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Mon Laferte: Tiny Desk (Home) Concert

The Tiny Desk is working from home for the foreseeable future. Introducing NPR Music's Tiny Desk (home) concerts, bringing you performances from across the country and the world. It's the same spirit — stripped-down sets, an intimate setting — just a different space.

It's fair to say Mon Laferte is a musical chameleon. The Chilean vocalist's output of late has covered a vast swath of musical styles from Latin America, from big-band mambo to electronic dance club jams with a hint of reggaeton, and a few stops in between. The secret to the successes of these stylistic changes is the level of imagination and creativity she infuses in each turn.

So, it didn't surprise me that her contribution to our Tiny Desk (home) concert series is a visual treat as much as it is a musical one. The opening strains of "Tu Falta de Querer" introduce a cabaret-styled small orchestra and a character who appears to be left at the altar of a small intimate colonial church. She's in torch-singer mode throughout the four-song performance; take these lyrics from the first cut: "Ahora domiré / Muy profundamente para olvidar / Quisiera hasta la muerte, para no pensar / Me forro pa' quitarme esta amarguara" ("Now I'll sleep very deeply to forget I would like, until death, not to think. I erase you to take away this bitterness")

The 10-piece small orchestra is a combination of Mexican folkloric music and European chamber music, mixing the ukulele-like jarana, an oboe, a tuba, and the violins often used in mariachi. The arrangements are the perfect vehicle for Laferte's impassioned combination of blues and ranchera vocals.

There is much to appreciate in Laferte's celebration of the spiritual (the church setting) and the passions of everyday life (her torch singing). In fact, I can't think of many other vocalists who would be able to pull this off with as much grace, style and artistic vision as Mon Laferte does.


  • "Tu Falta de Querer"
  • "Por Qué Me Fui A Enamorar de Ti"
  • "Se Me Va A Quemar El Corazón"
  • "Placer Hollywood"

  • Mon Laferte: vocals
  • Sebastián Aracena: guitar, docerola
  • Tonatiuh Mejía: piano
  • Diana Gaby: tuba
  • Obed Calixto: guitar, docerola, jarana
  • Santiago Ortiz: percussion
  • Alonso Sánchez: flute
  • Ismael Fernandez: clarinet
  • Arielle Amezcua: oboe
  • Braulio Hernandez: bassoon
  • Obed Vazques: horns, spoons
  • Alex Soto: vocals Auro: vocals
  • Cancamusa: vocals
  • Carmen Ruíz: vocals
  • Daniel Quién: vocals
  • Ele Huex: vocals
  • Eli Moya: vocals
  • Grtsch: vocals
  • Irina Índigo: vocals
  • La Morra De La Vihuela: vocals
  • Lorena Gutiérrez: vocals
  • Mati Santos: vocals
  • Maxulyses: vocals
  • Mica Schlieper: vocals
  • Rulo: vocals
  • Vivir Quintana: vocals

  • Director and Editor: Camila Grandi
  • Production Manager: Fernanda Casillas
  • Producer: Florencia Quinteros
  • Production Assistants: Pamela Diaz, Jimena Garate
  • Assistant Director: David Castañón
  • Color: Sergio Bejarez
  • Director of Photography: Sebastián Cantillo
  • Camera 1 AC: Sofía Ramos
  • Camera 2 AC: Javier Silvestre González
  • Camera Op: Pablo Bernst
  • Photographer: Fija Mayra Ortiz
  • Gaffer: Gustavo Calderón Rodriguez
  • Steadicam: Enrique Moncada
  • Camera Manager: Guillermo Vidal
  • Digital Imaging Tech: Juan José Olivares
  • Art Direction: Josechu Garrido
  • Swings: Julio Santos, Eric Jasso
  • Musical Production and Direction: Manu Jalil
  • Mixing Engineer: Abelardo Rivera
  • Mastering Engineer: Chalo González
  • Musical Arrangement: Manú Jalil, Marco Uriel Jiménez
  • Recording Engineer: Manú Jalil, Juan José León
  • Location: Bajo La Montaña

  • Producer: Anamaria Sayre
  • Video Producer: Kara Frame
  • Audio Mastering: Andy Huether
  • Tiny Production Team: Bob Boilen, Bobby Carter, Maia Stern, Josh Rogosin, Joshua Bryant, Sofie Hernandez-Simeonidis
  • Executive Producer: Keith Jenkins
  • Senior VP, Programming: Anya Grundmann
  • Copyright 2022 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

    Felix Contreras is co-creator and host of Alt.Latino, NPR's pioneering radio show and podcast celebrating Latin music and culture since 2010.