"Salt of the Earth," Mobetta Loretta's latest CD, would be best described as a modern folk album with a dash of southern rock. Yet it is much more than that because it is such an ambitious and creative work; it was recorded as a concept album with all the songs being inspired by the 1954 album also titled "Salt Of The Earth." In "Copper Pit Miner," Mobetta sings to us about being a copper miner in an upbeat, danceable folk-blues song that features great harmonica. "I Am the Salt of the Earth" is a song in which Mobetta opts to croon to us over a pleasant combination of acoustic guitar and string section. For "Local 809" she sings about antiquated union life over a more modern and toe-tapping blues beat. The songs on this album stand up on their own, as they are great contemporary expressions of a past generation; yet when one factors in that each song is part of an overall theme it really adds substance. So check out Mobetta Loretta's CD, "Salt of the Earth," if you want to hear great folksy blues stories of a day gone by.
-Sean B. and the RadioIndy.com Reviewer Team
Mobetta Loretta: Press
Inland artist Mobetta Loretta has released her new album, "Salt of the Earth." The eleven songs cull from blues, rock and folk influences to craft the collection. "Salt of the Earth" is a concept album based on the characters from the 1954 movie of the same name. Mobetta Loretta's uncle, Juan Chacon, starred in the film and it is notable for being blacklisted during the heyday of McCarthyism. Mobetta Loretta will perform at the Royal Falconer in Redlands on Tuesday. 8 p.m. Tuesday, the Royal Falconer, 106 Orange St., Redlands Visit www.mobettaloretta.com for more information
Audio File: Mobetta Loretta finds inspiration all in the family
by Vanessa Franko
When Mobetta Loretta started to work on her new album "Salt of the Earth," she found the story the rootsy, bluesy singer-songwriter wanted to tell in her own family's roots.
The album takes on the 1954 film "Salt of the Earth," which was based on the true life story of her great aunt and uncle. Her uncle, Juan Chacon, starred in the film, which takes on civil rights and women's rights. It was blacklisted during the McCarthy era afbeing dubbed as subversive.
"It always just mulled around in my head," said Loretta Chacon, a.k.a Mobetta Loretta.
However, it wasn't until the Redlands-based musician sat down to write the album when she thought it would be interesting to write songs through the character's voices.
The result has Chacon telling the story of a miner's strike and how the miners' wives replaced them on the picket line through the voices of her aunt and uncle.
"It's an inspiring story," Chacon said.
She even takes on the voice of the company in the song "Hey Main Street," a catchy, bouncy number that she envisioned as the fat cat of the company going down the street.
Chacon has also put together a band for the record, featuring Raul Salazar on drums, Kenn Lutz on bass, Professor Steve on harmonica and Guy James on guitar.
Guests on the album include Flamenco guitarist David Robinson and Lake Elsinore duo Sal and Isela. Sal and Isela will join Mobetta Loretta at The Vault in Redlands on Nov. 14 for the official CD release show.
"It's a folk album but it has all of these different influences tied in that tell the story of my family roots," she said.
Chacon is also working on a documentary about the real events around "Salt of the Earth," which she hopes to submit to independent film festivals and public television stations.
In the meantime, catch Mobetta Loretta at Coffee Depot and the Royal Falconer in Riverside on Sunday and then at her CD release show in Redlands on Nov. 14.
7 p.m. Sunday, Coffee Depot, 3405 Riverside Plaza Drive, Riverside, free, all ages.
9:30 p.m. Sunday, Royal Falconer, 4281 Main St., Riverside.
9:30 p.m. Nov. 14, The Vault Martini Bar, 20 E. Vine St., Redlands, 909-798-2399.
Visit www.mobettaloretta.com for more information and to hear some of the music.