By BERENICE BAUTISTA
MEXICO CITY (AP) — Maná will play a concert residency next year at The Forum in Los Angeles, a city they consider their second home and in which they have broken audience records.
For the Mexican pop rock group, the real challenge will be to keep preforming unique shows and they promise that they will not stop scheduling dates if the public asks for more.
“We’re very excited, very happy to be back, it’s more than two years since we played our last show,” said drummer Alex Gonzalez via videocall from the band’s hometown of Guadalajara, México.
The residency announced on Monday will begin next year with the first dates scheduled for March 18 and 19 and April 22 and 23. Tickets will go on sale Friday via Ticketmaster.
“Los Angeles is like our second home after Guadalajara, and that’s basically where our career started when the whole ‘rock en español’ movement took off,” he said. “Our first show was at the Hollywood Palladium back in 1993 when we were touring with ‘¿Dónde Jugarán los Niños?’ and from there it exploded and took off to the rest of the country in the United States.”
Los Angeles’ love for the band, which has won four Grammys and seven Latin Grammys, hasn’t abated. In 2019 Maná broke a record at The Forum with seven concerts in a year, beating Kanye West and The Eagles.
“It’s going to be fun and exciting and emotional because we don’t know what the outcome is going to be. We’re not thinking about breaking records, we’re thinking about ‘let´s go and play and play as long as people want to see us there,’” said González.
The residence will have two monthly concerts, with more dates added to fit demand.
“We’re planning on a lot of different things, the setlist, we’re planning on inviting guests,” said González, who added that the production will be totally different from their latest Rayando el Sol Tour.
“We wanted to give the fans a really, really awesome experience. We want this to be something that they will remember, that they will cherish,” he said. “It’s something that we won’t do again. This is a once in a lifetime thing.”
Maná has closely watched the reemergence of concerts after the pandemic shutdown and preferred to wait until next year in search of more stability within and outside the industry.
“We wanted to wait and just let things settle in so people can recoup economically,” said González. “We’ve been always really, really worried about our fans and we want them always to be happy.”
After 35 years of releasing hits such as “Rayando el Sol,” “Oye Mi Amor,” “De Pies a Cabeza,” “Labios Compartidos,” “Bendita Tu Luz” and “Mi Verdad,” they have no plans to stop performing.
“I hope that Maná can be a band that can follow the footsteps of other famous and important bands like Aerosmith, that they’ve doing it all their life, or U2, or the Stones,” said González. “We’ve been practicing after a long time of not playing together and the incredible thing was that when we got into the rehearsal room the energy was just so amazing… It’s like you put the pause button, and then you took the pause button off and it was like nothing had happened.”
Being able to perform in a single city without having to go on an international tour will allow the band to continue working on new releases, including one of duets of their hits. Their next studio album will be released in 2023, and the band is eager to present new music after their “Cama Incendiada” of 2015.
On Thursday they will release a very Mexican version of their “Mariposa Traicionera” with Alejandro Fernández, which will be part of their duets album.
“It’s been fun to do this project,” said González. “It’s a way to do versions of songs that were hits, or people like, but with other artists that also like Maná.”
Speaking of other celebrities who like Maná, recently the band’s vocalist, Fher, had a special performance interpreting the classic Mexican regional music song “El Rey” during the fight between Saúl “Canelo” Álvarez and Caleb Plant that ended with the Mexican boxer becoming the undisputed super middleweight champion.
“I loved it,” said González about the presentation that he watched while celebrating his wife’s birthday. “I think it was a great fight and he is a person that is giving it all to put the name of Mexico very high.”
González said he was happy to support a friend who is also from Guadalajara: “As you know we played at his wedding. There’s a beautiful friendship of many years and it was a great treat that Fher was with Canelo supporting him.”
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