Santa Cruz Good Times

Sunday
Dec 28th
Text size
  • Increase font size
  • Default font size
  • Decrease font size

In Flight

music_CarlosReyesThe globe-trotting angelic strings of Carlos Reyes
What do MC Hammer, Marky Mark, the Pope and now Don Quixote’s have in common? They can all attest to the musical talents of Paraguayan violinist and harpist Carlos Reyes.

A child prodigy—he picked up the violin at age 3 and a half and had his first public performance at 5—Reyes grew up under the influence of his father, Carlos Reyes, Sr., a musical and national hero in Paraguay.

Through the years, the younger Reyes mastered the harp, guitar, bass, mandolin and keyboards, but his father always had one dream for his son: to become a respected classical concert violinist.

“My father started it all with me,” says Reyes, who remembers his house being filled with string instruments as a child. “We played our Paraguayan folk music as a family and did shows together, but that was just a side thing; the concert soloist was what I was being groomed for.”

Though he admits that his father was hard on him at times during his musical education—he “blew a fuse” when he found out Reyes was playing harp behind his back—he learned a great deal from him and his music, weaving a love of Paraguay into his passionate melodies.

After working closely with professional music teachers and being under constant pressure to achieve perfection, Reyes’ hard work paid off when he earned the role of a soloist at the Oakland Symphony at 14 years old. Scared, yet excited to play with the big boys, Reyes combined his Paraguayan heritage plus his mother’s Colombian background to create a signature sound that would eventually earn him the right to perform alongside big names like Willie Nelson, The Doobie Brothers and Cuban flautist “El Tosco.”

“I knew early on that it felt special to see people smile and feel good when they heard me play,” says Reyes. “I feel God gave me a gift with music and the best way to be a steward of this gift is to keep sharing it—give it away and help heal with it.”

Taking a break from touring with Steve Miller, the man behind 1973’s “The Joker,” Reyes will bring his music to Felton on Thursday, Dec. 30 at Don Quixote’s. Co-headlining with acoustic guitarist Peppino D’Agostino, Reyes’ performance will give audience members a sneak peek at his upcoming live album, recorded this past summer and set to be released in January.

While his credits include tracks for artists like MC Hammer and Marky Mark, as well as background music for children’s shows Sesame Street and Villa Alegre, these days, Reyes performs primarily with his own Bay Area-based group, Carlos Reyes and his Electric Symphony. Having lived here since he was a young boy, Reyes finds Northern California to be a music Mecca.

“We have everything here musically,” he says. “Any style you want to hear, [or] play with—[there are] musicians to choose from and an open mind to try different things musically.”

With that frame of mind, Reyes’ music has taken him from the Vatican, to the 2000 World’s Fair in Germany, to the streets of Cuba, to the deathbed of a 101-year-old world-class pianist—who, after Reyes finished playing the harp, said, “Thank you son, now I can die in peace.”

Having had a whirlwind of a career so far, Reyes’ multi-cultural experiences on tour have made him the man he is today: optimistic about music’s power to unite and change the world. “Music brings down borders and fences,” says Reyes. “It’s a hard road but a beautiful journey.”


Carlos Reyes will perform with Peppino D’Agostino 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 30, at Don Quixote’s, 6275 Highway 9, Felton. Tickets are $15. For more information, call 603-2294.

Comments (0)Add Comment

Write comment
smaller | bigger

busy
 

Share this on your social networks

Bookmark and Share

Share this

Bookmark and Share

 

Dancing In the Rain

District Attorney Bob Lee’s death in October stunned the Santa Cruz community, but he had battled cancer fiercely—and privately—for more than a decade. Now one of his closest friends reveals the remarkable inside story

 

Our Gifts - Fiery Sacrificial Lights to One Another

Wednesday is Christmas Eve, Hanukkah ends and the Moon is in Aquarius, calling for the new world to take shape at midnight. Thursday morning, the sun, at the Tropic of Capricorn, begins moving northward. The desire currents are stilled. A great benediction of spiritual force (Capricorn’s Rays 1, 3, 7) streams into Earth. Temple bells ring out. The heavens bend low; the Earth is lifted up to the Light. Angels and Archangels chant, “On Earth, peace, goodwill to all.” As these forces stream into the Earth they assume long swirling lines of light, in the likeness of the Madonna and Child. The holy child is born. Let our hearts be “impressed” with and hold this picture, especially because Christmas may be difficult this year. Christmas Day is void of course moon (v/c moon), which means we may feel somewhat disconnected from one another. It’s difficult to connect in a v/c moon. Try anyway. Mercury joins Pluto in Capricorn. Uh oh … we don’t bring up the past containing any dark and difficult issues. We are to attempt new ways of communicating—expressing aspirations and love for one another, replacing wounding, sadness, lostness, and hurts of the past. Play soothing music, pray together, have the intention for peace, harmony and goodwill. Don’t be surprised if things feel out of control and/or arguments arise. We remember, before a new harmony emerges, chaos and crisis come first to clear the air. We are to be the harmonizers. Christmas evening is more harmonious, less difficult, more of what Christmas should be— radiations of love, sharing, kindness, compassion and care. Sunday, Feast Day of the Holy Family, is surprising. Wednesday is New Year’s Eve, the last day of 2014. Taurus moon, a stabilizing energy, ushers in the New Year. Happy New Year, everyone! Peace to everyone. Let us realize we are gifts radiating diamond light to one another. Living sacrificial flames!

 

The New Tech Nexus

Community leaders in science and technology unite to form web-based networking program

 

Let My People Go

There’s a lot to like in Ridley Scott’s maligned ‘Exodus’
Sign up for Good Times weekly newsletter
Get the latest news, events

RSS Feed Burner

 Subscribe in a reader

Latest Comments

 

Best Bites of 2014

A look back at the year in good taste

 

What downtown business is good for both one-stop shopping and last-minute gifts?

The Homeless Garden Project store. Because it is a community effort and has really useful and beautiful things, and allows you to connect with a lot of folks who are doing great work in Santa Cruz. Miriam Greenberg, Santa Cruz, UCSC Professor

 

Vino Tabi Winery

One of Santa Cruz’s most happening areas to go wine tasting is in the westside’s Swift Street Courtyard complex. Ever since a group of about a dozen wineries got together and formed Surf City Vintners (SCV), the place has been a hive of activity, and a wine-tasting mecca. Adding to the mix is the lively Santa Cruz Mountain Brewing beer company—making Swift Street Courtyard a perfect spot for a glass of wine or a pitcher of ale.

 

Betty’s Eat Inn

Yes, she’s a real person; no, this isn’t her