On Sunday, the Grammys continued their outdated tradition of not airing any of the Latin-labeled categories on television, despite many of the artists’ transcendence in the industry as well as dominance in the charts and categories often relegated for the cookie-cutter English-language mainstream. There were, however, a couple of artists nominated in broader categories who took home a gold (plated) award and repped us well. Rodrigo y Gabriela, an experimental acoustic duo from Mexico, won Best Contemporary Instrumental Album at the 2020 Grammys for their 2019 studio album Mettavolution.
“Q Rodrigo y Gabriela ganaron un Grammy?” a fan commented on Twitter. “[And] I thought the Grammys were trash.”
Rodrigo and Gabriela are an acoustic duo from Mexico. The two refined their craft and jumped into music full force in Ireland, where they planted themselves for almost a decade. In the early 2000s, they drew attention with their flamenco tracks, rendition of Metallica’s 9-minute track, “Orion” and more. The couple is known for putting a unique instrumental spin on classics from the likes of Pink Floyd, Megadeth and more.
“In a 20-year career of playing across the world and even in the White House, there was something missing, which was a Grammy. We finally got it!” Gabriela tells Remezcla.
The good news is they’re equally excited about what’s to come. Come March, they’ll kick off a mini-tour and hopefully introduce new music. They’ll also perform at Vive Latino in Mexico City and Pa’l Norte in Monterrey, Nuevo León.
But when they’re home, Gabriela focuses on something else altogether. The 47-year-old guitar player is committed to a vegan, sustainable lifestyle and hopes to make that accessible and enticing for people in Mexico and beyond. She launched a food co-op called Cooperativa Eco-Vegana last decade and has been committed to the cause since.
“Rodrigo and I are both people who care about a lot of challenges that we are facing as a species. Mettavolution is an album that is about change and growth,” she says. “So, we truly believe that through music we can share healing at the emotional level to bring about ideas that might help to solve a lot of those challenges.”
Rodrigo says they hope to “transform as many stories as possible,” no words necessary.
In their thank you post a couple of days after the awards, Rodrigo Sanchez and Gabriela Quintero said their music is about inspiring people to keep doing the good things they do… just better. A motto they themselves live by, it would seem, based on their ever-evolving, varying sound – which has included everything from metal to punk and folk. This grammy proves what anyone who’s seen them live knows to be true and gives them a larger platform to speak on the things they’re passionate about.
“To win a Grammy gives us an opportunity to have a louder voice that is going to reach more people.”