Gringos gear up for return with expanded repertoire

The Terrace campus of Northwest Community College will once again heat up with Los Gringos Salvajes, a 10-piece band from Smithers, this Friday night (Feb. 16).
“We’re stoked about being asked back to the Kiva Club, for the third time in a year,” said Larissa Ardis, the band’s accordionist. “It seems we have a solid core of fans in the Terrace area.”
Los Gringos Salvajes (translation: Wild Gringos, pronounced Lohs GRINGoes Sahl-VAH-haze) are based in Smithers, but the band’s sultry sound is rooted in the contemporary tango bars of Buenos Aires. That’s where the band’s lead songwriter, guitarist and vocalist Facundo Gastiazoro cut his musical teeth, achieving recognition in Argentina’s indie music scene before immigrating to Canada in 2002.
When Gastiazoro landed in Smithers, he discovered a town known for its high concentration and diversity of accomplished musicians. He founded Los Gringos Salvajes, a band whose original music irreverently fuses traditional Latin music forms such as milonga, bolero and waltzes with styles like jazz, swing and punk. Its moody, wide-ranging sound is characterized by dynamic percussion, the twang of electric guitar, juicy double bass, a fat horn section, subtly haunting accordion and the spare, retro touch of the vibraphones.
“Our Terrace audience will be glad to know that we’re celebrating the release of our new full-length CD, Seis Mil Semillas de Manzana, adds Ardis. It’s already attracting airplay, including CBC Radio programs All Points West, Daybreak North and BC Almanac.
Expect them to play selections –sung mostly by Gastiazoro, in Spanish – from the new CD at the Kiva.
You’ll hear Milonga, which offers a glimpse into the world of a late-shift cab driver, ferrying the night creatures of sprawling Buenos Aires.
Listen for Galvan, a tribute to Facundo’s father, who risked his life editing an underground newspaper during the dictatorship that brutalized Argentina from 1976-1983. The song acknowledges the irony that Galvan’s chosen means of resistance – a typewriter – is manufactured by the same company that makes guns used to silence dissidents like Galvan. Nicole L’Orsa may also attend, lending her captivating voice to songs like Gulab Jamun, a sensuous interpretation of the latent passion in Indian sweets.
The band has been picked up by a record label in Argentina and is tentatively planning a tour there next January.
Los Gringos Salvajes will also be the main act at Valentino’s, a two-night Smithers music event that takes place annually in February. “It’s arguably the hottest regional music ticket in Smithers, typically selling out weeks in advance – and this year is no exception,” notes Ardis.
For a sneak preview of Los Gringos Salvajes’s sound and new CD, visit
See show details on page B2.