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By RAMIRO BURR
De La Rosa, a native of Laredo, was an influential keyboardist/arranger whose tenure included stints with Jay Perez, Fandango USA and Los Big Chihuahuas. He passed away at 42 in San Antonio on Aug. 27, 2007 after a lengthy illness.
In a recent marathon mixing session in north San Antonio at Robert Ybarra's Studio Cats recording studio, producers mixed, matched and sequenced the various voices that are on the tribute song "Te Extrañamos Mucho," which was written by award-winning songwriter and fellow Laredoan Humberto Ramon of Luna Llena Publishing.
Included in the list of all stars on the CD are Little Joe, Ruben Ramos, Ramiro Herrera, David Marez, Stefani, Joe Posada, Leslie Lugo, Gary Hobbs, Pete Astudillo, and Jay Perez.Other participating artists include Elizabeth Brackman-Paniagua, Roger Velasquez, Agnes Torres, Arturo Gutierrez, Eddie Guerrero, Raul Sanchez, Rick Acosta, Jorge Alejandro, Paul Diamante, Jorge Moreno, Pancho Rodriguez, Marcos Orozco, Joey Martinez, Elio Quintanilla, Israel Maldonado, Judi De Leon, and legendary radio DJ and fellow Laredoan "Bird" Rodriguez.
The musicians that played on the song are Robert Ybarra, keyboards/guitars; Joey Sanchez, drums; Guillermo Rodriguez, bass; Mike Guerra, accordion; Joe Posada and Felo Sepulveda, saxophones.
Why does this CD project matter?
In the 58-year history of Tejano music, there have only been two previous all-star projects.In August 1985, officials produced the historic "Tejanos for Hunger" CD project. It featured many of the stars mentioned above but also now-rare performances by La Mafia, Laura Canales, Mazz, and Jimmy Edward.
Almost 10 years later, on December 1995, Arjons' club owner, Arjon Tabatabai, managed to round up the stars again for the "Canta a La Vida" benefit for the SA Aids Foundation project.
That project featured the participation of Joe Lopez, Jimmy Gonzalez, Emilio, David Lee Garza, Bobby Pulido, Roberto Pulido, Delia Gonzalez, Elsa Garcia, Stephanie Lynn, Little Joe, Ruben Ramos, Hugo Guerrero/Fandango USA, Jay Pérez, Ram Herrera, Rock Orozco, George Rivas, Noemy, Joe Jama, Blanca Velasquez, Amber Rose, Campañas de America, Oscar G, Elida Reyna, Stefani, Nydia Rojas, Joel Nava, Humberto Ramón, comedian Paul Rodriguez and actor Edward James Olmos.
The list of recording producers on the Jerry De La Rosa all-star project includes some of the top names in San Antonio's production circles -- Joe Trevino (Blue Cat Studios), Robert "Bert" Ybarra (Studio Cats), and Kurt Wipfli (for Wipfli Enterprises). Other participating studio engineers also include Richard Rosales, Severo Contreras, Raul Sanchez, Joe Leal, and Guillermo Rodriguez.
Other participating studios include David Langley Studios in Fresno CA, Legends Sound Studios In Corpus Christi, TX, Eli Molina Studio in Kingsville, Tx, Antenna Muzic Studios in Laredo, Texas, MP Recording Studios in Weslaco, Texas, SlackMonster Studio and GSM Discos Studios in San Antonio.
Wipfli also mastered the CD, titled "All-Star Tribute to Jerry De La Rosa."
The Graphic Studio's Jorge Flores served as executive producer. Production coordinators were Margo Morones, Chano Elizondo of CE Distribution and producer Bob Gallarza. The CD will be released under the De La Rose Production label, "a long-held dream that Jerry had toward the end," said Flores.
The manufacturing and replication of the CD was donated courtesy by Bharat Mehta of Triaz Digital, Austin, Texas.
Proceeds from the CD sales will go to the De La Rosa family to help cover the considerable medical and funeral expenses incurred by the family last year.
Jesse Castillo of Projes video company, produced the video of the all-star recording session.
The CD and single will be released on Aug.27, 2008. On that same day, a CD release party is tentatively scheduled at the Cadillac Bar, 212 S. Flores.. Flores said most of the artists that participated in the historic record will be on hand to sign copies of the CD and take photographs with fans.
Longtime radio consultant Danny Garcia (www.dcgvoiceworks.com) and Carmen Duran Garcia will serve as master of ceremonies.
"This is a special project for Jerry because he was such an influential musician, and a friend to everyone," said Flores.
He added that a "a beautiful aspect of this recording is that everyone, from the producers, to the artists, to the technicians donated their time for the cause."
A webpage is being set up to help promote the CD, at www.thegraphicstudio.com. It will include a biography and rare photos of De La Rosa, "a simple, caring individual who touched a lot of lives in music circles," said Flores. The website will also feature lyrics to the tribute song, a list of the artists (in order) on the main track and more details on the different versions of the tune which will be included in the CD.
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