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Taco Madness

Meet The Puerto Rican Dub Master Out to Roots-Rock TACO MADNESS This Saturday

The journey of L.A.-based Pachyman, born Pachy Garcia, starts in the Caribbean. Using the reggae en Español sound as a blueprint, he's created his own sound inspired by his punk and reggae upbringing.

12:42 PM PDT on May 4, 2023

TACO MADNESS, Presented by Bud Light, is L.A.'s first and biggest taco festival. All of L.A.'s heaviest hitting taquerías will be in one place for one day only! The 21 + event is happening from 6 to 11:59 PM on Saturday, May 6, at LA Plaza de Cultura y Artes in downtown Los Angeles. Ticket sales proceeds will support L.A. TACO's award-winning street-level journalism.

Get your ticket here

Puerto Rico-born-and-raised musician Pachyman will take to the stage for one of his high-energy, dub-riddled sets at L.A. TACO’s Taco Madness presented by Bud Light Chelada on Saturday, May 6, at LA Plaza de Cultura y Artes. The TACO newsroom is excited to catch him live at the city’s ultimate celebration of Los Angeles culture and tacos.

The journey of L.A.-based Pachyman, born Pachy Garcia, begins in the Caribbean. Pachy always had an interest in all things music and studied piano at The University of Puerto Rico in the capital of San Juan, where he got a taste of city life, becoming a fixture at various shows held in and around the city while absorbing different musical sounds en masse, including a lot of punk and reggae.

The thriving reggae scene in Puerto Rico attracted the attention of various touring reggae artists. It was rare in most cases since it’s not typically cost-effective for groups outside to play shows on the island. However, it wasn’t uncommon in the mid-2000s for legendary roots reggae and dub artists to play, specifically at the Tito Puente Amphitheatre in San Juan. Often the touring acts were backed by local Puerto Rico musicians. Groups such as Midnite, Israel Vibration, and Roots Radics graced the stage, where a young Pachy witnessed their irie greatness. 

Using the reggae en Español sound as a blueprint and influenced as early as 10th grade by the live album from the Puerto Rican reggae band Cultura Profética, Pachy began to dive deeper into an ocean of sounds. 

He eventually found his way to traditional genre forms like Bob Marley and the Wailers. Then, later on, swimming out further into the murky waters of the Dub with artists such as Augustus Pablo, King Tubby, and The Scientist. Coincidentally, this period also marked when the Puerto Rican reggae scene was blossoming into its own. “ I was listening to these records and being like, “Oh shit; there are bands that do that shit here on my island,” Pachy recalls.

Recalling the vibes at those shows served as a mind-altering experience for Pachy.  “It was such a moment in time.” Of course, weed was still very illegal at the time, but often, many would turn a blind eye creating a more freeing environment during those shows. 

Recalling the vibes at those shows serves as a mind-altering experience for Pachy. “It was such a moment in time.” Of course, weed was still very illegal then, but often, many would turn a blind eye, creating a more freeing environment during those shows. 

As Pachyman, he seeks to create a type of energy with live performances. Using the live format as an opportunity to dial in his craft beforehand to better engage with the crowd who comes to his shows. 

Pachy describes it as “creating a safe space for everyone, so everybody feels it's okay to dance, and it's okay to vibe, and it's okay to be happy. Even though it's a tough world that we're living in constantly, it's kind of like a form of escapism.”

To the multi-instrumentalist, the feeling of being a long way home is something that he has become accustomed to at his point. Talking with him, you get that being Boricua in Los Angeles creates a permanent sense of culture shock. 

“Going from a tropical island to the desert is a journey that not many Puerto Ricans make,” he explains to L.A. TACO. But it’s one we’re happy Pachyman has made himself, and we plan to make him feel the love on Saturday as he gets us moving at May 6th’s Taco Madness celebration. And we hope you’ll be there with us to celebrate, too.

Pachyman is proudly presented at TACO MADNESS by Northgate Gonzalez Market. Tickets are available here.

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