With years of experience of forming groundbreaking bands, locally centered music festivals, and now a radio show on Klangbox.fm under his belt, Ricardo Guerrero serves as a front runner in the Miami local Music scene. I met Ricardo myself last year at Death To The Sun 5, an all-day, 27-band loaded festival at the North Beach Bandshell, as his intern for the day. I knew he was just getting started on pushing Miami as a platform for local bands to play, succeed, and unite.
I deemed this year’s festival a spanking success. Alongside Diana Androsova, his co-host on-air at DTTS Radio, I served as his assistant, running around, getting bands set-up, experiencing what it takes to run a non-for-profit music festival, showcasing talent from the 305 and beyond. Leading up to the festival, Ricardo had only one focus: making Death To The Sun 6 even better. This interview took place during the honeymoon phase, a week after the crowds came, cheered, drank, and danced to this year’s amazing line-up.
Third Dream Media: How do you feel?
Ricardo Guerrero: “Great! I’m glad everything went exactly how I wanted it to go. No struggle, everyone was having fun. Crowd was steady throughout, every performance was great. The audience saw a good variety and got it. Can’t wait to do it again next year.”
Congrats! You made it through your 6th installment. What was your mission for this year?
“To fine-tune it. Last year was overwhelming; started too early, too many acts. I chose to reduce the lineup, and started later, so people could make it. Last year was hot, and this made it less physically enduring for people. Also, to refresh the lineup, I picked all bands that haven’t played the festival before. Made it easier to select the bands.
Anything different from last year?
RG: “ Planned it better, promoted better than last year. I did as much as I could.
From this Gofundme page, a lot were family, then friends, and then a lot of people I didn’t know. I wanted to make it a fun thing for people. I usually pay for the cost out-of-pocket for it to happen. This year with the donations, it made for a huge release. People appreciated for it to happen, so they made it happen. Very humbling.”
How did you curate this year’s line-up?
“They’re bands I’ve seen through-out the year. I frequent Churchill’s, I’ve been seeing a lot of punks. They’re so many bands out there in Miami that I can choose from. I happened to see these, and know these, but there are still a lot of bands out there to see. One guy has never played here before, so I wanted introduce him to the Miami world. Stylistically, they’re all pretty good friends of each other. They all have a quality that makes them unique.”
“I learned a lot last year, so I applied it this year. I handled problems that came up. I can’t say I was truly surprised in that sense, but seeing a lot of people there, that’s always a surprise to me. That’s the goal. You never know what’s going to happen.”
Why do you carry the responsibility of the local Miami Music scene on your shoulders?
“Because I have the ability, and capability, I have to do it, I should do it. Also, I really like the bands and music here, I really like pushing it. I feel like I’m doing one part of many. Part of what I wanna do is pass it on to others, and have other people feel the same way, and how they can do it, too. Make it more productive, have more people doing stuff, and teach people how to do it, keep the whole scene all together. If more people did it, it would be a more thriving place, and hopefully, more people will follow you. I just do what I wanna do. I enjoy the things that I choose to do. I have others jobs for money, I do this for fun. I like to bring bands down from other towns. It’s not that hard, I want to show anybody that wants to learn.”
How’s the band, Rick Guerre?
“I’m about to start on new stuff. Now that the festival is over, I can switch back to that. I can go back to the studio, record some demos. It’s active, it’s going, I’m juggling a lot, but it’s always my priority.”
What are your plans for the remainder of the year?
“Two events coming up this month with two bands from outta town – I’m trying to do a workshop, somewhere on helping out on how to book shows and how to do this kind of stuff, basically for young bands. That’s a goal for the year; and making music. My own stuff. I keep it chill.”
Can we be on the lookout for any more shenanigans?
“I plan stuff pretty fast. There’s gonna be stuff more consistently. I wanna be more active, I will be busy. Look out for anything for sure. I have ideas.”
Follow Ricardo on “Death To The Sun Radio” on Klangbox.fm, where he interviews cool bands, guest DJ’s, and curates playlists, Tuesdays at 11 P.M!