Felix Contreras

Felix Contreras is co-host of Alt.Latino, NPR's web-based program about Latin Alternative music and Latino culture. It features music as well as interviews with many of the most well-known Latino musicians, actors, film makers and writers.

Previously, Contreras was a producer and reporter for NPR's Arts Desk and covered, among other stories and projects: a series reported from Mexico introducing the then-new musical movement called Latin Alternative; a series of stories on the financial challenges facing aging jazz musicians; and helped produce NPR's award winning series 50 Great Voices.

He once stood on the stage of the legendary jazz club The Village Vanguard after interviewing the club's owner and swears he felt the spirits of Coltrane and Monk walking through the room.

Contreras is a recovering television journalist who has worked for both NBC and Univision. He's also a part-time musician who plays Afro-Cuban percussion with various jazz and Latin bands.

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Alt.Latino
10:23 am
Thu January 17, 2013

Mad Musical Scientists: Latin Musicians Who Dare To Experiment

Sandra Velasquez's new album is titled Dig Deeper.
Shirley Rodriguez Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Mon June 17, 2013 11:20 am

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Alt.Latino
11:45 am
Thu January 10, 2013

This Week On Alt.Latino: Guest DJ Sandra Cisneros

Author Sandra Cisneros.
Jessica Fuentes Jessica Fuentes

Originally published on Mon June 17, 2013 11:04 am

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Best Music Of 2012
10:03 am
Sat December 22, 2012

Staff Picks: Our Favorite Music Books Of 2012

Nishant Choksi

Originally published on Mon December 24, 2012 11:55 am

In 2012, writers who tackled musical topics dove deep, got weird, burrowed into a niche; we joyfully followed them to depths we never would have expected when the year began. We devoured works of criticism, history, biography and the Zen of John Cage and Tony Bennett.

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Alt.Latino
10:58 am
Thu December 6, 2012

How The Wolf Survived: 40 Years Of Los Lobos

Los Lobos.
Drew Reynolds

Originally published on Mon June 17, 2013 11:21 am

  • Hear Los Lobos Play Guest DJ

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The Record
2:52 pm
Fri November 16, 2012

Jesse & Joy, Juanes Win Big At Latin Grammys

Jesse & Joy accept one of their four awards during the Latin Grammy Awards in Las Vegas on Thursday.
Robyn Beck AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri November 16, 2012 4:31 pm

Click the audio link to hear Alt.Latino's Felix Contreras and Jasmine Garsd discuss the Latin Grammy Awards with Tell Me More's Michel Martin.

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Alt.Latino
12:32 pm
Thu November 15, 2012

Cuban Sounds: From Mambo To Pop, And Back Again

Alex Cuba.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Mon June 17, 2013 11:24 am

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Tiny Desk Concerts
2:03 pm
Mon November 12, 2012

Flaco Jimenez: Tiny Desk Concert

Flaco Jimenez and Max Baca play a Tiny Desk Concert on Oct. 3.
Lauren Rock NPR

Watching Flaco Jimenez play his button accordion is like looking back in time. His grandfather started playing an accordion in cantinas and family parties along the Texas/Mexican border around the late 1800s. Then Flaco's dad, Santiago Jimenez Sr., carried on the family tradition when he released his first record in 1936.

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Alt.Latino
10:30 am
Thu September 27, 2012

Love And Rockets (And Music): Comic-Book Pioneers Gil & Jaime Hernandez

Love and Rockets
Gilbert and Jaime Hernandez Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Thu September 27, 2012 11:20 pm

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Tiny Desk Concerts
5:20 pm
Mon September 24, 2012

Yva Las Vegass: Tiny Desk Concert

Yva Las Vegas plays a Tiny Desk Concert at the NPR Music offices.
Lauren Rock NPR

At NPR Music, we get stacks of CDs in the mail, as well as countless links to music streams, from bands trying to stand out and get some attention. It's safe to say that we all share similar previewing procedures: At some point, we just sit and listen.

What are we listening for? I can't speak for the others, but I'm constantly in search of music I haven't heard, but which sounds as if it's been in my life forever.

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Tiny Desk Concerts
10:38 am
Mon August 27, 2012

Renaud Garcia-Fons: Tiny Desk Concert

Renaud Garcia Fons performs a Tiny Desk Concert at the NPR Music offices.
Michael Katzif NPR

Originally published on Mon May 6, 2013 10:06 am

Double bassist Renaud Garcia-Fons was destined to create music that spans genres and borders: He was born in France to a family with roots in the Catalonia region of Spain, and he's fluent in French, Spanish and English. Classical, jazz and flamenco represent equal parts of his musical DNA, and his technique reflects the delicate arco stylings of concert halls, the deep groove of jazz and the raw vitality of flamenco.

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