I’ve been to about every music festival you can think of, from Coachella to Bonnaroo, and none of them compare to Ruido Fest. While every other music festival in the country is probably a lot more successful than Ruido Fest — which just wrapped up its third year this past weekend in Chicago — none of them serve the Latino community. It’s extremely rare to find Latino musical artists at festivals, that’s just a fact. We’re lucky if they have one Latino band, let alone two. That’s why I truly fell in love with Rudio Fest, it’s completely inclusive of the Latino community.
This festival, for me, felt as if I had come home. Like everything that I’ve ever known from my childhood, from my family, from my days traveling around Mexico, were all in this one place. Everything that encompasses the Latino culture was here! Even though I knew that I was coming to a festival for Latin alternative music, I had no idea how it would feel to be surrounded by brown people, that looked just like me, at a music festival.
Everywhere I’d turn I was blown away by how my senses were overtaken by familial things such as the food (tacos, flautas, aguas frescas), to the Mexican art, fashion, and of course the music. There was also weird, unexpected stuff, like the lucha libre wrestling match, and even some Trump controversy. It was intense, and I loved every second of it.
The best part about all of this drunken craziness, indulgence of delicious foods, and moshing in the pit, is that everyone expressed such deep love for each other. It’s as if we were all related. That might sound bizarre to some, but to Latinos, it’s not. Because it’s so rare that we have a place where we can come together and rejoice in our culture, the unity of this experience bonds us, it just does.
While I did come to enjoy Nacotheque, Julieta Venegas, and Fobia — the musical aspect of Ruido fest is just one component. The real love affair that I now have for this festival is with the people basking in their culture.
See you next year, Ruido Fest!