CALEXICO — ‘Thee Original Mad Lads’ band returned to their Calexico home turf Friday night for a special one-night reunion performance sponsored by the Calexico Chamber of Commerce.
Resembling a scene straight out of American Bandstand, the Calexico Community Center hall held a crowded dance floor filled with Calexico High School class members from the 1960s and ’70s grooving the night away as they enjoyed the concert.
Resurrecting moves from the Frug to the Hitch Hike, the music evoked the audience’s versions of ’60s era dance styles.
“We get a chance to listen to the music of our times that we used to hear when we had our futures ahead of us, and now here we are toward the end of our futures celebrating together tonight,” said Hildy Carrillo, executive director at Calexico Chamber of Commerce.
Beer, wine, and water refreshed the party goers while carne asada was provided by the Asadero Neighborhood Meat market.
‘Thee Mad Lads’, consisting of members Ernie, Robert, Sammy, Jimmy, Micky, Carlos, Harvey, and special guest vocalist Armando Villasenor, performed severak different genres of music, keeping the crowd on their feet with cover songs from Santana to The Midnighters and hashing in cumbias and quebraditas, as well.
“We grew up in a small little bubble here in Calexico and then came the Vietnam era and the ’70s and slowly our little bubble began to burst as everyone went their separate ways,” said Carrillo about the inspiration for the event. “It’s important that people from small communities who leave, comeback and reunite.”