Guest DJ: Gael Garcia Bernal Shares His Favorite Songs With NPR : Alt.Latino The Mexican actor and producer has revitalized Latin American cinema, and his movies have breathtaking soundtracks. He joins Alt.Latino to discuss his favorite artists, the music of his films and his own musical projects.

Guest DJ: Gael García Bernal's Music Diaries

Guest DJ: Gael García Bernal's Music Diaries

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Mexican actor and director Gael García Bernal. MIGUEL MEDINA/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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MIGUEL MEDINA/AFP/Getty Images

Mexican actor and director Gael García Bernal.

MIGUEL MEDINA/AFP/Getty Images

English / Spanish

Several years ago, when I decided to become a journalist, I hung this saying above my office computer: "Unless you are absolutely sure that there is life after death, this is the only chance you get to prove your humanity."

Actor and director Gael García Bernal's work certainly embodies that quote. He exploded onto the Latin American film scene in 2000 with the now classic Amores Perros, and a year later achieved international recognition with Y Tu Mamá También. Since then, the films he's worked on have shown a commitment to artistry, and tend to be thoughtful, profound commentaries on the state of Latin America and Latinos today. His vision is apparent in his acting (in award-winning movies like The Motorcycle Diaries, about the life of Ernesto "Che" Guevara) and in the works he produces (Sin Nombre is a personal favorite, and I'm looking forward to the upcoming Who Is Dayani Crystal? with bated breath).

The other thing that unifies all of Bernal's work is amazing soundtracks — which is why we invited him to join us on this week's Alt.Latino. He works with renowned artists like Gustavo Santaolalla, Molotov, Julieta Venegas and Café Tacvba, while at the same time providing a platform for yet undiscovered artists who deserve a chance. In the words of Alt.Latino host Felix Contreras, Bernal's films call to mind those of Mexican cinema's "Epoca De Oro" (Golden Age), and have redefined Latin American cinema to be synonymous with excellent soundtracks.

Bernal joined us this week to share some of his favorite new bands, discuss how he is involved in the musical selections for his films and answer the million dollar question: How did he prepare to sing his ranchera-themed cover of Cheap Trick's "I Want You to Want Me" for the movie Rudo Y Cursi?

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English / Spanish

Esta Semana En Alt.Latino: Invitado Especial Gael García Bernal

Hace varios años, cuando decidí que lo mio era el periodismo, colgué el siguiente refrán en mi oficina: "A menos que estés absolutamente seguro que existe la vida después de la muerte, ésta es la única oportunidad que tienes para demostrar tu humanidad."

El trabajo de Gael García Bernal parece abrazar este concepto. Se hizo conocer en el cine latinoamericano con Amores Perros, un verdadero clásico desde su estreno en el 2000. Un año después, recibió reconocimiento internacional por su actuación en Y Tu Mamá También. Desde entonces, sus películas han demostrado un gran compromiso artístico y profundos comentarios acerca de la realidad de América Latina y de los latinos en Estados Unidos. Esta visión se ve claramente en su actuación en Diarios De Motocicleta, una biografía sobre la vida de Ernesto "Che" Guevara, pero también en los proyectos que ha decidido producir, tales como Sin Nombre y Los Invisibles

Todas las películas de Bernal tienen bandas sonoras espectaculares. Trabaja con artistas de renombre como Gustavo Santaolalla, Molotov, Julieta Venegas y Café Tacvba, pero a la vez colabora con músicos que no son conocidos, pero merecen ser descubiertos

Gael nos habla está semana desde su casa en Buenos Aires, contándonos sobre sus nuevos artistas favoritos, como elige la música para sus películas y la pregunta del millón: ¿A quién se le ocurrió la canción "Quiero Que Me Quieras" de Rudo Y Cursi?

This Week On Alt.Latino: Guest DJ With Gael Garcia Bernal

  • La Revolución de Emiliano Zapata

    No Alternative Text

    "Nasty Sex"

    From 'Revolucion De Emiliano Zapata'

    Coming at you from: Mexico

    More about this band here.

    YouTube
  • Nacha Pop

    No Alternative Text

    "Lucha De Gigantes"

    From 'Amores Perros'

    Coming at you from: Spain

    YouTube
  • Control Machete

    No Alternative Text

    "Si Señor"

    From 'Amores Perros'

    Coming at you from: Mexico

    YouTube
  • Silvio Rodriguez

    No Alternative Text

    "Con Diez Años de Menos"

    From 'Rabo de Nube'

    Coming at you from: Cuba

    Find out more about Silvio Rodriguez here.

    YouTube
  • Carla Morrison

    No Alternative Text

    "Esta Soledad"

    From 'Aprendiendo A Aprender'

    Coming at you from: Mexico

    Find out more about Carla Morrison on her website.

    YouTube
  • Dick El Demasiado

    No Alternative Text

    "Flaca De Las Coloradas"

    From 'No Nos Dejamos Afeitar'

    Coming at you from: Argentina

    Find out more about this artist here.

    YouTube
  • Los Tigres Del Norte

    No Alternative Text

    "Tres Veses Mojado"

    From 'Idolos Del Pueblo'

    Coming at you from: Mexico

    Find out more about Los Tigres here.

    YouTube
  • Devendra Banhart & Gael García Bernal

    No Alternative Text

    "Cristobal"

    From 'Smokey Rolls Down Thunder Canyon'

    Coming at you from: Texas

    Find out more about this artist here.

    YouTube
  • Gael García Bernal

    No Alternative Text

    "Quiero Que Me Quieras"

    From 'Rudo Y Cursi Soundtrack'

    Coming at you from: Mexico

    YouTube
  • Caifanes

    No Alternative Text

    "Viento"

    From 'Caifanes'

    Coming at you from: Mexico

    More about this band here.

    YouTube
  • Jessy Bulbo

    No Alternative Text

    "Flores y Frutos"

    From 'Telememe'

    Coming at you from: Mexico

    Find out more about this artist here.

  • Gilberto Gil

    No Alternative Text

    "Procissão"

    From 'Louvação'

    Coming at you from: Brazil

    More on this artist here.

    YouTube