From the director of The Other Side of Immigration: a film that celebrates the music and culture of Mexico's Huasteca region.
Click the photo above to watch a video about this project.
A Mexican Sound takes you on a journey to Mexico with award-winning documentary filmmaker Roy Germano to explore the wonders of a unique style of music called son huasteco. The film not only introduces you to the music itself, but also to the people who play it, dance to it, and love listening to it. A Mexican Sound is a fun, uplifting film that celebrates the beauty of Mexico, the warmth of the Mexican people, and the richness of Mexican culture. It will show you that there's a lot more to Mexico than the problems we constantly hear about in the news. A lot of filming is already done, but we can't finish this film without your support. For more, check out the trailer below and listen to a story about son huasteco (and this film) that recently aired on NPR's Weekend Edition.
NOTE: DVDs are now being offered as rewards at the $25 level!
ABOUT ME/MY WORK. My name is Roy Germano. I shot, directed, and edited a feature length documentary called The Other Side of Immigration and a popular internet video of two young women climbing the US-Mexico border fence. I self-funded The Other Side of Immigration on a tiny budget, so I know how to stretch a dollar and make a great final product! The Other Side of Immigration won the 2011 American Library Association Notable Video Award, has been called "a must-see for anyone serious about the subject" and has screened at over 100 film festivals, universities, and community events. The film premiered 3 years ago and is still touring! My work has been featured by media outlets like The Huffington Post, The Economist, Fox News, Telemundo, Univision, and many others.
HOW DOES KICKSTARTER WORK? Kickstarter is a safe, secure, and reputable fundraising website. This isn’t charity: you pledge money to help me finish the film and then you become a part of the team and get things in return. No money exchanges hands unless we reach my fundraising goal by April 8 at 3pm. Kickstarter is all or nothing, so please contribute early and tell your friends! Note: your credit card will not be charged until April 8 (at the earliest) and only if we make the fundraising goal. For more on how Kickstarter works, see these Frequently Asked Questions. $60,000 is an ambitious goal, but I know we can do it! Thanks for your support!
Xilitla, San Luis Potosí, Mexico—known as "the pearl of the Huasteca."
WHAT IS SON HUASTECO? Son huasteco is played in small, mountainous communities in the Huasteca, a region of Mexico located in the northeast and central-east of the country. Son huasteco is very intense and energetic. It is built around rapid violin flourishes, falsetto singing, and the driving rhythms of two special guitars (the jarana huasteca and the quinta huapanguera). It’s a huge sound for just 3 musicians, and maybe even sounds a little crazy upon first listen! In live performances, an additional rhythmic element is added when people stomp and dance on a huge wooden platform called a tarima. If you give son huasteco a chance, I'm sure you'll come to appreciate it and love it.
THE LIVE PERFORMANCE. You have to experience a live son huasteco performance to really appreciate this music—a big reason why I'm making this documentary. The rhythm of the dancers can't be replicated in a recording studio. Live performances are also very spontaneous, and son huasteco musicians love to improvise. They make up lyrics that poke fun at people in the audience, reference people or places, make up colorful jokes—anything to get a laugh or reaction from the crowd. Here's a great example from a performance by Los Camperos de Valles, arguably the best son huasteco trio ever.
WHO IS IN THIS FILM? A Mexican Sound will be full of performances, personal stories, and history. It will look and sound beautiful. During our journey through Mexico, you will meet the greatest son huasteco trio of all time: Los Camperos de Valles. You'll also meet many small-time trios that make their living playing parties and bars. You’ll meet a couple who fell in love while dancing to son huasteco. You’ll meet a man who started a weekly son huasteco festival in Xilitla, Mexico. You’ll meet the husband-and-wife team that has been recording son huasteco music for 40 years. Finally, you’ll meet a new generation of young people from the Huasteca who are keeping this music alive and making it all their own. This new generation of musicians (which includes many women and young children) is using CDs, mp3s, and YouTube to learn a style of music that, in the past, was usually only passed down from father to son. Son huasteco may be "traditional music," but it's as alive and popular as ever in the Huasteca.
Every Sunday, thousands of people come down from their villages in the mountains to dance to son huasteco in Xilitla, San Luis Potosi, Mexico (top photo). The recordings of legendary son huasteco musicians like Los Camperos de Valles (middle) inspire young musicians like Sergio Hernandez Reyes (bottom).
THE VIP PREMIERE & AFTERPARTY. You won't want to miss the VIP premiere and afterparty of A Mexican Sound (see $300 reward). It will take place (hopefully in November) at Pulqueria, a super stylish Mexican restaurant and bar located in New York City's Chinatown. Check out this photo of the Pulqueria bar...isn't that a cool space for an intimate premiere and after party? And then there's the private VIP booth at Pulqueria, where up to 2 backers (and their guests) will join me for dinner before the premiere.
HOW I WILL USE YOUR CONTRIBUTIONS. I've already filmed many of the interviews, performances, and beautiful nature scenes that you’ll see in the A Mexican Sound. But there is still more to do before the movie is finished, including additional filming, editing, audio mix, color correction, translation, subtitling, graphics, compensation to musicians, music licenses, and promotion. I can't finish the film without your support.
