Miguel A. Gandert
Catherine L. Kurland
Enrique R. Lamadrid
University of New Mexico Press,
Date of Publication: October 2013
Hotel Mariachi is a book of photographs and essays depicting the mariachi musicians of East Los Angeles and the eighty-year-old mariachi culture centered in the 1889 hotel on Mariachi Plaza in Boyle Heights. In her Introduction, Ordaz-Molina writes that documentary art photographer Gandert “joyously and heartbreakingly captures this dichotomy of a regal band at play and the harsh reality of the struggle for work.”
Ethnomusicologist Lamadrid brings forth mariachi poetics and offers an in-depth study of all aspects of the music and the lives of the musicians. It is also a story of preservation, of valiant efforts to save the cultural heritage of the mariachis and the historic hotel, built by great-grandparents of author Kurland, who traces her Latino family history back to the birth of Los Angeles.