Making a mark in the Tejano music scene, steadily moving up the ladder and loving every minute of it is the group, Bad Habitz, a group originating in Pueblo, Colorado, a town with a large population of people from New Mexico. The dominant genre of spanish music is what is referred to as “New Mexico” style. That being said, you can imagaine how challenging it is for a homegrown Tejano band to make it here. This challenge is met head on by the members of Bad Habitz.
Recently playing live at the Wild Wild West Fest in Pueblo, Colorado, the band wow’d the crowd with a mixture of Tejano, traditional New Mexico style and pop music. Playing long loved traditional music the crowd can sing along with and newer Tejano music that fills the dance floor the entire night, Bad Habitz knows how to keep their audience excited. Lead singers Christina Gallegos and Tomas Cordova combine to create a fresh aand unique sound. This is carried by the magic produced by guitarist Mike Martinez and Tomas Cordova. AJ Samora, Tony’s son, produces a sweet tone on the sax along with Carlos Crull. A staple of Tejano music is the accordion, played by a master artist in Sam Subia. There is something about a great Tejano band, the outdoors and cold beer that just makes for a fun time.
Formed in 2002 by Tony, Bad Habitz rapidly gained a following in Pueblo and the Southern Colorado area. Today they play venues not only in Colorado but nationally as well, with a popular destination being San Antonio Tx. It is in Texas where the Tejano Music Awards are and where Bad Habitz met Tejano great and founder of The Texas Maniacs, Max Baca. They were invited to play at one of the venues during the long three day awards festivities and did a cover of a song Max wrote entitled; “No Quierro que te Valles”. As it turned out, Max happened to be at the show and thoroughly enjoyed the Bad Habitz version of his song. “He approached us and said he liked the way we played. That’s how we ended up working with him”, stated Tony Samora.
Members of Bad Habitz are:
Mike Herrera-Bass and background vocals
Christina Gallegos- Trumpet and lead vocals
Tomas Cordova-guitar and lead vocals
AJ Samora-Conga alto sax and background vocals
Carlos Crull- Tenor and alto sax and background vocals
Mike Martinez-Guitar and background vocals
The group has played at a plethora of venues large, small and in between. Playing at Pueblo’s B-street Bash and Festival Fridays keeps the local fan base alive and well, while larger events create opportunities across the nation. They opened for Midnight Star to five thousand people and have played with Little Joe, Texas Maniacs and others. They have played the Tejano Showcase in Ft. Collins Colorado, the Tejano Music Awards venues and have been invited to play different venues across the United States.
Recently Bad Habitz was invited to play on the big stage at the Tejano Explosion in San Antonio. Due to circumstances and prior commitments, they had to decline the invitation. The group would have opened for Micheal Salgado and Chente Barrera. “We have a huge following in San Antonio”, declared lead vocalist Christina Gallegos. That declaration was a bit of an understatement; the San Antonio fan base is very big and extremely devoted to the band.
Giving back to the community is important to the band, often helping organizations with fundraising. Phyllis Samora, Promotions Manager (and Tony’s wife) not only manages promotions but is also the “go to” person when it comes to working out philanthropic projects. The band sponsors a racing team and is an annual participant in the Muscular Dystrophy Telethon.
When asked to share a story from one of their many road trips, both Tony and Christina chimed up with this one. I think it can one day be a song on their Cd’s.
“On the way to San Antonio in a 6-8 car convoy, we had to stop and rest for the night and were searching for a hotel. Our bassist Mike had a GPS and entered a search for cheap hotels in the area we were and came up with one not far away. We made our way to the hotel. It looked like a five star hotel! It looked great, even had a huge garden in an indoor courtyard.”
“We all got our room keys and were given this little metal box and were told, ‘Here’s your heater’, it was a cool little thing but we all wondered why we needed a heater. We were also given some batteries for our TV remote. So everyone went to their rooms and while Phyllis and I were struggling with our room key, everyone started to come out of their rooms. One room had bullet holes in the walls, one didn’t have a bed and one had drug paraphernalia on the table! We went and got our money back and went for looking for another hotel. We called it Mike’s Crack Hotel after that. This was in Lubbock Tx. To this day we don’t let Mike find the hotel for us”.
Bad Habitz is a fantastic Tejano band and they are making the next step the right way; a professionally developed CD with music written by Max Baca of the Texas Maniacs. This debut CD will be available soon and you can find it, and lots more at their website listed below.