Ginger Coyote speaks with
of San Antonio's PINATA PROTEST
By: Ginger Coyote
I got a chance to ask Alvaro Del Norte who is the vocalist and accordion player for the San Antonio Texas based band Pinata Protest. I recently got their new CD on Saustex Records and was very impressed so I contacted Jeff Smith about setting up an interview... I hope you enjoy......
Punk Globe: Thanks so much for the interview.. I am very impressed by the amount of hits that your CD has gotten. Can you give us a run down of who is in the band and what they play?
Alvaro: Alvaro Del Norte does vocals, accordion & trumpet, JJ Martinez does drums & vocals, Marcus Cazares is on bass, & Matt Cazares plays guitar.
Punk Globe: Is the band centered in San Antonio Texas?
Alvaro: Si. We are indeed from San Antonio (a.ka. San Quilmas, San Anto, Taco Town, & Satantonio).
Punk Globe: How would you best to describe your music?
Alvaro: We like to say its accordion powered punk rock, but our music has been described as conjunto-punk, punk-rock-y-roll, and the Mexican Dropkick Murphys.
Punk Globe: How did you hook up with Jeff and Saustex Records?
Alvaro: Jeff, owner of Saustex Records, approached us at one of our shows and offered us a drink and a record deal. The chance to be signed to the Saustex label only sweetened the offer.
Punk Globe: Has the reviews of your CD all been really favorable?
Alvaro: Surprisingly yes. It's nice to hear people are liking what we do, and we hope those same people will enjoy our live show even more when we get on the road. We're a very fun live band.
Punk Globe: Has the Band toured alot?
Alvaro: Not at all. To our name, we've played only in Texas but once did venture out to Chicago for Latino Fest, but that was a one stop ordeal.
Punk Globe: Can you tell us about any other releases you may have out?
Alvaro: We also have a self-titled EP that we released a couple of years ago. We recorded that with a friend who recorded local punk and hardcore bands at his home. That album included our original line-up and a sound which has now gotten much more aggressive with the new members.
Punk Globe: Do you play in Mexico? If so what has the reaction been?
Alvaro: No, but we've played very close though ( a mile or so from the border). Ha! We would love to though; shows in Mexico are always amazing.
Punk Globe: Are you a fan of Weird Al Yankovich and Judy Tenuta?
Alvaro: Love Weird Al!...and just looked up Judy Tenuta because of this question...She has a new fan.
Punk Globe: Are you familiar with the San Francisco band Those Darn Accordion's?
Alvaro: We are! We saw them play at the San Antonio International Accordion Festival a couple years ago. Amazing band.
Punk Globe: Who are your influences musically?
Alvaro: We have wide variety of influences, but the most direct influences on our sound up to now have been bands like The Texas Tornadoes, The Ramones, The Dwarves, Rise Against, Los Tigres, Del Norte, Nirvana, The Pogues and Los Crudos.
Punk Globe: How do you go about choosing the songs you wanna cover?
Alvaro: We've covered "Jesus Don't Want Me for a Sunbeam", "Paisano a Paisano", and "The Blitzkrieg Bop". We chose them because of their simplicity, their popularity, and of course because they are great songs.
Punk Globe: Who writes the music and lyrics for the band or is it a group effort?
Alvaro: Both. Alvaro is the main song writer, but as a group, we give each song its final sound from individual influences. As far as lyrics, Alvaro handles that.
Punk Globe: Can you give us your web addresses for the band so people can check you out?
Alvaro: A band website is in the works, but we can be found at
Punk Globe: Have you ever thought about covering "They Tried To Make Me Go To Rehab"?
Alvaro: No.
Punk Globe: If you could play a show with any person or band who would it be with and at what venue?
Alvaro: For kicks, we would play with Will Ferrell in his Blue Oyster Cult character. Our songs can always use more cowbell.
Punk Globe: Any big tours or recording projects in 2010?
Alvaro: As far as touring, we plan on hitting up the L.A. area in mid August. We also are planning on releasing a vinyl split with our friends Viet-Ruse.
Punk Globe: Any thoughts on the boycott against the State of Arizona?
Alvaro: We support the boycott against Arizona. We find what's going on in Arizona (including what its education department is doing) disgusting. The Arizona law (while not racist in itself) has a lot of inherit racist baggage. The Arizona law is an attempt to treat the symptoms and Hispanics will be the ones left feeling the negative side effects. The relationship between Mexico and the USA economically, politically, and socially is a very old and complex one. This new law will not solve anything and will only make life worse for one particular group. This law represents a continuation of laws that supported things such as segregation, women's inability to vote, and slavery which scapegoated, exploited, and did awful things to select populations.
Punk Globe: Any last words for Punk Globe readers?
Alvaro: If you're ever in our city make sure to check out Lermas and Rey's Drive-Inn. Puro San Anto.
Please Check out Pinata Protest they will put a huge smile on your face and you will become a fan immediately........ Thank you Alvaro