San Antonio singer-songwriter Liz Garcia released her second album, Una Estrella, just before Christmas at the end of the seemingly never-ending hellscape that was 2020. And honestly, I’ve been listening to it ever since. Una Estrella is a rhythmic collection of tunes that I really didn’t know I needed to have rolling around in my head.
Una Estrella includes seven original tunes written by Garcia, who is a songwriter registered with BMI. She’s on a roll too, considering that her debut, Habia Una Vez…, featured nine originals on the ten track album. This is no small feat and is an impressive accomplishment for someone who is still considered a new artist and, truthfully, doesn’t quite get the attention she deserves.
The variety of rhythms she’s using on this album is just as impressive. All too often in Tejano music, we’re given two speeds, ranchera and cumbia, and bands rarely venture any further than that. And while Garcia seems most at home with dreamy cumbias, on Una Estrella, she steps out of her comfort zone on original songs like the bolero “Se Esta Muriendo Mi Corazon,” the playful charanga “Ay Javier,” the rock en Español of “Cuanta Falta me Haces,” and fast-paced poppy two-step of “Vuela 15anera” (more on this one in a moment).
Garcia does justice to the covers on the album as well. The opening track, “Peligro de Extincion,” is a faster, upbeat cumbia arrangement of the much slower Banda tune by La Adictiva and the album’s sole ranchera, “Nunca Voy a Olvidarte,” was rearranged from the Cristian Castro pop en Español original. While she put her own spin on those two tracks, she remained faithful to the style of Ninel Conde’s hit, “Bombon Asesino.”
Another song that really stuck out for me was the final track, “Vuela 15anera,” written for one of Garcia’s fans as a gift to the fan’s granddaughter. As someone who has helped DJ my fair share of quinceañeras, I’m recommending that all DJs buy this track for any future quinceañera gigs you may have. Why? Because it’s specifically written as a sweet ode to a quinceañera on her special day from a parent who loves her and is wishing her well, and I struggle to think of any others that do that. Trust me, the families will thank you. The kids will like it too. It’s upbeat and pop-flavored, and positive and encouraging, but doesn’t make people cry because their girl is growing up.
And finally, Garcia wrote “Estrella Fugaz” for her fans. Anyone who has ever met Liz Garcia, worked with her, and paid any attention to her social media accounts knows that she loves to perform wherever and whenever she can (even if it’s just karaoke on her Facebook page) and she loves interacting with people. She is literally one of the sweetest people I’ve met in this business. She is humble and thankful for everyone who is helping her realize her dream, from fans to media to fellow musicians.
Like so many of us, Liz Garcia is a dreamer, and she is right in the middle of making that dream come true. With help from Tony Terrazas of Terra Music International in San Antonio and producer Roberto Arista Briones, she remains an independent artist who is unsigned to any label, but is driven to put her music out there. And with 16 original songs out of 20 on her first two albums, she has plenty to say and is only getting better with time.
Una Estrella is a great example of how Liz Garcia continues to grow and mature as an artist, vocalist and musician, and I can’t wait to see what she comes up with next.
Una Estrella is available for purchase and streaming on all digital platforms and on CD from Liz Garcia herself. Follow her on social media for updates.
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