In some ways, Andrés Salguero seemed destined to be a children’s music star. He learned how to play multiple instruments from a young age, and was only 8 years old when he recorded an album with El Ratoncito Marinero, a folklore music and dance group in his native Colombia.
But Andrés’ journey into the world of kids’ music was what he calls a mix of “interest, coincidence and faith.”
About eight years ago, Andrés was living in Kansas City, earning his doctorate in music at the University of Missouri-Kansas City and playing in an adult rock band, when the popular kids performer Dino O’Dell invited him to play saxophone at his shows. It was an eye-opener for Andrés, who had never considered playing music just for young audiences before.
“I realized I connected really, really well with children,” he says. “It was a life-changing opportunity. … I fell in love with the scene, with the goal of teaching through music.”
Andrés saw a need for bilingual art which serves a broader audience, so he became 123 Andrés and began touring and recording kids’ music in Spanish and English. He’s released two records, and the latest, “Arriba Abajo,” just won a Latin Grammy for Best Children’s Album. And on Saturday Feb. 4, 123 Andrés headlines a sold-out performance at WTMD’s kid-friendly Saturday Morning Tunes concert series.
“When you write a song for children and they like it, it becomes part of their life,” Andrés says. “They fall in love with it, and that’s all they want to listen to. They memorize the song, and sometimes they learn how to speak with your song. It becomes something bigger than just a song. It becomes part of these families’ lives.”
The first half of both Andrés’ albums are sung in Spanish, and the second half is the same songs in English. That way, it’s easy for families to expose their children to different languages, Andrés says.
“I’ve heard about families whose children are growing up bilingual, and they start asking, ‘OK, I want ‘La Semilla’ in Spanish, and then the next day saying, ‘Now I want to sing it in English,’” he says.
Andrés, who is now based in Virginia, is bringing his whole band for his show at WTMD, and plans on playing songs from “Arriba Abajo” and his first album, “¡Uno, Dos, Tres Andrés!” as well as a few cover songs.
“We’re really, really excited,” he says. “Looking forward to seeing all of my friends in Maryland, Baltimore and Towson!”
Tune into 123 Andrés’ concert at WTMD
Although 123 Andrés’ concert is SOLD OUT, you can tune in live on WTMD! The opener, Ruut, goes on at 9:30 AM and Andrés will be on from 10 AM – 11 AM on Saturday, February 4. Don’t miss the next concert in WTMD’s Saturday Morning Tunes series! Baby Beats with Max and Root perform on March 18th. Concerts are held in WTMD’s kid-friendly space. Doors open at 9 a.m. and the music runs from 9:30 a.m.-11 a.m. Each performance has an opening act as well as a headliner. Snacks (organic fig bars and fruit strips) as well as drinks (Horizon milk and Honest juice) are included for all kids. The series is sponsored by The Walters Art Museum, Garrison Forest School, Eddie’s of Roland Park, Race Pace Bicycles, All About Me Salon & Day Spa, and (cool) progeny. Kids under 2 are free!
(cool) progeny is thrilled to be a media partner for WTMD’s Saturday Morning Tunes. We believe in quality kids arts programming — and are excited about this new series for the Greater Baltimore community!