In March, it will be a year since “Afro-Latino” percussion ensemble Concepto Tambor bid farewell to Albuquerque, seeking the sunny shores of Long Beach, Calif.
"We love Albuquerque, but California does have a lot more industry to work with—one of the strongest reasons for moving," says Christian Orellana, drummer, vocalist and founder of Concepto Tambor. Over the phone we spoke with Orellana, who was in Colorado near the beginning of his band's Western tour. Orellana says that since moving, the band is staying busy and tours are getting bigger.
This week Concepto Tambor returns to New Mexico, making stops in Taos and Albuquerque for the Alleykat Cabaret Tour, which, in addition to an eclectic selection of music, includes performances by La Flamilia, an El Paso-based fire dancing troupe. The show is the third installment in a series of vaudevillian Concepto Tambor tours—the first was Big Top Southwest and the second was known as Poor Man’s Circus.
"We're capturing the cabaret atmosphere,” Orellana says. “What is cabaret? It's a show that delivers music, delivers dance and delivers comedy as well in an atmosphere where people are socializing—dudes are cool cats and ladies are sassy," he explains. "We're encouraging people to dress for the occasion."
A flame-laden samba-cumbia-salsa-festejo-Afrobeat-rock ’n’ roll-steeped cabaret at the very least will be interesting, but with Concepto Tambor at the helm, expect this weekend’s events to be electrifying fun.