According to Locos Por Juana's lead singer Itawe Correa, 2017 is going to be a busy year for the band: "We just got our agenda a couple days ago. We have a lot of local shows in January, and in March we have 25 dates all over the U.S.." There are also plans for the local Grammy nominated Latin fusion trio to release new recordings. But Correa says they are most excited to resume their monthly party La Fiesta Loca at a new location, Armando Records Miami, starting January 7.
"La Fiesta Loca is a party masquerade." Correa explained to New Times as he got ready for a quiet New Year's Eve. "Everything you find in Mardi Gras we want to bring every month to Miami. We invite different guest DJ's and artists every month and bring a little New Orleans here."
The idea for La Fiesta Loca began six years ago when Los Por Juana held it at the long gone club, The Stage. They held it for a year at Wynwood Yard which Correa described as an amazing venue, but one where they had to bring their own sound equipment which made things difficult.
Enter Armando Records Miami, where they will now host the festivities. "Armando Records is new in town but we knew the space from when it was Vagabond. The original in Bogota is one of the most amazing venues. We met the founder when we were in Columbia. They offered themselves (for La Fiesta Loca) to have their sound system and two stages. It all happened fast. We only have two weeks to prepare, but sometimes you don't need to plan a party."
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What they do have planned so far for the January La Fiesta Loca is a live show from Locos Por Juana, along with a set from Tomas Diaz, lead singer of Spam AllStars. One monthly tradition they're making sure to bring back is what they call La Ora Loca which Correa explained as "one hour of the DJ playing crazy music from all the places that celebrate Carnival, from Venezuela to Brazil to Puerto Rico to New Orleans."
Beyond throwing La Fiesta Loca every month and touring, Correa shared how else he plans to keep occupied over 2017. "This fall I'm going to work on a solo album. Right now I'm also working on something cool with Emily Estefan. She's the talented daughter of Emilio and Gloria Estefan. We're doing the soundtrack for this movie, Vandal. It's about the history of graffiti in Miami and how Wynwood came out. We're texting each other left and right about sounds to make for it."
But Correa says he'll continue to devote most of his creative attention to his musical baby, Locos Por Juana. The band got its start all the way back in 2000, when they started mixing bilingual lyrics with Cumbia, Champeta and Afro-Colombian rhythms - sounds that are celebrated with their La Fiesta Loca. "We got a lot of messages from people that they were missing the party. Now it's back."
La Fiesta Loca
9 p.m. Saturday, January 7, at Armando Records Miami, 30 NE 14th St., Miami; armandorecords.org. 786-450-2260.