Mexican Corridos with Rhythm of Trap: The future of the music of L.A.I could be at a humble record ranch

In a quiet block and surrounded by hedges in Downey, the prosperous suburb and now mostly Latin in the southeastern Los Angeles, Jimmy Humilde, executive director of Humilde Records ranch, gives the final touches to the latest incorporation for its luxurious house: a tank ofSharks for interior.Soon in him there will be a leopard shark and another gray;The aquarium is at the base of a white marble sta.The bird pays tribute to the late father of humble.

“One thing I promised myself is that, if I triumphed, I would not leave the neighborhood;Now I'm two minutes away, "said humble, today 41."That's where I buy good tacos".

During the pandemic, the mansion he shares with his wife and two children became the temporary headquarters of his independent seal of his own harvest, which in recent years broke up and conquered the world - highly competitive and, often, insular - of insular - ofMexican regional music.The house has even served as a luxurious emergency platform for some of the young artists -erading from Sonora to Miami and South Central L.A.- They signed with the seal."They go crazy with the springboard," he says, shaking his arm tattooed towards the backyard.


Dressed in casual jeans, a black shirt and a tight cap that says "humble", crosses the property, borders the pool and goes to a garage the size of a complete mechanical workshop.There, keep more than a dozen Chevy Impala from the 1960s, just polished and painted in striking red, blue and green.The cars occupy a prominent place in the “Feeling Good" music video, a 2020 collaboration between the stars of humble ranch: Natanael Cano and OVI, the Chicana Snow Tha Product rapper and Long Beach's legend (and super fan of theMexican Regional Music) Snoop Dogg.Humble could not help appear in the video, happily commanding the flyer of a bluish green lowrider.


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"You can remove the boy from the neighborhood," he says humble, showing his Cartier watch."But you can't remove the boy's neighborhood".

Co -founded in 2011 with his friends José "JB" Becerra and Roque "Rocky" Venegas, a humble ranch has more than 80 artists who share a mission: to evolve the tradition of Mexican regional music for a generation of younger and biker fans.The seal defends artists whose inheritance is not only reflected in the corridos, the Mexican folk ballad raw.The resulting mixture is described as "lying down" or "trap runs".

"It's like a new era of hip-hop," he says humble."This genre entered and reformed the Mexican sound".

It is a departure from the classic Mexican regional music, which favors the analog interpretations of northern sounds, mariachi and band.After prominent bands, such as the northern tigers or toucans of TijuanThe young people of the city.In recent years, Cano albums, Regida Force and Junior H beat many legendary artists in the Mexican Billboard regional lists, and their street corridos add millions of listeners."The atmosphere of Los Angeles is our secret ingredient," he says humble.

The boom of humble ranch is inseparable from the great accelerated growth that takes place in Mexican regional music.According to a 2021 Chartmetric study, among the participation of the 100 best artists on YouTube, Mexican regional music grew by 30% in 2020.That same year, Apple Music reported a 30% increase in Mexican Regional and Spotify.800 million annual broadcasts of Mexican regional songs.


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“Mexican regional music as we know it is redefining;He is expanding his arrival beyond the borders, "said Spotify's director of Latin America, Mónica Herrera Damashek.

"Let's ignore radio and television promotions, because what we do directly speaks to people," explains humble, who stubbornly promotes its artists on YouTube and Instagram.“We continue to use the [Mexican] regional instruments, but our movement comes from urban life, life in the city.At this point, calling what we do ‘Mexican Regional’ is like calling reggaeton ‘sauce’ ".

Humble grew in Venice, once a multicultural neighborhood."My best childhood friends were black, Mexicans and a white guy called Sean," he recalls.He tried luck with some instruments, hoping to play in a band of runs one day, "but it was not good for any," he laments.“When I listened to Chalino Sánchez, at 14, I fell in love with all the movement of the Corrido, in the same way I fell in love with N.W.A.But at that time, Spanish music was not fashionable.Everyone liked rap and house ".

