When Gina Chavez chose Up.Rooted as the title of her new album, she found the one word that could reflect not only major turning points in her journey, but the experiences of people who live in her songs. Chavez uses this second album to express the dichotomies of her life as an ethnically mixed American woman trying to define, and embrace, who she is and where she belongs.
Released February 2014, Up.Rooted was first aired on National Public Radio’s First Listen series, noting that her “voice stops you in your tracks the first time you hear it.” The Austin Chronicle gave the album a rare four-star review and The Boston Globe hailed Up.Rooted “as confident as it is refreshing.”
Produced by Michael Ramos, known for his work with Patty Griffin, John Mellencamp and the BoDeans, Up.Rooted is a garden of delights on which Chavez delves into cumbia, bossa nova, vintage pop, reggaeton and other genres. Her wide-ranging vocals convey delicate beauty and sharp social commentary with equal nuance, giving the album a dynamic balance between dramatic tension and relaxed grace.
As one of Austin’s most beloved world music/indie artists, Chavez is known for her impressive multi-instrumental performances and an inimitable sound inspired by various Latin rhythms and styles. At this year’s SXSW, she took home three 2013-14 Austin Music Awards, including Best Female Vocals, Best Latin Traditional and Best Latin Rock, while placing in six other categories. This followed a 2012-13 Austin Music Award for Best Latin Traditional artist, two tours in Japan as the Official City of Austin Music Ambassador, and praise from NPR’s All Songs Considered and Alt. Latino as one of eight “New Latin Artists at SXSW,” Chavez has claimed a prominent stake in the Live Music Capital. She is back from eight months of mission work in El Salvador and established Niña Arriba a college scholarship fund for girls she lived with in a gang-dominated part of San Salvador. Southern Living and Olay named Chavez one of 11 “southern iconic women who have left a beautiful footprint across the South.”
Chavez showcased Up.Rooted at a sold-out hometown record release party and fundraiser on February 15, 2014, at The Stateside Theater in Austin, TX. The event raised more than $5,000 for the Niña Arriba college fund.
Chavez is currently touring in Texas and nationally, both solo and with her full band. Up.Rooted is available worldwide on iTunes, Amazon, Spotify. Physical copies are available at Waterloo Records in Austin, TX and online at CD Baby.
Singer-songwriter Gina Chavez may be a Texan, but on her latest album she reconnects with her Latin roots, singing in both English and Spanish. Up.Rooted blends Latin folk and American pop… [hear full interview]
With Up.Rooted, Gina Chavez has established herself as the Joan Baez of her generation… [read full album review]
Gina Chavez is due onstage at the Austin Music Awards. Right now. Problem is, she’s still at her official South by Southwest showcase on Sixth Street. Fortunately, she’s only blocks from the Convention Center, and adrenaline from a packed, dynamic performance… [read full article]
Gina Chavez’s Maiz, which streams exclusively at USA TODAY, is sung in Spanish and vocalizes the effects of NAFTA on Mexican immigrants… [read full article]
The result is an album that’s as confident as it is refreshing… [read full album review]
Pride bursts from every track of up.rooted. Fiery Latina Gina Chavez celebrates her musical roots in this… [read full album review]
Her writing doesn’t waste a syllable, and she gets right to heart of the matter – with a voice that knows its way around painful ecstasy… [read full article]
Gina Chavez’s voice stops you in your tracks the first time you hear it. At least that’s how it worked for me when I came upon her performance during South by Southwest a few years ago. She was playing a… [stream full album]
It’s quite possible that Chavez has a monster indie album on her hands. She is equally comfortable singing in Spanish or English and the material is nothing short of gorgeous with songs… [read full show review]
If anybody in Austin is mixing cumbia, bossa nova, reggaeton and old-school Latin pop to better effect than Gina Chavez, we’d love to know about it. This Austin Music Awards winner recently returned from eight months of mission work in Central America to write an irresistible album detailing… [read full article]
Through a journey of dancing beats, hypnotic language and enticing rhythms Chavez’s sound fires up a soulful album that barrels over any and everything… [read full album review]
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Tune in to your local National Public Radio affiliate station this afternoon for the nationally-syndicated show All Things Considered. Why? Because I’ll be on it! I am beyond excited, and extremely humbled, to have not only visited the mothership of public radio — the NPR offices in Washington, D.C. — while touring the East Coast last week, but to have been interviewed by the director of ATC herself, Monika Evstatieva. Tis a Good Friday, indeed…
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In 2009, Gina Chavez and Jodi Granado left their comfy lives in Central Texas for cold showers and chicken buses in Central America; to live out of a suitcase in El Salvador, where volcanoes and poverty loom large; to teach dramatic teenage girls in a gang-dominated barrio for eight months. They struggled, laughed, loved and received lots and lots of hugs.
But the mission didn’t end when they landed stateside in the Summer of 2010. Gina & Jodi immediately established Niña Arriba, a college fund that offers full scholarships to a private, Catholic university for girls they lived with in Soyapango.
“Study after study has taught us that there is no tool for development more effective than the education of girls and the empowerment of women.” – Kofi Annan, Former United Nations Secretary-General
Donations directly fund low-cost, high-quality education for young women in need. Scholarships cover monthly tuition, academic fees and supplies, food and transportation for three students — Xiomara, Marta and Vanessa — and are sent directly to the university in our students’ names.
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