More Love in the Land of 1000 Dances

L.A.'s music community comes out in support of Cory Silva and family

By Frankie Firme ~ Contributing Editor
Published on LatinoLA: February 3, 2010

More Love in the Land of 1000 Dances

I've been hearing all these great stories about people making sacrifices and sending millions of dollars of aid to the people Haiti. That's beautiful.

I've been hearing all these great stories about how people are opening their hearts & wallets & homes and taking in children from impoverished countries like Africa, Asia, & South America. That's nice.

A couple of months ago, a large number of L.A. artists from the Chicano Music world fell out in honor of singer/musician PETE PEREZ, and gave a tribute concert to help raise money for Pete's funeral expenses. A real beautiful showing.

Also a couple of months ago, a couple of fund-raising events, including a tribute concert, helped raise thousands of dollars in honor of SFV singer ISSAC AVILA, to help pay his daughter's educational needs, and to help pay for a memorial gravestone. Nice‘«™

Despite a killer and unfair economy, tough times ahead, and some hard weather in the Land of 1000 Dances, I got another story about love and good people coming to the aide of a brother and his family in the City of Angels.

It's hard enough when a family suffers the loss of a loved, but when you lose three in less than a month, the psychological and financial effects can be devastating.

That's exactly what happened to singer/song writer/music promoter CORY SILVA and his family over the Christmas and New Year's holiday season. Cory lost three close family members‘«™and things were looking bleak.

As an entertainer who has helped many a good person and good causes in a time of need, Cory reached out to friends in the music world in the only way he knew how, and friends responded, as a tribute concert was held last Sunday afternoon and early evening at the PALOMA ROOM in Montebello that was such a beautiful celebration of life, I had to bring you the exclusive play by play here on LatinoLA.

I was more than honored and humbled that the Silva family requested and allowed me to serve as host and Master of Ceremonies, as talent, family, and friends rolled in from as far away as the Inland Empire, the San Fernando Valley, Orange County, and Santa Barbara.

Opening the show was the finest Chicano Blues band on the planet, "Big Mike" Rincon and THE BLUES STRAIGHT UP, featuring Lava Gonzalez. Giving up a good set of down home L.A. blues, a happy, yet respectful mood was set as Lava closed with one of her trademark songs "Someday, Someway" that brought a loud appreciative ovation from the crowd. I simply LOVE to hear that woman sing‘«™

Next was the heavy hitting LOUIE PARRA & the MAD LATINS Band, who were simply magnificent in their performance of classic rock & roll, Soul oldies, cumbias, and ending with a soulful MIDNITERS medley. The audience loved them so much that a loud call for "One more!" from the crowd could be heard all through the Paloma Room as Louie closed with an encore performance of the heart warming ballad "I need someone". Oohh! You could have felt the love in the air as a packed and overflowing dance floor made up mostly of the large Silva family and friends filled the moment with warmth and joyful tears.

Next, it was perfect timing that the West Coast Crown Prince of Chicano Comedy, Mr. Gilbert Esquivel, hit the floor to liven up the moment and keep things from getting mournful. A master at his craft, Gilbert had us all busting a gut with laughter, as he closed with a heart warming and respectful tribute to Cory and the Silva family. Nobody does the laugh thing better than Gilbert!

Next, hot L.A. rappers PITCH VOICE came up and bounced the crowd back into mix, as the crowd boogied and clapped in unison. These young guys were hot!

Coming up after that, the crowd was treated to a memorable live performance by "Mr. Oogum Boogum" himself, Brenton Wood. It was hard to see if people were dancing, shaking Brenton's hand, or snapping pictures as the dance floor was shoulder to shoulder packed, so people simply danced at their tables.

After that, the popular TOUCH band came up and gave a beautiful tribute performance to the Silva family, ending with "Mandalay" that had a packed dance floor and screaming grateful audience.

In between the cuts, popular DJ "Big Daddy" Ruben was spinning & mixing to everyone's heart's content, keeping it lively and real, and making sure everybody was having a good time.

Next, after a brief solemn moment where singer Cory Silva and some family members fought back tears to thank all the attending audience, family members, and performers for their support and love, the AFTER DARK band took the stage with Cory doing a couple of numbers before calling up brother Keith who nailed a beautiful rendition of "Ooh Baby, Baby", with singer PEPE MARQUEZ smoothing in the backup vocals.

Then, as the microphone was turned over to Pepe, he whipped the band into a frenzy with hard hitting boogie versions of "Tighten up" and "Suavecito", adding some of his own innovations and original ad lib lyrics that had the girls screaming.

Still keeping the band on stage while a screaming audience applauded Pepe, Cory called up the ultra-talented SARA MORGAN, who simply melted hearts with a sultry romantic version of "At Last", before whipping everybody up with a hard hitting classic disco medley that included some "Very WOW!" dance moves on stage.

Coming up right after that was the one of L.A.'s favorite "bad boys", ROCKY PADILLA, who joined the band with brother Danny, who, despite pending brain surgery, still came out and gave up some killer saxophone that brought the evening to a nice close as DJ Big Daddy closed off with some mellow dance music for us all.

Many other artists were in the house enjoying the show and supporting the cause included singers Hank Castro, Robert Benavides, Bruce Soto, Pete Alvarado and so many others that I ask forgiveness if I left you out.

Other contributing performing artists to this fine evening of music and love included : "Conga Ray" Ybarra, Ray Carrion, Johnny Burrola, Joey Guerra, Danny Santillan, and Jimmy Espinosa.

The Silva family thanks all who came and gave of the love, support , talent, time, and wallet. It was a beautiful moment in the Land of 1000 Dances.


Note: The Silva family is still accepting much needed contributions for the three funeral expenses. Please contact: cory_silva@yahoo.com, and tell 'em you heard it from Frankie Firme & LatinoLA.com !

About Frankie Firme ~ Contributing Editor:
Frankie Firme is the Al capone of the microphone & the Hitman of West Coast Chicano Soul
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