Humble abandoned the high school to start working in the Fare Flying Circuit in the 90s.There, he studied the world of the nightlife of Los Angeles with more string of any subject in school;It was a hip-hop party in a house or one in a warehouse, humble the promotion.It was through his other employment, in a taco truck, which forged connections with the city's Mexico American community, which at that time preferred to dance to the rhythm of band music.Thus he met his commercial partner, Becerra, selling tacos.Eventually, they started planning parties in a house in Compton that J.B.baptized as "humble ranch"."That was when people started calling me‘ Jimmy the humble, "and I just adopted it," he says.


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Humble began to reserve shows for flourishing artists, such as Komando Negro and the children of Barrón;"Then we played hip-hop and reggaeton on the west coast between sets," he adds."For girls to dance.I wanted my parties to be different, that they were from L.A."

Humble quickly expanded from the hiring of artists to their management and development.Shortly after, Children de Barrón was signed by Universal and Komando Negro for the emerging indie seal, also a home of young artists from Corrido as armed link and the late Ariel Camacho.

“Invertíamos en construir las carreras de los artistas, luego otros sellos nos los arrebataban", relata Humilde. “No sabía nada sobre cómo dirigir una empresa, pero me estaba cansando de perder gente".For 2011, Humilde Records Rancho was born.

“I admired guys like Puff Daddy, dr. Dre y Master P", agrega el ejecutivo, quien cita éxitos históricos del hip-hop como Death Row y Bad Boy Records como las bases de su negocio. Sus primeros artistas con contrato se alineaban con la cultura de marihuana del sur de California; el grupo Legado 7, del condado de Orange, acuñó el sintagma “corridos verdes". “La marihuana estaba a punto de ser legalizada aquí en California, así que llegamos al mercado de los usuarios con ellos", relata Humilde. También se arriesgó con Arsenal Efectivo -"[liderado por] el loco de Francisco [Rodríguez]", agrega."He is the one who started talking about the trap runs, because he was actually tracing. Fue a la cárcel por transportar armas ilegales a México".

By 2020, the launches of both artists reached platinum status.

Today, Natanael Cano, 19, is the most popular artist on the seal.Originally from Hermosillo, a city of Sonora, Mexico, the larguirucho singer and guitarist has registered hundreds of millions of listeners on YouTube and Spotify. El álbum de Cano de 2019, “Corridos tumbados", debutó en la lista Billboard 200 en el puesto 166, una novedad para cualquier artista de Rancho Humilde, y 80 semanas después se mantiene en la cima del ranking de álbumes regionales mexicanos.For the summer of 2020, Cano was the third most consumed Latin artist in the United States according to Nielsen Music, behind the powers of the Bad Bunny and Ozuna reggaeton.

“Cuando recibió su primer gran sueldo, ‘Nata’ compró dos cosas: una casa para su madre y una camioneta para su padre", relata Humilde, quien firmó a Cano después de verlo tocar la guitarra en Instagram. “Luego se compró el GT-R".


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Cano, who telephone from inside his sports Nissan GT-R, is a man of few words beyond his songs, detailing the volatile teenage romances, as well as his desire for stardom. “Mantengo las cosas simples", expone él.“When Jimmy hired me, I asked for $ 30.000 and a trip to Los Angeles. Le dije que lo compensaría […] e hice más que eso".


El momento clave de Cano llegó en 2019, cuando la superestrella del reguetón Bad Bunny apareció en Instagram, bebiendo tequila y cantando “Soy el diablo", de Cano, en su teléfono.The two improvised a remix, for which Bad Bunny adopted a northern cadence that accompanies the Cano acoustic guitar work. “No grabo un corrido con cualquier artista; tiene que aportar algo diferente a la mezcla", añade Cano. “Ahí es donde está la oportunidad".

Bad Bunny is one of the few outsiders who humbly investigated and approved to work with his stamp. “He rechazado a mucha gente", asegura.“Another type of reggaeton wanted to work with us, but I thought his song was a bit degrading for women. No quiero editar nada que hable mal de las mujeres; mi madre me patearía el trasero".

