It’s a tour of milestones and celebrations as Diego Kohl and El Mariachi Los Dorados swing through the B.C. carrying their traditional Mexican mariachi music with them.
Kohl will celebrate his birthday on tour with El Mariachi Los Dorados, a cultural cocktail with a mixture of Canadians, Mexicans and Mexicans of Chinese descent.
“People get a real kick out of that. To see that their music is getting played by other musicians who are great players and very studied,” Kohl said. “Our famous business motto is: Proudly Canadian, truly Mexican.”
Kohl’s birthday show will take place at the Centre Stage Theatre in Summerland on March 14.
“This is going to be a special occasion,” Kohl said. He added that his parents live in the Okanagan and will be joining him in the celebration.
“It will definitely involve some singing, tequila and food,” Kohl laughed.
Kohl is a singer and plays guitrrón, a Mexican bass instrument, in the band and this year marks the fifth annual tour through the B.C. for El Mariachi Los Dorados.
Ricardo Ochoa, star Mexican tenor and vihuela player, will be joining the group for this tour.
“Having Ricardo on this tour playing vihuela will add to the magic of the experience because he’s so great,” Kohl said.
The five-date tour through B.C. also celebrates the ten-year anniversary for the group as a whole.
The music is exactly what one would expect from a traditional Mexican band.
“The music that everybody knows because we’ve all been on that vacation to Mexico. Essentially it’s the musicians with the big hats,” Kohl said.
The “big hats” have become something of a competition between band members.
Some of the older members of the group try to keep their hats on the whole show, harkening back to the traditional, tough guy machismo personality associated with the music. The heat gets turned up when they see who can keep their hat on the longest.
“When we play, nine times out of 10 we keep the hats on the whole time. Even if it’s super hot. You’ll see the sweat coming down,” Kohl laughed.
Everyone in the group has a minimum of an undergraduate degree is some form of music, though the technicalities don’t get in the way of the fun.
“It’s contagious. The music is so happy. The trumpets, the violins, the guitars, the voices, it’s hard not to like,” Kohl said.
For more information on the music of El Mariachi Los Dorados or tour dates visit www.diegokohl.com