Me interviewing Elias Gonzalez Zamora, a lover of son huasteco who runs Xilitla's weekly son huasteco festival.
MORE INFORMATION. Learn more at www.amexicansound.com. If you have any questions, feel free to message me through Kickstarter or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Have a question? If the info above doesn't help, you can ask the project creator directly.
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CREW MEMBER: Your name listed in the “Thank You” section of the official website (sonhuasteco.com) + you will have access to my "backers only" Kickstarter updates, where I will ask for YOUR opinions on rough cuts and ideas we're floating for the film.Estimated delivery:
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CREW MEMBER-PLUS: Above + I’ll mail you the official A MEXICAN SOUND postcard. The postcard will have the film poster design (TBD) on the front side and a special acknowledgement to our Kickstarter backers on the back side.Estimated delivery:
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THE FILM: Above + an HD digital download of A MEXICAN SOUND. (Kickstarter backers will be the first people to own a copy of A MEXICAN SOUND, but the film may have to premiere at a few film festivals before we are allowed to release the digital download. Just FYI)Estimated delivery:
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LOS EXTRAS: Above + an HD digital download of live performances and interviews that were awesome but just didn’t fit into the final cut of A MEXICAN SOUND.Estimated delivery:
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'OTHER SIDE' SUPER FAN: I (director Roy Germano) will mail you an exclusive, limited edition THE OTHER SIDE OF IMMIGRATION postcard. On the back, I'll include a signed, handwritten note personally made out to you. Your postcard will be uniquely numbered out of 150. You’ll also receive rewards from the $10, $15, $20, and $30 levels.Estimated delivery:
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'MEXICAN SOUND' SUPER FAN: I (director Roy Germano) will mail you an exclusive, limited edition A MEXICAN SOUND postcard. On the back, I'll include a signed, handwritten note personally made out to you. Your postcard will be uniquely numbered out of 150. You’ll also receive rewards from the $10, $15, $20, and $30 levels.Estimated delivery:
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THANK YOU CREDIT: Your name listed in the “thank you” section of the end credits of A MEXICAN SOUND. You’ll also receive rewards from the $10, $15, $20, and $30 levels.Estimated delivery:
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SPECIAL THANKS CREDIT: Your name listed in the “special thanks” section of the end credits. Your name will be bigger and appear earlier than names in the “thank you” section. You'll also receive rewards from the $10, $15, $20, and $30 levels.Estimated delivery:
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SKYPE Q&A: I will mail you a DVD of my first documentary THE OTHER SIDE OF IMMIGRATION. You'll get some friends together to watch the movie. Then after the film, I (director Roy Germano) will join your group via Skype for a live video Q&A session lasting up to 30 minutes! I’ve done a lot of Q&As for this film, and I guarantee an informative and entertaining half hour. You'll also receive rewards from the $10, $15, $20, $30, and $100 levels.Estimated delivery:
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VIP PREMIERE/AFTER PARTY: You and a friend will be on the guest list for the exclusive VIP premiere of A MEXICAN SOUND. This private screening will be followed by a brief discussion/Q&A with director Roy Germano and, of course, an awesome after party. The event will take place at PULQUERIA, the coolest (Mexican) restaurant/bar in New York City (see photos to the left). What could be better than sipping pulque (an ancient Mexican drink) while you watch A MEXICAN SOUND and listen to Son Huasteco music?!? This screening/party will take place before any public screenings are held, so you’ll be the very first to see the movie! (expenses to NYC not included). You'll also receive rewards from the $10, $15, $20, $30, and $200 levels.Estimated delivery:
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LUNCH W/ THE DIRECTOR: Join me for lunch in Brooklyn (or possibly in another city when I'm on the road: http://bit.ly/9Igu4N). If outside NYC, message me before you pledge to confirm availability. Food/drink not included. You'll also receive rewards from the $10, $15, $20, $30, and $200 levels.Estimated delivery:
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EXECUTIVE PRODUCER: You will be listed as an executive producer in the opening credits of A MEXICAN SOUND. You and a friend will be on the guest list for the VIP premiere and after party at PULQUERIA (see the $300 reward above). You’ll also receive rewards from the $10, $15, $20, and $30 levels.Estimated delivery:
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VIP DINNER: You and a guest will join me—director Roy Germano—for a VIP dinner before the private premiere and after party at PULQUERIA (expenses to NYC not included; food/drink not included). You will be listed as an executive producer in the opening credits of A MEXICAN SOUND. You and your guest will be on the list for the VIP premiere and after party at PULQUERIA. You’ll also receive rewards from the $10, $15, $20, and $30 levels.Estimated delivery:
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SCREENING/Q&A: Roy Germano will fly to your town to present and discuss THE OTHER SIDE OF IMMIGRATION and/or give a speech about immigration issues at your event (flight, hotel, and other expenses not included). You’ll also receive rewards from the $10, $15, $20, $30, and $200 levelsEstimated delivery:
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PRODUCER: Your name in lights, at the very beginning of the credits. And if you’d like, let’s be in touch about having you join us in the Mexican countryside for filming and having some creative input along the way. I'll of course send you copies of the film+extras and lots of thanks on the website (unless you prefer otherwise). If you'd like to contribute more than $10k and have higher level of involvement, email me.Estimated delivery:
- (29 days)