At the beginning of 2020, Humilde hired the 18 -year -old singer -songwriter Ivonne Galaz, the first female artist of humble ranch.Born in Ciudad Obregón, Sonora, Galaz and her older sister arrived in the United States when they were teenagers, after her mother died of leukemia. Galaz grabó su primera canción con Cano, “Golpes de la vida", que evoca su recorrido personal desde ser una chica tímida y con aspecto varonil en Sonora, a una joven segura de sí misma que vive en Los Ángeles. “No vengo a mostrarte lo que me falta", canta con una voz contralto suave y serena.

“De hecho, vivía en el mismo edificio [en el centro de Los Ángeles] que Jimmy Humilde", relata Galaz.“My brother -in -law saw him one day in the elevator;The next day I went up to play my song.I repeated it about 10 times.They had never heard a woman sing in this "before".


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Following in the footsteps of the lesbian singer of Rancherras Chavela Vargas, as well as the bold band of Long Beach Jenni Rivera, Galaz not only tries to mix the genre, but the culture that surrounds it. “Creo que para ser un buen artista en estos tiempos debes tener la mente abierta a nuevos estilos de vida, nuevos sonidos, cualquier cosa nueva", expone. “Debes estar abierto".


Cano and Galaz are two Mexican artists who managed to embrace the distinctive hybrid of Mexican-American popular culture. “Eso no pasa mucho", considera el líder de Fuerza Regida, Jesús Ortíz Paz, quien escribió “Radicamos en South Central", como un reclamo de sus raíces angelinas.“Mexicans from Mexico used to belittle those of the United States.We are from the neighborhood, but we are Mexican. Merecemos respeto".

El disco de Fuerza Regida de 2019, “Del barrio hasta aquí", debutó en el número uno en la lista de álbumes regionales mexicanos de Billboard, pero la banda no siempre se sintió tan segura.At the beginning of governed force, Ortíz explains, “we used the traditional costumes that everyone uses, with the boots and hats.When we put the shirt inside the pants, we felt fat. Ahora nos vestimos como somos, y a la gente le agradamos de todas formas".

But in addition to all fans that Humild Rancho has cultivated in recent years, it also generated some rejection by the Mexican Regional Establishment. En una entrevista en YouTube, el icónico cantante regional mexicano Pepe Aguilar, hijo de la leyenda del mariachi Antonio Aguilar, lamentó el cambio de tradición de la música y describió lo contemporáneo como “mediocre" y “barato".

“Podrías haber dicho que no te gusta esta música y punto", escupió Cano durante un video de Instagram Live, apuntando con el dedo medio hacia la cámara. "¡A mi mamá ni siquiera le gustas tú!".

Aguilar then denied having talked about Cano. “Ni siquiera sé quién eres", respondió en un video en Instagram.


Meanwhile, Cano's outburst aroused the interest of the mariachi pop superstar Alejandro Fernández, son of Vicente Fernández, aka the king of the ranchera. El mes pasado, Fernández hijo cofirmó el movimiento de corridos tumbados con un enérgico remix de la balada de Cano de 2019 “Amor Tumbado", acompañado con un conjunto tradicional de trompetas, cuerdas y acordeón.For humble, it is a sign of what will come.

“[The people of Mexico] did not always respect us, but now they are interested in how we do things. Nos gusta el hip-hop, nos gusta el low-riding", dice.“And now, [humble ranch] has 58% of the market share [Latino] in Apple. Lo que hacemos está funcionando".

Humble, which always describes itself as dynamic, does not plan to settle for being the executive director of a record label. Sus próximos proyectos incluyen un regreso ‘al estilo Diddy’ con su propia música, comenzando con su reciente lanzamiento, “Desde abajo"; un guión para una película con Ortíz como protagonista; y, en conexión con sus raíces, un campamento de verano para niños locales en un espacio de oficina que compró en el centro de L.A. “Puse un millón de dólares en ese espacio para que nuestros chicos pudieran tener oportunidades", reflexiona.“I want to represent my culture, my l.A. Esta ciudad es mi corazón".

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