El Chicano

El Chicano was born out of East Los Angeles’s burgeoning Latino music scene. El Chicano, originally known as “The VIP’s”, was founded by Freddie Sanchez. It was the most popular L.A. Latino Rock recording artist. MCA Records released 7 albums, including classics like Celebration, Revolucion, Cinco, and Viva Tirado. Maestro Gerald Wilson composed Viva Tirado, a tribute to Jose Ramon Tirado, a Mexican bullfighter. It was their biggest crossover hit. It charted in every music chart category, except country, and was their first Gold Record. In 1970, it was also the most successful group in Jazz. Ersi Arvisu performed the lovely ballad “Sabor A Mi” on the Revolucion album. This is an Eastside anthem. The Celebration album featured outstanding versions of Cream’s song “I Feel Free”, Joe Zawinul’s “In A Silent Way”, as well as a cover of Van Morrison’s song “Brown Eyed Girl”. This covers features the amazing vocals of Freddie Sanchez, Steve Salas and a Latin rock groove – another great cut. Their recordings showcased a wide and varied adaptation of everything that was happening in the 70’s USA musical scene. The group’s 1973 hit “Tell Her She’s Lovely”, which featured the strong vocals and lyrics of Jerry Salas was also a Top 40 hit. Its self-titled album El Chicano went Gold in 1973. The group was voted the #1 Jazz group in 1970 after achieving 5 Gold records over a forty-year period. There have been ten albums and more than 50 compilations. Their music has also been used in major movies. They have received numerous awards for their community service and charitable work that supports children and the arts. El Chicano has performed with major artists such as Jose Feliciano and the Allman Brothers, Chaka Khan, Jose Feliciano, Lou Rawls, Sonny, and many others.

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