2004 - Although she was born
in California a scant sixteen years ago (she is now 19), Nydia Rojas
carries the music of her ancestral Mexico deep within her.
Nydia sings in styles ranging
from mariachi to jazz to pop, but her love of music can be traced
back to a film she saw as a four-year-old: Nosotros Los Pobres,
starring Pedro Infante. Entranced by images on the screen, she
learned all the lyrics to "Amorcito Corazon," the film's theme song.
At the time she was living in
Guadalajara, where her parents had moved when Nydia was a year old.
By the time she returned to the States, Nydia had already developed
an enduring taste of ranchera, mariachi, and other types of folk
music indigenous to northern Mexico, Frequent visits to Mexico
nurtured her desire to become a mariachi singer.
But it was in the restaurants
of East Los Angeles where Nydia first began her career. At age nine
she convinced mariachi groups performing at a popular area
restaurant to let her accompany them. She became such a sensation
among the patrons-who tipped her generously-that the establishment
promptly hired her to sing on a professional basis. Nydia's
popularity quickly spread soon after, and she became a regular
performer at several local restaurants.
At 16. Nydia is the first
female artist signed to the Arista/Latin label, and is making an
international debut that fulfills her lifelong dream.
Nydia makes her debut with
Nydia Rojas, an album produced end arranged by Jose Hernandez,
musical director for Mariachi Sol de Mexico. The album writes a new
chapter for mariachi music, displaying its diversity from
traditional delivery to contemporary, radio-oriented hits. The
project includes a song written by Nydia and gives mariachi music a
fresh outlook through its ballads, cumbias. rancheras and sones.
"When I discovered the
mariachi. Nydia explains, "I discovered everything-I felt complete."
It is this discovery and profound love for the music of her adopted
country that she wants to share with audiences of all ages. With
each performance, her greatest desire is to express her feelings of
"what it is to be Mexican," and for everyone to feel "proud of who
they are," regardless of their ethnicity.
Nydia has assimilated
mariachi into her own distinct musical personality. She has studied
with Heriberto Molina ("El Cura"), one of the original members of
the great Mariachi Verges de Tecalitlen, and participated in the
Mariachi Heritage Society Program at the Los Angeles Music end Art
School. Tutored by Jose Hernandez. The program's founder as well as
musical director of Mariachi Sol de Mexico. Nydia fine4uned her
artistry to become the primary vocalist and musician with all-female
Mariachi Reyna de Los Angeles.
In addition to singing. Nydia
also reads and writes music, and is adept on the guitar, the violin
and the vihuela (an instrument used in mariachi music), and she has
studied acting, modern dance and Folklorico dance.
Although her accomplishments
and aspirations may seem overwhelming for such a young woman.
Nydia's age is belied by her powerful voice, her maturity and her
level of professional expertise.
Nydia has performed as a
soloist and as a member of the Mariachi Reyna at the internationally
renown Mariachi USA Festival for the past four years, and has taken
her music to major stages in United States, Puerto Rico and Mexico.
In 1993 she won first place three consecutive times in a global
talent contest on Sabado Gigante. The popular variety show broadcast
on Univision's worldwide Spanish-language network. Nydia has also
recorded movie soundtracks and commercials. most recently recording
the Spanish theme song for Don Juan de Marco. A film starring Marion
Brando and Johnny Depp.
"With music. my goal is not
to be famous but to stay true to my roots. My music is my
responsibility to share the richness of the Latin culture with both
new and old audiences. I am deeply moved when I see during a
performance that my singing has made someone cry. Nostalgia for the
Mexico they left long ago overcomes them. I pray my music will
always take them back."