For Episode 4 of The Solar Cabin Sessions, my guest is El Gringo Mariachi. You many have seen his other name in the credits of The Solar Cabin Sessions. Sometimes, El Gringo Mariachi goes by Joshua James Huff and he's the director and editor of The Solar Cabin Sessions. About twenty years ago, I was toiling away in a musty, egg-shell crated little recording studio in Southwest Portland, called Studio 13, doing records for The Exploding Hearts, Pat MacDonald and The Nice Boys. One day, in 1999, Joshua James Huff of Joshua James and The Runaway Trains came through my door to put some songs down on tape. On that day, if you told either one of us that two decades down the road we would be collaborating on a recording and video web series set at the remote cabin where I would be living in the Mojave Desert... well, we wouldn't have believed you.
In the last two decades, Joshua covered a lot of miles becoming fluent in Spanish by immersing himself in Mexico for months at a time, riding his motorcycle all the way from Portland, Oregon, to Guadalajara, Mexico. All the while, Joshua James Huff never set the guitar and songwriting pen down. A few years ago, as artists will do, he went through a transformation which was sparked by his travels. While struggling to define the very person that he is - juggling his Mexican heritage here in America with the motorcycle forays into Mexico where he was regularly pointed out as "el gringo" by the locals - Joshua began making tips by playing traditional songs as well as rock and roll in bars in Guadalajara.
Upon returning to Portland, his new persona emerged, El Gringo Mariachi. Joshua came into PermaPress Recording with a cracking band featuring Greg Odell on drums, Freddy Trujillo on bass, James Sasser on guitar, Mark Breitenbach on keys, Paul Brainard on trumpet and I even get in some harmonica and lead guitar on a few tunes. We cut a ten song album which will be out this Fall of 2019.
El Gringo Mariachi brings his mariachi style three piece to the Solar Powered Cabin. James Sasser is on electric guitar and Balin Strand is on acoustic.