Best known for his country singing in the 70’s and his American Tejano sound of the 90’s, it would have come as no surprise that Freddie Fender began his career as a rock and roll/rockabilly/ranchera cross-over musician. Born Baldemar Garza Huerta in San Benito, Texas – Fender, who legally changed his name in 1958, would first find fame in that era covering a Spanish version of Elvis Presley’s “Don’t Be Cruel”. However, stardom was cut short in the early 60’s due to a marijuana possession arrest, something which he wouldn’t emerge/recover from for several years later.
I’m thinking that the 45’s in this post come right at a time prior to his incarceration. Nevertheless, the same kind of musical fusion, like that of the country/rock/tejano music he was popular for in the late period of his life, is apparent throughout these tracks. A mix of rock, calypso, to an old school Mexican party standard with “La Banda Esta Borracha” (the band is drunk) is a reflection of varying genres he was able to perform. Even his distinctive voice and dark emotional ballad like Que Tal Amor (how are you my love) reminded me instantly of Roy Orbison, another cross-over Texas native. Anyway, some super rare tejano roots music from the legend Freddie Fender. Be sure to check out an older post of a rare boogaloo number he did, still one of my favorite guest post/songs on this site. Enjoy!