Arsenio Orteza

Arsenio is a music reviewer for WORLD Magazine and one of its original contributors from 1986. Arsenio resides in China. Follow him on Twitter @ArsenioOrteza.

Country-punk Christian

Music | Hard rockers seek to please their mother--and their Father
by Arsenio Orteza
Posted 11/16/96, 12:00 am

"That was a great piece," Jason Ringenberg told WORLD recently, in reference to the positive review of his band that ran in our April 22, 1995, issue. "You guys are The Way, right?" No, WORLD. The Way is published by a cult.

"WORLD. Cool. It was a wonderful piece to send to my mom."

Mr. Ringenberg laughs. Not long ago, after all, nothing would've seemed less in keeping with the wild, country-punk image of his band--Jason and the Scorchers--than for its leader to worry about pleasing his mother.

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Music: Good, good-time music

Music | Zydeco artists party, but always keep God much in mind
by Arsenio Orteza
Posted 10/19/96, 12:00 am

Against the background of the presidential race, the Simpson case, and the Kervorkian disgrace, a discussion of the best party music currently available might seem flippant. Yet when a person wants to celebrate or merely forget the turns our culture takes, and hopes to select a soundtrack appropriate to his mood, it's hard to beat the bright, uptempo, southwestern-Louisiana music known as zydeco.

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Better by a country mile

Music | Looking for a good pop tune?
by Arsenio Orteza
Posted 8/31/96, 12:00 am

Cultural conservatives who pursue happiness by searching for signs of intelligent life in the pop-music universe sometimes have to defend the pursuit against those who consider it a frivolity. If we're sharp, we remind our accusers that holding low culture in disdain is not so much "conservative" as elitist, and that just as one can enjoy the English and Scottish ballads collected by Francis J. Childs without indulging in intellectual slumming, so one can--in theory, at least--legitimately enjoy the best that pop music has to offer.

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