La Marisoul

This exclusive web extra features a performance by Marisoul Hernandez a.k.a La Marisoul of La Santa Cecilia singing a cover of the classic Smith's song "Shoplifters of the World Unite." In this exclusive interview with KCET, Marisoul talks about her music and how Ricardo Flores Magón continues to be a source of inspiration.

Why did you choose to sing The Smith's "Shoplifters of the World Unite" for this performance?

Quetzal and I met up and shared and discussed different songs -- a song of U2 or algun corrido and other artists, but I think we both agree that this is a story of a character, un personaje of L.A. history. And I think that Chicanos and Latinos have a very big connection to Morrissey and in this song Morrissey says, "Shoplifters of the world unite and take over." And I think that also represents L.A. too. That idea, that passion that we all have.

Marisoul Hernandez.

Why is there such a strong relationship between Latinos in Los Angeles and Morrissey?

You know what, I don't know. That's funny because Quetzal is a huge Morrissey fan and I had a lot of friends that liked it and you know, it's a whole thing. It's how you dress, what you listen to, what car you drive, how you have your hair and things like that. And I'm fascinated by it because I'm not really a huge Morrissey fan. But obviously Quetzal was and I thought, man, we're doing a show about a figure in history that was in L.A. and why not include that in the story of L.A. too -- that love relationship between Latinos, Chicanos, and Morrissey. Magón was also someone who wasn't from here but still had this idea, this passion of uniting and taking over.

How do you feel about telling the story of Ricardo Flores Magón?

I think this collaboration is very important. We're getting together to celebrate Ricardo Flores Magón and anarchism and L.A history with a lot of people that are or will make history with their movements, with their music, with their art, with their writings. Any excuse to express, este music and art or culture or ideas or to honor someone from L.A., I think that's a great thing because I think people sometimes think or remember Hollywood as Los Angeles and not the great history of anarchism and music and art and writing.

As a young woman that was born here and who has lived between two cultures, are there any forms of anarchism that you find relevant?

Yes. I believe so. I believe that there are still those feelings of anarchism or of revolution or of trying to change things that we don't like. I have a great example. Earlier this year, we had a show in some place in Los Angeles and after the show, there was this young man that waited after we said hi and we took photos and we put our stuff away. And he came over to me and he gave me this beautiful red panuelo and he says, 'I would like you to have this.' I was like, 'Wow, que bonito.' It was the image of this man with glasses. Underneath, it said, "Magón," with a big star and I didn't know who it was until later. And I was like, 'Wow, what a beautiful piece of work.' It's funny how life kind of gives you these little leads, no? And then a few months later, Rubén calls me up and says, 'Hey, I'm doing this show about Ricardo Flores Magón, I would like you to do a song.' And, I took out the panuelo today, and I was like, wow, how beautiful and magical life is that I can bring music and history together. So, I think it is very present with youth and with anybody, you know, who lends an ear or an eye to history, to new ideas, to changing.

La Santa Cecilia. Photo courtesy of Humberto Howard.

About La Santa Cecilia
La Santa Cecilia is a Latin band based in Los Angeles, California who play a blend of cumbia, bossa nova, boleros, and tango music. Featuring Marisoul Hernandez (vocals), Jose Carlos (accordinist, requinto), Alex Bendana (bassist), Miguel Ramirez (percussionist).

The story continues, click here to see a performance by Grammy Award-winning Los Angeles band Quetzal!

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