.to/2JUhzz1

#mextasy #textmex #browntv

Monday, May 04, 2020

Let Dinner Burn! Then Demand Your Talking #BrownTV


Saturday, April 25, 2020

New Edward James Olmos Interview in the New York Times! April 2020 #mextasy

Saturday, April 18, 2020

Lynda Carter, aka Chicana Wonder Woman, Sighting! #textmex #mextasy #lyndacarter #wonderwoman

Friday, April 17, 2020

Now That You Are Trapped Inside Treat Your Fellow Inmates To Mextasy Swag!

More designs here: https://mextasy.threadless.com


Thursday, April 16, 2020

Professor Roy Whitaker with Professor William Nericcio: A Zoom Lecture on Mexican American Writer Daniel Olivas, Author of San Diego State University Press's THINGS WE DO NOT TALK ABOUT


Roy Whitaker, Bill Nericcio: Things We Do Not Talk About (TWDNTA) When Thinking About Daniel Olivas's TWDNT from Mextasy on Vimeo.

"Things We Do Not Talk About When Thinking About Daniel Olivas's THINGS WE DO NOT TALK ABOUT: Latinx Spirituality in the Age of Hate." A public lecture on April 14, 2020 at SDSU with Professors Roy Whitaker and Bill Nericcio. You can consult high resolution versions of the Zoom graphic slides here: bit.ly/nericcio-on-olivas

Thursday, April 09, 2020

Saturday, April 04, 2020

Reading Lists for the Pandemic!

Friday, April 03, 2020

Thursday, March 26, 2020

Tuesday, March 17, 2020

Of Mexicans, Mota (Marijuana), Witchcraft, the Dark Arts and More! Cavalcade Magazine, 1951 #nomextasy #textmex




Self-imprisoned with my family, doing my small part to slow the spread of our global pandemic friend, the Coronavirus, I chanced upon yet another example of another virus, familiar to readers of the Tex[t]-Mex Galleryblog! Stereotypicus Mexicanus-19!

In this case, the year is 1951, the nation/continent? Australia (of all places). The genocide of their autochthonous aborigines not enough to quench their thirsts, Australians and Australian pulp fiction readers turned to Cavalcade Magazine for lurid sustenance:
"[Cavalcade was a] Australian men's magazine that began in the early 1940s during WWII. The book started out with some fairly serious subject matter as much of the features had to to do with the war. The early cartoons and gags were also benign at first. As time went on the magazine became more risque both in cartoons and in the lurid/sensational text stories. Some issues featured the well done comic stories with art by Phil Belbin. By the end of the book's run it was more akin to Playboy."


The confluence of stereotypes here in this "Marihuana Madness" piece is noteworthy--druggy shiftless Mexicans, voodooed out Cubans, etc.   The mind reels! 


As with most pictures on the Tex[t]-Mex Galleryblog, click them to make them mas grande!




Of course in magazines of this species, it's not enough to malign swarthy folks--you also have to throw in some "cheesecake."



Monday, March 02, 2020

Yahoo.com's Latina Stereotype Problem!


click to enlarge the screengrab from yahoo.com



Friday, January 10, 2020

New Heights of Literary Promotion! Talking #BrownTV - style!

Saturday, January 04, 2020

Have you made the leap from analog to digital, from books to Kindle and Apple iBooks!? #browntv has also!

Thursday, January 02, 2020

Flashback to 2011: Satire, Illustration, California, and the Tea Party @boomcalifornia

Wednesday, January 01, 2020

Tex[t]-Mex is Sooooooo 2007! Get your paws on my latest 2020 book: Talking #browntv!!! Co-Authored with Professor Latinx himself, Fede Aldama!


https://amzn.to/2H2XCVH

Now in print and out in the wild! Order now! A new critical romp focused on Latinxers in Television, Film and streaming media from the twin fused-minds of William Nericcio and Frederick Luis Aldama! Hit the image-link above to scoop up a copy via OSU Press (and, sadly, Jeff Bezos via Amazon) or, mucho mas better? Click here to get it directly from me at a discount with free swag (two #mextasy posters! my autograph!) to boot.