Richard Montoya on KCRW's Guest DJ Project

Culture Clash member talks about five songs that have inspired him throughout his life

Published on LatinoLA: May 9, 2011

Richard Montoya on KCRW's Guest DJ Project

Playwright Richard Montoya rose to fame as part of the acclaimed Chicano performance troupe Culture Clash. He's outspoken and passionate about everything he does and music is no different. In his Guest DJ Project set for Los Angeles public radio station KCRW (89.9FM and KCRW.com), he talks about five songs that have inspired him throughout his life.

"I've been in L.A. about 20 years and there's just a constant soundtrack, always in my head. I live in the East Side, near Dodger Stadium, and I always travel to the West Side and the Valley or even the O.C. or out to the desert. But, also, I've found myself in far reaches of places like Chiapas, and Oventic or the wrong side of, you know, downtown Detroit with MC5. And in those outreaches this music has inspired me and comforted me. It can sometimes like to be a political artist is kind of a lonely thing sometimes."

He calls on Los Lobos, The Tattooed Love Dogs and Pepi Ginsberg to keep him company, saying Pepi's "The Contortionist" is "like an emergency Brooklyn party-mobile has just pulled up in front of your gloomy house in Echo Park and it's time to party."

Richard Montoya's full Guest DJ set is offered streaming, for download and as a podcast (w/ a transcript) here.

He also praises the political leanings of Zack de la Rocha, who he calls a "true son of the City of Angels," and the White Stripes, particularly on their track "Icky Thump".

"Jack White. No one asks him, no one tells him, He kind of takes up a kind of struggle for us in terms of immigration and anti immigration hysteria. When a white kid from Detroit picks up the mantle for us, it's terribly helpful man. It puts a tear in my eye and it just really inspires me."

The Guest DJ Project delves into the musical passions of a wide variety of cultural trendsetters, asking them to choose 5 songs that have inspired them throughout their lives. The show has played host to a wide variety of creative individuals ÔÇô from street artist Mister Cartoon and actor Mark Ruffalo to Chef David Chang and actress Rashida Jones. Find them all in the archives here.

Richard Montoya Guest DJ Set Tracklist:

1.) Hold On- Los Lobos
2.) Ocean View- One Day As a Lion
3.) The Contortionist- Pepi Ginsberg
4.) Icky Thump- The White Stripes
5.) Shredded Rawhide- The Tattooed Love Dogs

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