Soulful music bolsters culture

Non-profit organization, concert highlight family values


Christian Urrutia / The Advocate

Los Compas Pachanga band leader Miguel Govea sounds off a rendition of one of the group’s more famous tunes at the Los Cenzontles Cultural Academy in Richmond on Saturday.

By Roxana Amparo, Associate Editor

It’s normal to see the youth going out and enjoying the nightlife, but now that a local spot offers a night of fun and dancing for adults, it is safe to say they are enjoying the nightlife as well.

Los Cenzontles Cultural Arts Academy, a non-profit organization committed to amplifying the roots of Mexican culture through classes, events, media and performances at their venue on San Pablo Avenue in Richmond, hosted a “noche cultural” on Saturday at 8 p.m.

The lead performers were Los Compas Pachangas, made up of seven family members who cover the classics and play some original songs as well. 

The ambient light didn’t reach a low. The band’s stage lights pulsated purple and pink, inviting people to crowd its edge.

The venue is big, with a lot of available seats, but by 9 p.m. the dance floor was filled.

Empty the chairs were no longer a concern as the night evolved, but once the mood shifted as the band proceeded to play, the audience joined the dance floor. With an entrance fee of $10 at the door, it allowed for an affordable experience for those in presence. The money collected goes toward helping students pay for music lessons so they can put on events for their community.

Los Compas Pachangas kept the event alive filling the venue with salsa and cumbia, and drew the audience to the dance floor once more.

It gave off a familiar feel to it with the medley of songs.

Some of the songs did not have lyrics and consisted of pure sounds and beats.

Except for when the group leader Miguel Govea yelled his distinct grito, often lyrical scream used in cumbia songs. Attracting in a larger ratio of women than men, the men in the audience were ready to jump onto the dance floor, with their partners in tow.

For those who would rather enjoy a conversation rather than stepping onto the dance floor, couches were available on the sidelines.

Although the event felt inviting to a more mature audience, there were families with young children enjoying the chips and salsa provided.

Being a non-profit organization, the event encouraged donations that will go directly to youth. Although this specific event didn’t draw in the youth, it is the kind of place any parent would enjoy when looking for fun.