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Not to mention the dozens of big and small concerts and “sock hops” every week.
At all of these events at any given time at least 50% of the crowd is Latino, yet no one seems to notice or care, it’s so ingrained in the scene and the culture out here, well it just simply… Similar to how rockabilly and psychobilly, which are very distinct and separate musical genres, can also blend together seamlessly to create one awesomely spectacular, colorful event.
As for the music, there are a lot of songs about death, but in a fun way (i.e. ” or Meteors – “Slow Down You Grave Robbing Bastard”). It’s Halloween every weekend for those who enjoy “wrecking” the pit (sort of a mix between moshing and fighting). It is often played with an upright double bass instead of the electric bass more common in modern rock music.
There are some notable exceptions to this cartoon imagery and mortal fixation. Psychobilly gained underground popularity in Europe beginning in the early 1980s, but remained largely unknown in the United States until the late 1990s.
Way down south, Chile has a big psychobilly scene with the band “Voodoo Zombie” headlining big shows. Even in Puerto Rico and the Caribbean you’ll find a psychobilly scene with bands like the “Hellboat Gamblers”. If you ever visit Buenos Aires hit up the bar “Mundo Bizarro” and hear the band “Los Primitivos”. In places like Bogota, Colombia where classic rock, punk and metal are kings there is an emerging Psychobilly scene. And while you will find an odd smattering of Latinos on the scene here and there in NYC, the Midwest and Texas, if you head West where the scene is much more prevalent and I think you’ll notice that…
When I visited Santiago and Valparaiso in 2010 I saw kids wearing “Tiger Army” and “Demented Are Go” band t-shirts and sporting wedge cuts. LA based “Calavera” who helped establish the scene in both Mexico and the U. Just next door in Montevideo, Uruguay is a hell of a rollicking band called “Rudos Wild” that plays a genre of music sometimes called punkabilly, a sound pioneered in the U. In nearby Medellin, a band called “Dorados Rockabilly Trio” is starting to make headway and turning the locals on to the joys of rockabilly. without Latinos in the rockabilly and psychobilly scenes, there essentially would be no scenes.
The West Coast is where you’ll find big events like “Viva Las Vegas”, a huge weekend gathering every April where rockabilly and psychobilly fans the world over invade Las Vegas to attend car shows, concerts, burlesque contests, etc.
While bad boys and girls have been with us since Adam and Eve, in the 50s there was an explosion of teenage car culture and the rebellious nature of rock-n-roll was the personification of that bad boy or bad girl image.
Perhaps this rang true especially in California where recent immigrants from nearby Mexico and Central America were soaking up this culture, perhaps in an effort to acculturate. Then there is rockabilly’s even slightly darker cousin, “Psychobilly”.
“Rockabilly is one of the earliest styles of rock and roll music, dating to the early 1950s.
The term “rockabilly” is a portmanteau of “rock” (from “rock ‘n’ roll”) and “hillbilly“, the latter a reference to the country music (often called “hillbilly music” in the 1940s and 1950s) that contributed strongly to the style’s development.