Greensboro-based record label, SideHustle Records, owned by producer Charlie Hunter, will release a boleros album.

The album will be a cover collection of Latin American songs performed by guitarist Aaron Weibe and vocalist Maritzaida Amador.

"For me boleros are … it just encompasses so much of the passion and just fiery personality of Latino culture," Amador says. "Somebody probably is heartbroken and they’re just expressing themselves and their passion through, not only their instruments but their lyrics. So boleros are about excess, there’s no in-between."

The couple landed in Greensboro after serving in the military. The musical duo who had been a part of the Air Force Band started playing boleros in their basement as a way for Amador to reconnect with her Puerto-Rican roots. 

About a year later, Weibe played one of the tracks for musician and producer Charlie Hunter who decided to help them produce an album composed of a medley of Latin-American bolero covers, some of which go all the way back to the 50s. 

Amador says her relationship with music suffered while she was in the Air Force, but boleros helped her find a way back. 

"Since I grew up with them and I was super connected with them since I was really little, when we started doing that, it sort of connected me with, you know, sort of shedding that rigidity of the military," Amador explains.

"Just letting go of that part and bringing in all that passion and culture, and kind of connecting myself with mi casa, my home, my family, my people, my heritage, my upbringing. So it really just helped me shed that and connect myself to that tiny little Mara that lives inside and it's just a little jíbara from Isabela."

Weibe says in an effort to make the album sound and feel like old boleros, it was recorded live on a stereo ribbon microphone. The album features two volumes, and the first volume is expected to be released this summer. 

This story was produced by a partnership between WFDD and La Noticia. 

Eileen Rodriguez is a reporter for both WFDD and La Noticia through Report for America, where she covers COVID-19's impact in the Latino Communities.

Periodista de La Noticia y 88.5 WFDD, Eileen Rodríguez reporta el impacto de COVID-19 en la comunidad Latina en Carolina del Norte. Rodríguez es miembro del cuerpo de periodistas de Report for America 2021-2022

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