November 28, 2014, by Matt

Music – bringing people together

Geography alumnus John Pearson, now of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, returns to the Geog Blog with a final report from his posting to Mexico. John will return to the Geog Blog in the new year and let us know how he’s settling back into life in the UK and his new role at the FCO…


Many things come to my mind about the relationship between the UK and Mexico: but probably the one that connects us the most is, and will always be, music.

British music is incredibly popular in Mexico. To give you an idea, there is a Mexican radio station called ‘Universal’ that plays two hours of Beatles music – every day – from Monday to Friday.

There is also a special “British Hour” every Saturday on “Toño Esquinca y la Muchedumbre”, one of Mexico’s most popular radio shows. The Embassy has an excellent relationship with the DJ and we frequently take part to promote our work and activities – recently, I had the chance of participating (and choosing some songs by the Kinks, David Bowie and the Smiths)!

Last year we arranged a concert by the popular band “Jenny and the Mexicats” during the “Festival of Cultures” in Mexico City. As the name suggests, Jenny is British, while the rest of her band is Mexican. Before the concert, the band took a ride on a GREAT branded double decker bus with our former Ambassador Judith Macgregor. While this year’s “Festival of Cultures” included a private concert by the Mexican jazz band Troker, who then travelled to perform at Glastonbury.

Jenny and the Mexicats
“Jenny and the Mexicats”, a British-Mexican band that represented the UK at Mexico’s “Festival of Cultures”.

This October, as part of our next GREAT Week, the Embassy in Mexico City hosted a music trade mission, in collaboration with industry experts. This allowed companies to meet potential partners and key industry stakeholders, as well as attending the Corona Capital Music Festival.

Corona Capital is Mexico’s leading arts and music festival, offering a combination of world-class international artists and a prime location in the heart of Mexico City. Many British bands – including Massive Attack, The Kooks, Kasabian, and Metronomy, among others – played  at the Festival this year. It was a great way to promote British music. And in UKTI Mexico we could draw on the resources of our own resident rock star, Francisco Ponce (who plays locally with three bands, and once opened for AC/DC!).

Troker at Glastonbury
Mexican jazz band Troker playing at Glastonbury Music Festival.

Music has been one of the highlights of my time in Mexico – there is certainly more to the local scene than “Going Loco Down In Acapulco”! And it offers an excellent stage for UK-Mexico co-operation.




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