Squeezebox Stories: Rural music, immigration, and the accordion in California's Central Valley
When Carlos Mendoza immigrated to California from Oaxaca in the 1980s to work in the fields outside Madera, he brought his beloved Chilena music along with him. Now a full-time musician, Mendoza will play some of these traditional Oaxacan songs and talk with producers Julie Caine and Marié Abe about the role the accordion has played in carrying culture to a new land.
Squeezebox Stories is an award-winning public radio documentary that uses the rich history of the accordion to tell immigration and migration stories to California. Produced by radio journalist Julie Caine and Boston University ethnomusicologist Marié Abe, this project is supported by the California Council for the Humanities and the Arhoolie Foundation.
During this event, we'll hear the story of some of rural California's newest residents, and learn how their journey north has given new life to traditional music that embodies cultural pride in a new land. The most recent wave of Mexican immigrants to California are mostly indigenous people from the southern Mexican state of Oaxaca–many of whom don’t even speak Spanish as their first language, and who are often discriminated against within mainstream Mexican culture for their indigenous heritage. We hope you can join us for this special event. Light refreshments will be served. Please RSVP.
When & Where
California Historical Society
Our mission is to inspire and empower Californians to make the past a meaningful part of their contemporary lives.
The California Historical Society holds one of the richest collections of primary and secondary materials in the state on the social, cultural, economic, and political development of California.
The Gallery provides public access to the collection through changing exhibitions, Tuesday through Sunday, 11:00 to 5:00 p.m.
The North Baker Research Library provides public access to the collection, Wednesday through Friday, 12:00 to 5:00 p.m.