Junior Mesa Named to YouTube Music’s Foundry 2021 Independent Artists Class

Junior Mesa has found(ry-ed) his place on YouTube…

YouTube Music has revealed its Foundry New Class of 2021, with 27 independent artists representing 14 countries across a variety of genres, including the Latino American singer.

Junior Mesa

This is YouTube’s largest class to date since the program’s inception in 2015.

The global artist development program, which “helps independent artists use music and storytelling to engage fans across borders,” per a press release, provides artists with marketing, promotion, and development support, and tools to help set them up for long-term success.

In addition to Junior Mesa, seven Latin artists have been included on the list this year — including three who were recently featured on Billboard’s Emerging Latin Artists to Discover in 2021 list. They join other Latinx Foundry alumni like Natanael CanoEladio Carrion, Cuco and Omar Apollo.

Here’s a look at this year’s highlighted Latin acts, with quotes and more info from YouTube here:

Ambar Lucid
Country: U.S.A.
Genre: Alternative/Indie
Ambar Lucid is a New Jersey-born singer-songwriter of Dominican and Mexican descent. She began to pen her own songs in her mid-teens, and ultimately put her hazy, bilingual indie-pop tracks onto SoundCloud.

“To me, being independent means having creative control and power over myself and my art,” she says to YouTube. “Success means being able to do things my way while having a loyal group of supporters with me throughout my journey.” Earlier this year, Lucid signed with independent label 300 Entertainment.

Bad Milk
Country: Colombia
Genre: Urban/Pop
Bad Milk (born Manuelita Garcia) has developed a following with her soulful vocals and urban-infused pop tracks. Her first single of 2021, “Ego,” was helmed by Latin hitmaker Ovy on the Drums, who also gave her his stamp of approval on his track “Angelito,” featuring Bad Milk and fellow Colombian newcomer Beéle.

“I love to experiment with different sounds and portray different emotions. I don’t enjoy putting my creativity in a box,” she says. “I see music as a mission. It’s definitely what I came here to do.”

Blessd
Country: Colombia
Genre: Urban/Hip-Hop
Also hailing from Colombia is Blessd (real name: Stiven Mesa Londoño), whose witty freestyle and sweet, crisp vocals are landing him major collaborations. The 21-year-old rapper, who kicked off his career in 2019, has already dropped tracks alongside Maluma, The Black Eyed Peas, Ovy on the Drums, The Rude Boyz and Piso 21.

Forming part of YouTube’s Foundry class is a great opportunity for Blessd, who mentioned that “being an artist is a dream I always had and also something I needed to do for my family. As an independent artist, I feel free.”

Junior Mesa
Country: U.S.A.
Genre: Alternative/Indie
California-based newcomer Junior Mesa is bringing a fresh sound to indie music while staying inspired by the greats. With songs such as “Far Out,” “Losing my Grip” and “Pushing Away,” the singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist is immersed in a trippy psych-pop sound that’s influenced by artists such as Ella Fitzgerald, Jimi Hendrix and Sly & The Family Stone.

“Being independent is a mentality,” he assures. “Claiming independence is saying: We are not the same! I will not conform to your standards. I will express myself in a way that satisfies my will, not yours!”

Marina Sena
Country: Brazil
Genre: Pop
What Brazilian newcomer Marina Sena loves about being an independent artist is creating a sound that incorporates traditional genres such as Bossanova and funk with a soulful, seductive twist. “To be an independent artist is to have determination, free will, freedom,” she notes. “After starting my solo career on the right foot and being about to release my first full album, there’s nothing better than support to bet on my sound and make it reach people all over the world.”

Tokischa
Country: 
Dominican Republic
Genre: Urban
With her bold attitude and unapologetic lyrics, Tokischa is changing the Tokischa dembow game one single (and collaboration) at a time. With songs such as “Tukuntazo,” “El Rey de la Popola” and “No Me Importa” making the rounds, the Dominican trapera has already garnered the attention of artists such as J Balvin, Anuel and Karol G. “My music has no labels,” she says. “It’s a free, new wave. I’m excited to stand out in countries that are far from my culture.”

Tuyo
Country: Brazil
Genre: Alternative/Indie
Brazilian trio Tuyo — made up of Machado, Lio and Lay Soares — is making waves with an organic sound that experiments with folk music, lo-fi hip-hop and synth-pop. The São Paulo-based act says that their music is “more about a feeling” than a genre. “We mix very delicate vocals with strong rhythms. It’s music for floating, for flying. We are whole, happy, and successful when we can communicate with people through music.”

Omar Apollo to Perform at Atlanta’s Music Midtown Festival

Omar Apollo is headed to The Big Peach

The 24-year-old Mexican-American singer-songwriter and entrepreneur will perform at this year’s Music Midtown Festival in Atlanta, which is getting a reboot.

