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At Home with The House of Songs: Gina Chavez

Today, At Home with The House of Songs features Austin's Gina Chavez. Gina has been a longtime collaborator with The House of Songs, participating in our Songwriter Summits, cowriting with guest artists in residence, as well as being an artist in residence herself at The House of Songs Ozarks.

The release of LA QUE MANDA marks Gina's first all-Spanish language album, and is available at We encourage you to follow and support Gina, all of our fellow musicians in this uncertain time by making donations to artists or purchasing music and/or merchandise.

Award-winning Austin singer/songwriter Gina Chavez is back with her sophomore studio album, Up.Rooted, released February 2014. Up.Rooted was produced by MichaelRamos, best known for his work with Patty Griffin and John Mellencamp. The album spans 11 diverse pan-Latin songs featuring Adrian Quesada, the Tosca String Quartet, the Grupo Fantasma horn section, David Pulkingham and Glenn Fukunaga, to name a few of the Austin all-star players.

Chavez has received national recognition from NPR’s “All Songs Considered” and “Alt.Latino” for her debut SXSW performance (2012) as one of the new Latin artists to watch, and the Austin American-Statesman calls her “a true Austin music treasure — angelic vocals and a devilish treat on guitar.” The accolades don’t end there as she won Austin Music Awards for two years running, including three Austin Music Awards in 2013-2014 for “Best Female Vocals, Best Latin Traditional, and Best Latin Rock,” while Southern Living Magazine named her one of 11 “southern iconic women who have left a beautiful footprint across the South,” for her volunteer work in El Salvador.

“This album is a rhythmic exploration of who I am,” says Chavez. “A sonic garden of stories from an ethically mixed woman on a journey to uncover her lost Latin roots.” Chavez, whose parents are of Mexican and Swiss-German descent, was raised on Lyle Lovett, Little Richard and Michael Jackson. Her lifelong musical journey was inspired at Austin’s famed Continental Club and led to a semester in Buenos Aires, Argentina, all the way to community work in El Salvador in one of the roughest neighborhoods. The result is a passionate album traversing cumbia, bossa nova, vintage pop, reggaeton, and folk combined with her dynamic vocals and sharp social commentary.

Her new album showcased at a sold-out hometown record release party on February 15, 2014 at The Stateside Theater in Austin, TX. The event was a fundraiser for Niña Arriba, a college fund co-founded with her partner Jodi Granado in 2010. The fund offers full scholarships to a private, Catholic university for girls they lived with in Soyapango.

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