Nashville is known as Music City for a number of reasons, but one genre that doesn’t usually come to mind for the Honky Tonk capital is Latin music. During the past year, Nashville SC has had the opportunity to connect with Raul Oyarce and a music series he started called “Intimo Nashville” that happens monthly (pre-quarantine) at the Analog Room, found inside one of our pub partners at the Hutton Hotel. Raul is not only giving the Latin community a place to celebrate their culture in downtown Nashville, but he is giving the platform to showcase Latin bands and musicians from all over Latin America.
This month’s DJ of the month is a band that we discovered through the “Intimo” Instagram page. Sweet Lizzy Project is a rock-n-roll band with Latin and Cuban flavors mixed into their sound. The band was formed seven years ago in Havana, Cuba. When they found themselves invited to write with Raul Malo of The Mavericks, they fell in love with what Nashville has to offer and chose to pursue their music careers here over other cities like Miami, LA or New York. Over the past year, they have been touring coast to coast with artists such as Jamey Johnson, Heart, Joan Jett, and Johnnyswim.
Having grown up in Latin America, soccer, or fútbol, definitely played a role in their lives. Sweet Lizzy Project’s keyboardist, Wilfredo Gatell, played soccer until he was 15 years old. It was then that his father gave him his first guitar and he realized he was much better at music than soccer. Even though he chose music as a career choice over soccer you can still find him playing pickup games and watching FC Barcelona along with Nashville SC.
The band as a whole is excited to have an MLS team in Nashville. Growing up in a country with such a strong soccer culture, they feel that it will help to build stronger bonds and a healthier, safer, and happier community. They think that Nashville SC and MLS provides the entertainment, joy, and feeling of inclusion and can help bring all communities of Nashville together.
You can catch Sweet Lizzy Project’s new music on the Nashville SC’s DJ of the Month playlist on Spotify. Their newest album which was recorded and released here in Nashville. “Technicolor” was released in February of 2020 and can be found on all streaming platforms.
Sweet Lizzy Project in a Snapshot
Rock n Roll with a Latin/Cuban flair
Favorite all-time Player: Leo Messi
Best soccer memory: One time when keyboardist Wilfredo Gatell, was playing soccer, he had the ball and he was running towards the other team’s goal. When he was really close, he fell and right when his team and the audience both thought he had lost the ball and missed the chance to win, he rolled over his head and went back to his original position carrying the ball. So he finished and scored! This was kind of his epic moment!
Most influential artist: Benny More, Foo Fighters, Of Monsters and Men, Nirvana, The Beatles
Current favorite artist: Bon Iver
Dream music collaboration: Bon Iver
Favorite Nashville pop venue: Bourbon Steet Blues and Boogie Bar and The Basement East
Social Handle: @sweetlizzyproject
New Music: Technicolor (Released February 2020)