Mexican son huasteco and son jarocho
Artemio Posadas, a native of San Luis Potosi, Mexico, has made it his mission to share the son Mexicano (son huasteco, son Jarocho, son arribeño, son tixleño, son mariachero) the music, dance and poetry of the different regions of Mexico, and the cultural aspects that contextualize these forms. His first exposure to the music is from his father who was an arribeño musician. Much exposure master musicians of the different styles from Mexico occurred during his studies at University of San Luis Potosi. Artemio later went on to study and work with musicians in their respective regions. He became skilled on many instruments, especially Huastecan violin and Jarocho harp. Artemio played for village ceremonies, festivals, and music and dance gatherings such as the huapangeados. He came to the San Francisco Bay Area in the mid 1970s and began teaching and coaching folklorico groups in San José, including Los Lupeños, Xochipilli, and his own musical ensemble Los Trovadores de la Costa. Currently he teaches over 250 students at the East Bay Center for the Performing Arts in Richmond, the Center for Training & Careers in San Jose, and in the public school system in the East Bay. Artemio is a master sonero, or player of traditional Mexican music, and his skills include music, dance, an in depth knowledge of lyrics and poetry and the skills of a repentista (spontaneous improvisation of verses) that pertain to the regional music of Veracruz (son jarcho) and the Huasteca region.
As a master artist in ACTA’s Apprenticeship Program in 2016, Artemio will establish a program for his apprentice Jorge Beltrán to further develop his ability as a repentista (verse improviser) within the son jarocho tradition.
Artemio was a master artist in ACTA’s Apprenticeship Program in 2005 with apprentice Dolores Garcia in son jarocho. One of his most advanced students, Dolores is proficient in the Huastecan violin, the jarana jarocho (a thin guitar), the Huapangera (a bass guitar), and the jarana huasteca (a small five-stringed guitar). She has also learned to sing, dance, play percussion instruments of the region and write decimas (poetry) for the sones (melodies rooted in the folk traditions of Mexico). After her intense period of study on the Veracruz harp with Artemio, she will be able to play all of the instruments of son jarocho and will begin to teach students of her own.
In 2000, Artemio was a master artist in the inaugural round of ACTA’s Apprenticeship Program with apprentice Nydia Algazzali in son huasteco. Of her teacher, Nydia says, “I have been inspired by Artemio and I have learned more from him that anyone. I feel that we work together well, and that together we can have a strong impact on the community and help them in their quest to know their culture, and express themselves.”