Don’t miss Warner Brothers recording artists The Last Bandoleros if they come to your town. People Magazine called them artists to watch in 2017 and Rolling Stone has hailed them as, 'the next generation of Tex-Mex renegades.' Guitarist Jerry Fuentes produced the band’s debut EP and their new single, "River Man" is out now. The Last Bandoleros just finished a tour of Euorpe and South America with legend Sting and will make their debut at the Grand Ole Opry shortly after they set fire to the stage of the Basement East for their Americana '17 Showcase.
We met Jerry along with Diego Navaira (bass & vocals) and Derek James (guitar & vocals) at the Epiphone/Gibson Showroom as the fellows traded Masterbilts in the process of a sometimes comical exchange, trying to match each Last Bandoleros member with the right guitar. Somehow, only Jerry walked out with a Masterbilt De Luxe Classic.
Diego, You've been playing with the Jack Casady Signature Bass lately. What do you think?
: I love the Jack Casady. It’s fantastic. There's nothing that can really touch it.
Where is the band from?
We just recently located here but for the past two years we’ve been saying we’re from San Antonio, Texas and New York. Me and my brother Emilio--who plays drums--are from San Antonio. Now we’re all in Nashville. I don’t know where to say we’re from!
I guess the biggest factor in moving here is our record label, Warner Brothers, is based here so. Warner has been an amazing label for us--like family--it makes sense for us to be close to them. Now that we can be in one city it makes things easier for us. A good hub for touring, too.
: We just realeased a new single, "River Man." We released an EP earlier this year—our debut—and we finished an album. Right now, it looks like we’re going to be releasing singles for awhile eventually leading to releasing the full album.
Compared to Texas and New York, how does Nashville compare? Have you been made to feel welcome?
This city is great. We spent a great deal of time over the past two years coming here and working so we already got a good sense of it. We got really comfortable here really fast. We love it! Our first headlining show was at the Basement and we’re doing Basement East for our Americana showcase.
Did the unique blend you have as a band come easily to you?
: Pretty much. When this project started, we weren’t trying to do something specifically. It actually started as a songwriting project and after we wrote about 5 great songs together we thought: ok, this needs to be a band! The sound came naturally.
That’s the beautiful part when you have four writers. Individually, we’ve been doing this all for a long time. When you start swapping ideas, it’s only a matter of time before everyone’s influences come to the table. And being from Texas, we had this tinge of Tex Mex—Doug Sahm—those influences seep in.
Before you go back on the raod, what's next?
We do our Opry debut on September 15
after our showcase. But we're staying busy. I don’t even know what day it is!