Jessy Bulbo: Mexico's Riot Grrrl Does Ranchero

Jessy Bulbo i i

Jessy Bulbo Courtesy of the artist hide caption

itoggle caption Courtesy of the artist
Jessy Bulbo

Jessy Bulbo

Courtesy of the artist

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When Mexico City indie rocker Jessy Bulbo announced she would sound like ranchero style singer Chava Flores on her new single, there were doubts. But if you remember that she has covered reggaeton star Tego Calderon and French yé-yé singer France Gall in the past, it doesn't seem that surprising.

First, some historical context: Flores is considered part of Mexican musical heritage, with a stature comparable to that of Woody Guthrie in American music. Flores was more than just a singer — he was an urban storyteller who reported on life in mid-20th century Mexico. Listen to him sing "Mi Linda Vecindad."

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While Bulbo isn't channeling the Mexican storyteller directly, she does sound like Flores on her hypnotic new single "La Cruda Moral" ("Moral Hangover"), a story about hangovers, guilt and moral legacy.

Before dismissing the song as a caricature, know that Bulbo is Mexico's official riot grrrl; she strips punk to its essence, screams her brains out. Beyond the attitude and the punk clothes is a truly admirable artist, one who has yet to make a bad record. "La Cruda Moral," from her third album, Telememe is already a hit among Mexican rockers, and should do well internationally. Bulbo is a brave not just for stepping out of her circuit, but also for embedding her eccentric personality into her creations.

The song invites you to be true to yourself, and it comforts you if you realize you're not following your family's footsteps. It will always be refreshing to see an artist who can keep things fun. In this song, you can actually hear her laugh. Recorded under the supervision of prolific rock producer Martin Thulin, Telememe is bound to become one of the year's most interesting rock albums. Bulbo will be performing "La Cruda Moral" to a mass of rockers at this year's Vive Latino, making Chava Flores and a bunch of other people proud.

In addition to writing for Alt.Latino, Carlos Reyes blogs for the Latin music website Club Fonograma. He's also a senior at Arizona State University majoring in film and media with a minor in journalism.

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English / Spanish

Jessy Bulbo: La Chica Mala Del Rock Mexicano Canta Ranchera

Cuando Jessy Bulbo, rockera indie de Ciudad México, anunció que en su próximo trabajo sonaría como Chava Flores, todos tuvimos nuestras dudas. Pero luego nos acordamos de que en el pasado, Bulbo ha hecho covers del reggaetonero Tego Calderon y de la cantante Francesa de yé-yé France Gall.

Chava Flores es un legendario cantante del estilo ranchero, parte de la herencia musical mexicana. Podríamos compararlo con Woody Guthrie. Era más que un cantante- era un narrador de la vida mexicana a mediados del siglo 20.

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Bulbo no imita a Flores, pero si suena parecido a el en su nuevo e hipnótico sencillo, "La Cruda Moral", una historia sobre las resacas, la culpa, y por supuesto, la moral.

Para los que no conocen a la cantante, la canción puede llegar a sonar como una caricatura. Cabe aclarar que Bulbo es la "riot grrrl" oficial de México. Con sus gritos ensordecedores y su tendencia a desnudarse de vez en cuando (aparece con los pechos descubiertos en la tapa de su nuevo álbum), su música es la esencia del punk. Pero debajo de toda esa ropa punk y actitud rockera, hay una artista verdaderamente admirable, que hasta el día de hoy no ha producido ni un solo álbum mediocre. "La Cruda Moral," de su tercer álbum, Telememe ya es un éxito entre los rockeros mexicanos, y debería irle bien en otros países. Bulbo tiene coraje: no solo por salirse de su género, sino también por insertar su personalidad excéntrica en todas sus creaciones.

La canción nos invita a ser honestos con nosotros mismos, y le da consuelo al que no obedece ciegamente los deseos de la familia. Siempre es refrescante ver a una artista que sabe como divertirse con su música: en esta canción en particular, podemos escuchar a Bulbo reírse. Grabada bajo la supervisión del prolífico productor de rock Martin Thulin, Telememe sin duda se convertirá en uno de lo álbumes de rock mas interesantes del año. Y seguramente alegrará a muchos cuando la cante en Vive Latino 2011.

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