Omar Apollo

The popular downtown gathering that took a year off in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic is ready to roar back this fall with a lineup packed with superstar voices.

Among the headliners for the September 18-19 event at Piedmont Park are Miley Cyrus, the Jonas Brothers, Maroon 5, 21 Savage and DaBaby.

Other acts scheduled to appearinclude: Megan Thee Stallion, Machine Gun Kelly, Adrian Quesada’s Black Pumas, Jack Harlow, AJR, Yungblud, Bleachers, Dashboard Confessional, Surfaces, Lauv, 24KGoldn, Latto, Oliver Tree and Tierra Whack.

Tickets purchased for the 2020 edition will be honored and organizers said that a limited number of general admission passes are on sale now before the prices go up on Friday (June 4) at 10:00 am ET.

The summer’s festival scene is beginning to heat up following last year’s total shutdown, though at press time Music Midtown had not announced whether this summer’s gathering will be at Piedmont’s full, pre-pandemic 70,000-person capacity. Other events, such as Chicago’s Lollapalooza, have said they will return at full capacity, though attendees will need to provide proof of COVID-19 vaccination or, for those not vaccinated, a negative test result within 24 hours of attendance.

Adrian Quesada & Black Pumas to Perform at This Year’s Austin City Limits Festival

Adrian Quesada is takin’ it to the Limits

The 44-year-old Latino Grammy-winning guitarist and producer and singer/songwriter Eric Burton’s Black Pumas will be performing at this year’s Austin City Limits festival.

Adrian Quesada, Black Pumas

The event will be taking pace over two weekends, October 1-3 and October 8-10 at Austin’s Zilker Park.

Headlining this year’s two-weekend festival are George Strait, Billie Eilish and Stevie Nicks.

In addition to Quesada’s Black Pumas, top billing honors at ACL Fest 2021 also go to Miley CyrusRüfüs Du SolDaBabyErykah BaduMegan Thee Stallion and Doja Cat.

Three-day tickets are on sale now at aclfestival.com.

This year’s lineup features standout talent including Modest MousePhoebe BridgersJack HarlowJon PardiFinneasChet Faker (Weekend One), Sofia Valdes, La Doña, Dermot KennedyTierra WhackTanya Tucker (Weekend One), Omar Apollo, Trixie Mattel (Weekend Two) and much more.

Homegrown Texans include St. Vincent (Weekend One), Marc RebilletSurfacesDayglowMissioCharley CrockettHeartless Bastards (Weekend Two) and Asleep at the Wheel (Weekend One).

“Music is coming back strong to the Live Music Capital of the World,” said Austin Mayor Steve Adler. “The return of Austin City Limits as an in-person festival celebrates that our efforts as a community to become vaccinated are working. Health and safety remain our top priority, and we will work closely with the organizers and Austin Public Health to ensure ACL Fest is in line with our health standards. We must continue to get everyone vaccinated and keep up our success.”

ACL Fest organizers are in regular communication with local health and public safety officials and will follow current recommendations and guidelines at the time of the festival. As the weekends approach, ACL Fest patrons will receive regular updates with important information regarding safety policies and procedures before entering Zilker Park. ACL Fest will partner with the City of Austin and Austin Public Health to encourage vaccination in the months prior to the festival.

“Austin City Limits 2021 is a result of successful vaccine efforts and more than a year’s worth of protection measures,” said Austin-Travis County Interim Health Authority Dr. Mark Escott. “Taking the shot is our shot at getting things back to normal and we envision this happening before October if we stay the course as a community.”

Zilker Park has been the home of the Austin City Limits Music Festival for two decades. Since 2006, ACL Festival, in partnership with Austin Parks Foundation, has generated more than $41 million towards improvements to Zilker Park and parks across the city. In 2019, through a percentage of ticket sales, fans of ACL Fest contributed $6 million to improving Austin’s public parks, trails and green spaces.

Here’s the full lineup:

Omar Apollo to Take Part in YouTube Music’s On-Demand Video Festival #FoundryFest

Omar Apollo is joining the Foundry

YouTube Music‘s first-ever #FoundryFest will feature 20 performances, premieres, videos and discussions with YouTube Foundry artists, including the 23-year-old Mexican American bilingual singer-songwriter.

Omar Apollo

The “So Good”singer will be joined by Dua LipaBeabadoobee and Rina Sawayama as part of the festival, which launches at 9:00 am ET on Friday, October 23.

Fans will be able to scroll through the offerings in the on-demand video series by searching #Foundryfest on YouTube, with new treats popping up throughout the day on the artist’s official You Tube channels.

“YouTube Music Foundry was a great resource to me early in my career, and I’m happy to be an alum of a program that helps support emerging artists from all over the world,” said 2015 Foundry alumni Lipa in a statement.

