Have you ever met a Grammy-nominated musician? Well, some youth from the Tierra Vida community had the great fortune to do just that this summer! On July 23rd, we hosted Joe Troop, who is part of a band called Che Apalache. This bluegrass band incorporates Latin American styles into their collection of music. They also address themes of social justice, including songs about immigration, agriculture, and the U.S. Postal Service.
Our youth found Joe very down to earth. He expressed interest in wanting to spend time with people in community who represent his music, and to share a bit of his story with them. Over the course of an afternoon, Joe talked about living in Central and South America and, in particular, his experiences with immigration, immigrant families, and his work around immigrant rights. Later that evening, the Tierra Vida residents and larger Tri-City community gathered to hear Joe’s music and learn how they could support the causes he promotes. Funds raised during the event were donated to Tri-Cities Immigrant Coalition.
After Joe’s visit, Jubilee’s managing director, Adan Suarez, reflected on the importance of such events. “We have young aspiring performers in our community we hope will find inspiration in Joe’s story,” he said. COVID has presented many challenges to all facets of our community. Joe’s visit represented not simply a quick reprieve from the isolation affecting us all, but also an opportunity for our youth to be exposed and reconnect with a wider world.