Joel Guzman has been called brilliant, extraordinary, a genius. He began dazzling audiences and fellow musicians with his unique accordion artistry as a child prodigy, causing established and respected accordion players to christen him, at an early age, “El Pequeno Gigante”. The Little Giant. Today, he is not only a superbly accomplished instrumentalist, singer, and performer, he is also a successful as an innovator, arranger and producer. He and his band “Aztex” formed the nucleus and inspiration for RCA’s release of Los Super Seven, featuring Joe Ely, Freddy Fender, Flaco Jimenez, Ruben Ramos, Rick Trevino and David Hidalgo and Cesar Rosas both of Los Lobos. The countless other artists with whom Guzman has collaborated reads like a Who’s Who of Texas Music. In spite of his award-winning success, Guzman is restless. With his roots firmly planted in the full range of traditional Mexican music, he has incorporated and experimented with jazz, tejano, country, salsa, R&B and rock. His passionate drive to create new musical directions and imaginative combinations of all these genres, continues to place him in a category all his own. He has said, “I may play a box but don’t want to be put in one”. The formation of The Mexican Roots Trio is his latest move to push the envelope, to venture out into new and exciting areas of expression. The Mexican Roots experience comes with the phenomenal vocal power of soul mate and partner Sarah Fox along with longtime friend and world class bajista, Max Baca Jr.. Together, this family reflects the inclination to create fresh, daring musical blends and to perform them with playful strut and bravado. For much of his career, Guzman has generously contributed to the musical efforts of his countless fellow-musicians and colleagues. Now he feels it’s time to fully develop his own personal eclectic perceptions and ideas, step to the front of the stage, and present audiences with something far beyond tired formulas and safe homogenous sounds. He believes music should be created and performed with energy, sensitivity, honesty and above all, fearlessness. A growing number of people of all ages, from different cultures and backgrounds, are forming an audience ready to discover where this journey will take them and what new gifts the melding of Guzmans’ musical styles will offer.
Sarah Fox is a singer-songwriter and co-founder of Guzman Fox Creative, Inc. and Guzman Fox Music Publishing. She began her singing career in Temple, Texas, and was performing at the age of 16 at local dances with long time family friends, Little Joe y La Familia. Her early training focused on the rigors of studio work, which developed a level of discipline and professionalism that serves her well today. The level of her talent is primarily the result of simply doing things, such as: regularly performing background vocals for a variety of major artists including a recent duet with Joe Ely on Los Super Seven’s album, continuing with her studio work in radio and TV commercials, and constantly singing and performing in a variety of styles. After the completion of the Super Seven CD (Grammy 1999), she, along with her partners, Joel Guzman and Max Baca toured Los Angeles (House of Blues), New Orleans (House of Blues) and New York (The Bowery), as well as appearing on The Conan O’Brian show. As a songwriter, her compositions are featured on “Deep in the Heart” and on the award winning documentary “Split Decision”, produced by independent film producer Marcy Garriott. To date, Fox is penning songs for the next “Aztex” recording project, which will begin production February 2003. During her professional career, Sarah toured extensively throughout the Midwest and West Coast with the Pop/Funk group “Motion”. In 1983, she recorded her first single, “You let me down”, featuring saxophonist Kirk Whalum. From 1985 to 1988 she co-directed the Brazilian and Jazz group “Human Touch”, and from 1993 to 1996 she co-founded the Salsa Group “Trocadero” a big, splashy salsa band to showcase Fox’s special interest and skill in singing the demanding Caribbean rhythms and Latin jazz. Fox comes to this point naturally, with a Cuban grandmother and a father who incessantly played his favorite Cuban records in their home. Fox is a critical component in the ultimate direction “Aztex” and the “Mexican Roots Trio” will take. Her diverse background and experiences will unquestionably be heard in the richness of the final mix.
Los Aztex (Latino Americano)
Featuring vocalist Sarah Fox, accordionist Joel Guzman and backed by a four piece rhythm section that features music veteran guitartist Russell Scanlon, bassist Glenn Fukunaga, drummer Michael Hale and Percussion and Coro singer Angel Santos Jr.
Los Aztex is a group in the new breed of Latin bands who draw influences from roots music all around the globe. Although intimate with the Tejano / Conjunto styles of South Texas, Los Aztex also take in traditions from Panama, Puerto Rico, Cuba
and beyond. The resulting bilingual blend is an absolutely unique across the border sound bathed in romance, heartbreak and protest. Sarah Fox uses her versatile and expressive voice like a jazz singer; twisting melody and time with grace and
surprise. Guzman and band keep the unusual Latino and American synthesis seamless.