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INTERVIEW: tulengua

Hi guys, welcome to VENTS! How have you been?

Been great, making music, having fun. How are you?

Can you talk to us more about your latest single “Elevator”?

It’s a 70’s soul inspired, trappy hip hop song colored with our odd bilingual flavor. Sometimes we approach a song with a thematic direction in mind, but with this we just made the beat, added some horns, then started writing whatever our emotions felt like expressing. We all genuinely believe we have a three way telepathic connection so it just ended up coincidentally matching perfectly. Both Amari and I talk about the demons we carry and transforming them into something that can bring you closer to a place of power within yourself. This idea that we all carry good & bad and it’s up to us how we direct both energies.

Did any event in particular inspired you to write this song?

I was thinking about how boring elevator music is & thought it’d be funny to try and make “elevator trap”. I told jimmy about it and we came up with the beat. Then we all got together and let the ideas fly.

How was the filming process and experience behind the video?

It was the funnest video we’ve made. I had some loose ideas for the concept, but after linking up with Amari’s old friend Jean Gotay – a great filmmaker – the concept really solidified.  We co-directed it and had so much fun pretending to be benevolent thieves & riding around in a sexy lowrider. We made this with a super close to zero budget, though you wouldn’t be able to tell. Amazing how far resourcefulness can take you. We wanted to symbolically portray a dance between good and evil.

How was the recording and writing process?

It was pretty fast. We write & record everything at home, so we can do it whenever we want for as long as we want. I think all three of us inspire each other very much so the the creative process is really fun and easy & it kinda just flows out with little effort.

How do you go on balancing the bilingual aspect of the band?

We don’t really think about it when we’re writing. We just write and throw a bunch of ideas at a song and see what sticks. The bilingual thing is just a natural extension of who we are. It’s not something we force on a song – sometimes a song is more english, sometimes more spanish. Whenever we’re writing we follow the song’s inspiration and let it pull whatever it wants from us without trying to impose a formula, genre, or language on it. I think that’s part of the magic we feel in this band, there is no boundaries or limits. We’ve started experimenting with three-part beatles-esque harmonies, heavy metal beats, just whatever feels good.

What role does San Diego and Tijuana play in your music?

Being a band with members on both sides of the most crossed border in the world makes our dynamic a bit unique, to say the least. We have to constantly cross in both directions for shows, practice, etc. We are reminded daily of the forces that divide families and belittle people looking for a better life. We want our music to celebrate the binational community and show that beautiful things happen when people come together despite borders, language barriers, and racial differences.

Does the new single mean we can expect a new material – how’s that coming along?

Yeah! We’re releasing a new EP called “feelins” this Wednesday, October 10th. Some new videos are also on their way in the coming weeks.

Any plans to hit the road?

Hopefully soon. We want to make sure we do it right so we’re in no rush. Between Tijuana, San Diego, and LA we have plenty of new fans waiting to be discovered 😉

What else is happening next in tulengua’s world?

Almost done recording two new albums, writing tulengua movies, & being the world’s hardest working bilingual supergroup.

Watch here

About RJ Frometa

Head Honcho, Editor in Chief and writer here on VENTS. I don't like walking on the beach, play guitar, music geek, movie maniac and 6 hours sleeper.

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