NYC-based, Venezuela-rooted artist Mpeach is gearing up to present the Latin Radio Music Take Over, a 12-hour Internet radio marathon intended to celebrate a spectrum of Latin America’s future and classic sounds in real-time from Brooklyn p’al mundo.
The marathon, which will be hosted live at Caracas Arepa Bar, will be home to hour-long segments from Rata, Rocio Aranda-Alvarado of Museo del Barrio, Darelectric, Mex and the City, Beto and Ushka of iBomba, Precolumbian and I$la of Nenas Rudas, Riobamba, Oscar Nñ, DJ Ripley, Que Bajo?!’s Geko Jones and Uproot Andy, and organizers Mpeach and her collaborator, Austro-Mexican DJ Kyra Caruso.
I chatted with Mpeach in anticipation of this week’s 12-hour listening session to learn more about her motivation for using online streaming radio as a platform for bringing together Latin@ DJs and organizers outside of the club.
Tune in to the streaming site this Thursday between noon to midnight, or stop by Caracas Arepa Bar (291 Grand Street, Williamsburg) to listen in live.
What inspired you to create LRMTO?
I love online radio and wanted to create more outlets for Latin global culture; a place where artists and communities could be heard and streamed anywhere in the world, and where immigrant artists can meet [others in the] NY community.
This was an idea in my head for some time, so I approached my friend Kyra Caruso who has experience working in the music industry and is also a DJ, to help me process it and shape it into something doable. And LRMTO was born.
Why did you decide to organize this project independently instead of in partnership with a local radio station?
I don’t think it even crossed our minds to partner up with a radio station. I wanted to create something that had its own identity and that we had full creative control of. [We] wanted to do an audio/video online stream so we could share not only the music but the live experience as well.
I think it’s important to share music in different contexts, and to expand the experience outside of the club.
I immediately thought of Caracas Arepa Bar as a partner for space to host the live stream, because they’ve always supported the community of artists that surrounds them and have supported me in other projects too. As Venezuelan immigrants we create community together, and I like that. Also they have that perfect bar at the window of their Brooklyn location where we’ll host the event; it reminds me of the now gone East Village Radio. And we also have Dutty Artz support, Ron Santa Teresa and VAEA.
What’s the significance of pirate/independently-organized radio for you?
I guess autonomy is really important for me. But also the challenge and excitement of creating something from scratch and seeing where it goes, being able to experiment. There’s not that much space for non mainstream and more experimental Latin@ music on the radio.
You’ve done some radio projects with Caracas at Rockaway in the past– how has that experience been?
We did LRMTO sessions at Rockaway, but that was not online radio/streamed– Thursday is our first radio event. I’ve done plenty of events with Caracas at Rockaway and it’s always great to work with them, Maribel and Gato are good friends. [They’re] more like family and I feel very lucky to have their support.
What inspired you to reach out to the artists that are included on the lineup? What kinds of sounds will listeners hear on Thursday?
The music they play, the work they do, and how they’ve built communities through this music, is what inspired me most. I wanted to mix it up so there will be a variety of sounds from classic Latin and Caribbean sounds, tropical and global bass, mixed with R&B, soul, and hip-hop, to new Latin and more Electronic sounds as well.
Why was it important for you to include other institutions like el Museo del Barrio and Mex and the City?
I wanted to share their input on the importance of creating spaces for Latin@ artists, and [to have them] talk about some of the great work they’ve done. I’m very grateful that Rocio Aranda Alvarado, curator of El Museo, took the time to sit down with me and answer some questions on this matter. Also I’m exited to have Marina Garcia Vasquez from Mex and the City come talk about their book project “The New Global Mexican”.
We also have the support of the Venezuelan American Endowment of the Arts, and they’ll come talk on Thursday as well.
How is radio an important space outside the club for showcasing Latin@ artists in Brooklyn and beyond?
I think it’s important to share music in different contexts, and to expand the experience outside of the club in a space where you can also create a conversation or talk about the music, and give artists the opportunity to be heard differently. It also helps create a bigger network and audience, since it’s online so you can stream from anywhere. Latin@s in BK streaming to the world!