You know, of all the alcoholidays that grace us yearly, I would venture to guess that Cinco de Mayo is going to eclipse St. Patrickâ€™s Day in the American Southwest very, very soon. Itâ€™s one of those days that certainly has a lot of cultural significance to Mexicans and Mexican-Americans in the U.S., but for those who just love a good celebration, Cinco de Mayo is a great one.Â The liquor isnâ€™t limited to Tequila or Mexican imported beer, and the food is just sublime-or just meh depending where youâ€™re eating.
So to get you in the mood for a good party, Iâ€™ve assembled a little mix while you eat, drink and be merry.
“Mas Tequila,” Sammy Hagar and the Waboritas (download)
Might as well start with a gringo tune that celebrates multiculturalism as the act of switching from Scotchy Scotch to Tequila.Â I’ve actually had one of Sammy’s Waboritas at a party once, and I gotta say that if you want to get drunk fast, try this potent cocktail.
“Cinco de Mayo,” War (download)
One would think that with a tune like this, it would be one of the biggest favorites of this holiday.Â Nope. Warâ€™s â€œCinco de Mayoâ€ is pretty much a sleeper — even though the song itself is blend of that classic War sound with early â€˜80s synths of the Rick James variety.
“Maria,” Ricky Martin (download)
Say what you will of Ricky Martin, but this version of â€œMariaâ€ just sizzles like marinated beef fajitas on a hot skillet. Yeah, I know, what I just wrote sounds racist. What can I say, Iâ€™m not at my best when composing a simile.
“Jarabe Tapatio,” Mariachi Nuevo Jalisco (download)
So while trolling the Internets looking for â€œThe Mexican Hat Dance,â€ it was almost like finding a gem in my parentâ€™s record collection when I found this tune.Â The fact that the album was put out by Readerâ€™s Digest just screams â€œkitsch.â€ But you know what? This tune is one of the most popular on iTunes — well, when looking for “The Mexican Hat Dance.”
“La Cigarra,” Linda Ronstadt (download)
Thereâ€™s something about Linda Ronstadt belting these songs of her father that just caught fire with the record buying public (Yes kids, people actually used to buy music). Even though I donâ€™t speak Spanish, I canâ€™t help but crank this song and try to sing along in a kind of faux Spanish.
“Foo Foo,” Santana (download)
I love Carlos Santana for bringing a wonderful sense of whimsy to this song.Â Too often Santanaâ€™s music has a serious and transcendental quality to it. So refreshing to hear him just kind of cut loose and have a good old drunky time.
Happy Cinco de Mayo, everyone!