Y La Bamba began in early 2008 as Luz Elena Mendoza began playing shows, and wanted a name other than her own to play under. She began writing and making home recordings of her songs one by one. During this process she began hosting an open mic regularly at a sake bar in Northeast Portland. This is where Y La Bamba began. She met Ben Meyercord, who Luz Elena describes as, “one of the many beautiful people I met who opened me up and saved my soul.” Meyercord and Mendoza began playing together and brought in Mike Kitson on drums and Eric Schrepel on accordion. Later, with the addition Scott Magee and Edward Cameron, Y La Bamba was complete.
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