On a recent business trip to Monterrey, Mexico, I was asking my counterpart Jose’ what the music scene looks like south of the border, where the tacos are cheap, and the Tecate is cheaper.
“There are two types of people in Mexico” he explained, “ones who like U.S. music, and ones who like Nortena. No one likes both.”
What’s Nortena music you ask?
“Nortena is like tex-mex + country + lots of trumpets and a lot of peachy, high pitched voices. People love high pitched voices.”
Since the city is only a couple of hours from the U.S. border, there are lots of American radio stations that can be picked up, hence the U.S. type.
Once you enter the main part of the city, it’s easy to see that music is a BIG deal in Monterrey. There are billboards everywhere for various artists and groups alike. This is because Monterrey has an enormous arena in the middle of downtown that averages two to three concerts per week. Everything from local bands to big stars in Mexico to Madonna.
“People really love music here” Jose states “you even see all the mommies in their mommy vans heading to concerts. It’s crazy.”
Me being me, I ask about the local scene. “The local scene is not so good here. Now Mexico City, that’s a different story. The 'local' bands that come are all from Mexico City.”
In my two days there, it appears most people like U.S. music, primarily classic rock. Let’s just say Def Leppard would sell out every night of the week if they so chose.
“So who’s the biggest star right now in Mexico that everyone likes?” I ask.
“Oh, that’s easy, it’s those brothers.”
“Yeah! Those Jonas Brothers. They are everywhere. HUGE! Unbelievably huge! You know them?”
Damn it all. The search continues for a place on this earth that a man can hide from the Brothers Jonas.