Music A-chord-ing to Lillian: Andrés

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The room was dark except for the cool colored lights shining on the stage. It was mostly quiet with just the low chatter of everyone in the crowd until the words, “I was the love of your life, you weren’t even close to mine” were heard through the speakers and everyone jumped to life. On Friday, November 22, Andrés Aparicio came all the way from Bakersfield, California, to perform at Lefty’s Live Music in downtown Des Moines during his latest tour. He finished off his opening song, “Andréspacito”, from his newest album Once Upon a Time in Bakersfield and stunned the crowd with the lyrics “When you’re up on a stage, don’t be the hero that they want, but what they need.”

Andrés’s music is a delightful combination of jazz, latin, pop, hip-hop, and rock music. Before listening to his music, I had never been a fan of pop or hip-hop, but the twist he puts on these genres by mixing them with the other genres is so unique and somehow works together perfectly that I can’t get enough of it. 

Not only is Andrés an incredibly talented musician and writer, but he’s a fantastic performer as well. Throughout his set, he talked to the crowd about his personal life and his inspirations. Something he said that really stuck with me is that he wants to be a musical hero, not just a musical artist. My friends and I still reference and quote the jokes and anecdotes Andrés shared. I also learned how to salsa dance (although it’s mediocre at best) thanks to Andrés teaching the audience how to salsa for one of his songs. 

As he ended his set, Andrés announced that he was giving free hugs and would love to talk to people. Of course, I went over to talk to him and he was such a down to earth guy. (Still can’t believe I got to meet and take a photo with Andrés!) I went with some friends who are native Spanish speakers, and Andrés talked to them in Spanish and joked with them.

Overall, Andrés was definitely the best concert I’ve been to so far. His music was unique and sounded amazing, his performance was fun and engaging, and he is also just a great person with an admirable goal in mind: to be heroic with his music and be a positive influence in the world.