Other past and current Foundry artists from the service’s artist development program slated to participate in the event include: Arlo Parks, Joesef, Rauw Alejandro. Gabriel Garzon-Montano, Natanael Cano, Guapdad 4000, Lost Stories, Tessa Violet, Baby Rose, Michael Brun, Eladio Carrion, Novelbright, Lime Cordiale, Rei Ami, Adam Melchor, TESSÆ and Isabella Lovestory.

As with last week’s #SOSFEST, which collected funds for the National Independent Venue Association, #FoundryFest will raise money to support the nearly 3,000 U.S. venues, festivals and promoters who’ve been severely impacted by the COVID-19 shutdown.

“YouTube created Foundry in 2015, to celebrate developing artists from around the world and help them build a global fanbase, which holds true today. Artists are always ingenious, creative problem solvers, but I’m especially impressed by how they’ve navigated change this year,” said Naomi Zeichner, YouTube’s Artist Partnerships Lead in a statement. “#FoundryFest is a testament to the resiliency of the artist community, and I’m excited for fans to explore what these artists are creating right now, and hear more about their experiences this year.”

Caifanes to Perform at This Year’s Tropicália Music and Taco Festival

It’s time for Tropicália and tacos for Caifanes

Goldenvoice has announced the return of Tropicália Music and Taco Festival, with the Mexican rock en español band joining the lineup.

Caifanes

Takin place on November 9 and 10 in Southern California, the two-day festival will feature performances from Caifanes, Los Tigres Del NorteKali Uchis and Chicano Batman at its new location at the Pico Rivero Sports Arena grounds in Los Angeles County.

Enanitos VerdesHombres GNatalia LafourcadeZoeCucoBoy PabloOmar ApolloMaldita VencidadPaquita La Del BarrioYellow DaysWallowsThe DrumsFidlarBomba Estereo and more will also perform at this year’s fest.

The packed lineup also includes Beach FossilsOh SeesChulita Vinyl ClubMen I TrustPeach PitSALESLos Angeles NegrosLos Cadetes De Linares, Los Freddy’sand Los Hurricanes.

After two years in Long Beach, the Latin indie music festival will relocate and partner with L.A. Taco. The Los Angeles-based taco-focused website will curate the vendors for the first time, including Teddy’s Red TacosBalam Mexican Kitchen and Triple Threat, with more to be announced.

https://twitter.com/Tropicalia_Fest/status/1168963130136944640?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1168963130136944640&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.billboard.com%2Farticles%2Fnews%2Ffestivals%2F8528976%2Fcaifanes-los-tigres-del-norte-tropicalia-festival


Mon Laferte to Perform at the Immigrant Rights-Themed “Selena for Sanctuary” Concert

Mon Laferte is taking on the music of a legend… And it’s all for a good cause.

The 35-year-old Chilean singer-songwriter will perform at “Selena for Sanctuary,” a free concert that’s part of the summer festival Lincoln Center Out of Doors.

Mon Laferte 

The concert aims to raise awareness about the dire situation of undocumented immigrant that has caused a national outcry, with the music of Selena being used to entertain and educate people about the plight of undocumented immigrants facing deportation.

“I am very excited to be part of this event,” said Laferte, a Latin Grammy winner. “I admire Selena and I grew up singing her songs. It is an honor for me to be able to sing her songs and to support this initiative with a subject like migration, which concerns us all.”

The show will also feature singers Gaby Moreno, Cuco and Nina Diaz, as well as special guest appearances by guitarist Chris Perez, Selena’s widower; Omar Apollo, and August Eve.

Created by Doris Munoz, daughter of undocumented immigrants, “Selena for Sanctuary” pays tribute to the most successful artist in Latin music while fighting for a cause. It arrives at the outdoor stage of the prestigious Lincoln Centerafter having smaller editions in South California.

“This event started as a simple idea and call to action after the current administration threatened our community’s sanctuary cities which affected my working-class undocumented parents,” Munoz said, referring to the policies of President Donald Trump.

She added: “It only feels necessary to leverage the platform we have been blessed with to help our community in need. This event is as personal as it gets, there are millions of families like my own and if this inspires at least one person to get involved we’ve done our job.”

More than two decades after her passing, Selena Quintanilla still inspires fans and musicians alike.

“We know Selena is a Tejano music icon and a legend, but beyond that, she represents the Latin American people as someone who fought for her dreams, overcoming many difficulties, always defending tooth and nail the Latino roots she carried inside,” Moreno said in an email.

Selena broke barriers for women in Latin music and opened the floodgates for a new generation of contemporary artists of Latin descent who would go on to enjoy huge popularity with mainstream American audiences.

She was fatally shot by her fan club’s president at 23. She has sold more than 65 million units worldwide, making her the best-selling female artist in Latin music history.

To Cuco, the late Tejano star launched a new era of representation for people of color in the industry.

“This event is important to me because it paves a way for people that went through the same struggle that my parents went through,” said the Mexican-American singer.