I'm back from a long and relaxing trip north to Prescott, to celebrate the holidays with my family and friends, chill out, read, hang out and pat a best friend on the back just before he took his wedding vows, saying quietly that it was going to be the easiest thing he'd ever do.
And what's a better way to reintegrate back to life in the Ol' Pueblo than with a Calexico show? It was their annual benefit show for KXCI, Tucson's incomparable and treasured community radio station. It was by my quick count the fifth consecutive benefit or free show Calexico has played in Tucson, quite a streak of giving back to the locals.
Opening was the brassy mambo attack of Sergio Mendoza y La Orkestra, a tremendously energetic act that could very well have time traveled from the middle 1940s. Sergio Mendoza also sat in as Calexico's piano player.
The show ended typically, with somewhere near 20 musicians on stage for the finale and encore, a crashing, leave-it-all-on-the-stage rendition of Guero Canelo. Overall, it was an amazing welcome back.
While I was in Prescott, I missed noticing that Calexico has given an exclusive new song to a Threadless promotion. Joey Burns says the song was "written at home looking out the window at the weekly funeral procession... soul migration."
Calexico - Absent Afternoon (Threadless exclusive)
Calexico - Guero Canelo (live 2006 KXCI Benefit)
Calexico - 2006-12-02 KXCI Benefit (whole show as a zip)