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Arts & Culture

Santiago Jiménez, Jr. to put the squeeze on at the Lonesome Rose

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Oscar Moreno
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Santiago Jiménez, Jr., with Garrett T. Capps at right

Two popular San Antonio musicians have partnered up on a new album.

“I am Garrett T. Capps,” the local bar owner and musician said.

Capps owns the Lonesome Rose bar and music venue, and is a touring musician. But the pandemic put the brakes on touring for a while. While looking around for projects, he had an idea.

“In 2020 in all of the downtime I kind of stretched and asked my friend Santiago Jiménez, Jr., the legendary San Antonio conjunto accordion player, if I could help him make an album,” Capps said.

Santiago is one of three well-known Jiménez family members. There’s his brother Flaco, and there’s his legendary father.

Santiago Jimenez, Jr.
Oscar Moreno
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Santiago Jiménez, Jr.

“His father, Don Santiago, Jiménez — he was the first guy to introduce the tololoche to conjunto music, which was the upright bass,” he said.

The norms of conjunto included accordion and bajo sexto. The tololoche was a new twist. As to son Santiago, his accomplishments too, are many. In 2015 he was awarded a National Medal of the Arts.
“Santiago has been nominated for three Grammys. He's traveled the world,” Capps said. “And he's really charismatic and (a) really in-shape performer. He's 78 years old.”

They named the album Santiago Jiménez Still Kicking — a nod to that long life of success — and brought other Grammy winners into the group to make the record.

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“We asked Max Baca and Noel Hernandez from the Texmaniacs to complete the band. It's just a trio,” he said. “Max and Noel are the best in the business. And they would look at the lyrics, go over a few things, (then) cut the whole thing live, usually in one take.”

Still Kicking is available in both vinyl and CD. Both will be available at the release party on Friday night, a night wherein both Jiménez and Capps will perform.

“We are having a record release party. May 20 at the Lonesome Rose. It's going to be Santiago Jimenez at 9 (p.m.). Jesse Dayton is going to join him for a few songs,” he said. “And then my band is going to play. It's also our European tour kickoff. We leave that Sunday, so it's going to be a party.”

If you can’t make the release party, Still Kicking is available at the Hard Charger Records website.  

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OSCAR MORENO
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Santiago Jiménez Jr. with his band at the Lonesome Rose
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