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Confessions of a Radical Chicano Doo-Wop Singer (American Crossroads #51)

Confessions of a Radical Chicano Doo-Wop Singer (American Crossroads #51)

Current price: $29.95
Publication Date: April 13th, 2018
University of California Press


A pioneer of Chicano rock, Rubén Funkahuatl Guevara performed with Frank Zappa, Johnny Otis, Bo Diddley, Tina Turner, and Celia Cruz, though he is best known as the front man of the 1970s experimental rock band Ruben And The Jets. Here he recounts how his youthful experiences in the barrio La Veinte of Santa Monica in the 1940s prepared him for early success in music and how his triumphs and seductive brushes with stardom were met with tragedy and crushing disappointments. Brutally honest and open, Confessions of a Radical Chicano Doo-Wop Singer is an often hilarious and self-critical look inside the struggle of becoming an artist and a man. Recognizing racial identity as composite, contested, and complex, Guevara—an American artist of Mexican descent—embraces a Chicano identity of his own design, calling himself a Chicano “culture sculptor” who has worked to transform the aspirations, alienations, and indignities of the Mexican American people into an aesthetic experience that could point the way to liberation.

About the Author

Rubén Funkahuatl Guevara is a native Angelino Chicano musician, singer, and songwriter with Ruben And The Jets (cofounded with Frank Zappa), Con Safos, and the Eastside Luvers; a record producer of Chicano rock and rock en español compilations; and a performance artist, poet, short story writer, historian, journalist, and activist.

Praise for Confessions of a Radical Chicano Doo-Wop Singer (American Crossroads #51)

"...a fresh and intriguing, heartfelt and insightful cruise through the main thoroughfares, side streets, and alleyways of Chicano rock ’n’ roll, performance art, and Los Angeles cultures, past, present, and beyond, seamlessly written by this first-time author."
— Los Angeles Review of Books