Échale! 2014 draws a massive crowd for an afternoon of food, music and art. Photo by Nick Simonite.
Échale! 2014 draws a massive crowd for an afternoon of food, music and art. Photo by Nick Simonite.

One of San Antonio’s most popular music events returns to the Pearl this Memorial Day Monday, what promises to be a people-jammed block party with music, art and flavor. The event is hosted by Red Bull, Corona and Cadillac. Memorial Day isn’t the only day you can dance your holiday away: Échale! will be back on Labor Day, Sept. 7.

UPDATE: Due to inclement weather, Échale! has been postponed. Organizers are looking for a new date/time and we’ll update this story when more information becomes available.

The free event will take place in the Pearl parking lot under Highway 281 from 1-6 p.m. Free parking will be available on-site and at the Kohler garage. This is the first year Échale! will take place on Memorial Day.

“The community has spoken, and we are excited to bring back the popular Échale! Latin Music Estyles Block Party to Pearl,” said Elizabeth Fauerso, chief marketing officer at Pearl. “The music series has embodied the culture of the local community, and with the return of the event on Memorial Day and Labor Day, it will be a great time for family and fun.”

This is the second year Échale! will be in a block party format. More than 20 food and artisan vendors will be featured, including popular food truck Chela’s Tacos, the pop-up Knife and Fork, and Latina collective Mujeres Mercado.

The eclectic, art-rock lineup is a mixture of rising stars and established artists, including The Suffers, Los Crema Paraiso, Bombasta, DJ Orión and Chulita Vinyl Club.

The Suffers, a 10-piece Gulf Coast Soul band from Houston, are fresh off their acclaimed David Letterman performance. Led by the powerful voice of lead singer Kam Franklin, the group is a mix of classic soul and rock ‘n’ roll. Not only is their sound one of a kind, but they boast an emotional and thought provoking visual performance that is sure to entertain audiences of all taste levels and backgrounds.

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Los Crema Paraiso, a Venezuelan super group fronted by Los Amigos Invisibles founder Jose Luis Pardo, aka DJ Afro, draws their influences from jazz, Latin grooves, electronica, Pink Floyd and The Police. This trio enjoys bringing energy and a unique performance to make audiences move.

“We are all Venezuelans that grew up playing different kinds of music, but felt challenged to play with our roots and also wanted to bring something else to the way people sees music from our native country,” Pardo stated on the band’s website.

Fauerso is excited about the cutting edge music Paraiso will bring. “Los Crema Paradaiso are a cool new project, but they are really accessible for all music tastes. Young Latin music lovers will especially enjoy what they bring to this year’s event.”

Fauerso credits the success of the event to the dynamic music scene it features.

“The perimeters of the music for Échale! are really broad. We’re able to look into this creative development in Latin America and Mexico, and bring it to The Pearl for a unique experience. There’s so much richness to the music and culture; and because there’s not many music festivals or programs solely dedicated to this space, we have always had a great response to it. It’s free and the music is sometimes familiar but also flipped on its head,” she said.

As for Échale!’s future plans for 2016, Fauerso is optimistic for the opportunities with the addition of Hotel Emma in The Pearl. “As the concept evolves, we have thought about doing smaller events at Hotel Emma, and the amphitheater based on the Échale! program.”

For more information on the Échale! Block Party, please visit www.pearlechale.com and stay tuned for announcements and updates for the block party on Labor Day.

*Featured/top image: Échale! 2014 draws a massive crowd for an afternoon of food, music and art. Photo by Nick Simonite.

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Jackie Calvert

Jackie Calvert

Jackie Calvert is a freelance writer living in San Antonio. When she’s not writing, she’s tweeting or exploring the many facets of her city.