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Las Cafeteras in Concert Presented by TD SUNFEST in partnership with the Wolf Performance Hall


Las Cafeteras live at the Wolf

About this event

Las Cafeteras fuse Afro-Mexican (son jarocho), hip hop, folk, native American & more styles. They use their performances to inspire social change.


Advanced: $28 + fees

At the Door: $33 + fees

Las Cafeteras are storytellers, cultural ambassadors and above all musicians translating often-political themes into music that blends traditional Mexican folk tunes with the beat of the East Los Angeles streets. The L.A. Times describes their sound as a “uniquely Angeleno mishmash of punk, hip-hop, beat music, cumbia and rock … Live, they’re magnetic.” (And if you saw them at TD Sunfest ’18, then you’ll know how true this is!)

The members of Las Cafeteras are all children of immigrants who first met as community organizers and later (2008) decided to form a band to document the histories of their neighborhoods through music. As musicians, they started as students of the Eastside Café, a Zapatista inspired community space in East Los Angeles where they were influenced by the culture, storytelling and poetry of Son Jarocho, a traditional music from Veracruz, Mexico.

Using traditional Son Jarocho instruments like the jarana, requinto, quijada (donkey jawbone) and tarima (a wooden platform), Las Cafeteras sing in English, Spanish and Spanglish. They use their music as a vehicle to build bridges among different cultures and communities, and to create “a world where many worlds fit”.

The success of Las Cafeteras’ first studio album, It’s Time (2012), launched the band to new heights, placing them on stages with Mexican icons like Café Tacuba and Lila Downs. They’ve since toured from Lincoln Center in New York to the WOMAD Festival in the UK.

The group’s next album, Tastes Like L.A. (2017), delivered a more eclectic sound that combined traditional rhythms with rock, hip-hop and other contemporary genres.

While previous works range from traditional to fusion to political, their upcoming EP might be more romantic.

“Now, our music is so much about love and so much about joy,” says vocalist/instrumentalist Denise Carlos. “We’re kind of playing around with this love song called ‘Thinking About You’ …

Last fall, when they kicked off a national tour at the Los Angeles Music Center, Las Cafeteras also performed “Oaxaca Love Song,” a new track that pays tribute to the ballad music their parents played at home during the band members’ childhood.



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