Andres Gutierrez is a passionate musician and member of the Rondalla Presencia de Amor in Stockton.
“Music has always been an important part of my life; it has been a complement to fill the emptiness within that we feel sometimes.”
It was not until he was 16 years old that he discovered the power of music through a serenade, a music performance typically at night by a man to express his love to a woman.
“I realized that I loved music, but that women liked it even more.”
It was a serenade that also won the heart his wife, to whom he has been married for over 20 years.
Gutierrez has dedicated himself to maintaining the sparkle of the romantic music alive, and currently plays with the Rondalla Presencia de Amor.
A Rondalla consists of an average of 6 to 12 guitars and bass, usually with an all-male choir, but they have incorporated female voices as well, says Gutiérrez.
“We try to sing and play romantic music because it is very important nowadays—especially in these distant lands—because it is part our culture and we don`t want to let die.”
Currently, Gutiérrez plays along other 14 young musicians who have learned to appreciate music from the 70s and 80s.
Last year, Precencia de Amor hosted a “Lovers Night,” which attracted over 500 people. Gutiérrez hopes to have more events like this one in the near future.