QuatroSentido – often written as 4toSentido – is a huge outdoor restaurant and music venue built on the second floor of a mall in a town called Riberas de Pilar. It used to be a driving range, with people firing golf balls into the lake a couple of hundred yards away. It offers a stunning view of Lake Chapala – Mexico’s largest Lake – and the mountains and very dormant volcano on the other shore. It seats up to 125 with plenty of room for a large stage and even a dance floor.
Last Friday it hosted Fiesta Latina, a concert by the Los Amigos Big Band, an 18-piece mostly Mexican swing and jazz band. Accompanying the band was the Guadalajara-based singer Mariana Vigueras, and local actor/singer Douglas Voet, who also MC’d the concert.
The QuatroSentido concert was actually the overflow concert. The first two Festival Latina concerts, at another venue in the nearby town of Ajijic, were sold out almost a month in advance. The restaurant was the only venue available that could accommodate the 120+ waiting list and a stage for an 18-piece band. And of course, since it is Mexico, there has to be room to dance.
Music Director Michael Reason managed to pull it together. A stage large enough for the full band and the two singers, covered by a tent to protect it from the hot sun. Tables for 125 people, also shaded, a PA system, a reservation process, and two fabulous singers…all in a few days.
The concert was in the late afternoon, a scheduling necessity because of the venue’s dinner business. But that gave us the gift of seeing the sunset over the Lake while the band played and we sipped tequila and danced. Altogether a wonderful way to spend a Friday afternoon.
The two singers blended well with the Big Band, belting out favorites like “Girl From Ipanema”, “Tequila”, and “Besame Mucho”. Voet’s baritone filled the outdoor venue. An experienced professional singer and actor, he is a familiar face in Lakeside.
More interesting to me, as a music critic, is the rising talent Mariana Vigueras, a Guadalajara-based singer – and new mother – who has mastered the art of vocally switching genres from opera to pop while retaining all of the angelic beauty she is able to project regardless of the venue. A fixture in Guadalajara and Lakeside at concerts and major events with music, her clear, soaring voice and emotional delivery indicate a deeper talent.
In a short interview before the show Friday, Vigueras told me that as of now she has no recordings but is working with others to develop original music, which she would like to record. I can’t send you to a streaming platform to hear her music but her YouTube videos do a good job. I am going to follow her, introduce her to songwriters, and see how it goes. I love new talent.
Meanwhile I am looking forward to another Friday (or any) afternoon listening to music and watching the sunset at 4toSentido.
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