Caifanes is a Spanish language rock music band that hails from Mexico City. They were established in 1987 and they were popular from the end of that decade until the early part of the next. There were five members of the group: Saul Hernandez, Sabe Romo. Diego Herrera, Alfonso Andre, and Alejandro Marcovich. The music style of the band is a unique blend of progressive rock, Latin music, and new wave.
In The Beginning
The name of the group comes from the Mexican word pachuco, which is “Cai fan.” This is a reference to those who wore zoot suits in the 1940s.
Before started Caifanes, Hernandez, Andre and Marcovich were in a band called as Insolitas Imágenes de Aurora. This group started when they were hired to act as a party band during a class for Marcovich’s brother.
While Marcovich and Hernandez were in other bands (most notably Insalatas), they did not hesitate to participate in this project. They recorded their very first demo in the spring of 1986. If you asked anyone in Mexico City at the time, the band was a force to be reckoned with.
That group broke up in 1986. New members were added, Romo and Herrera, and they were renamed Caifanes. Their very first performance was in April 1987. While they were a fairly new act, the building was filled up and the venue was forced to turn some people away. The band established themselves as a dark rock band.
This was starkly different from all of the typical rock tunes that were popular in the area at the time. Their music was considered groundbreaking since many people had never heard of anything quite like it. When the band first approached label execs at CBS, they were told that they were not desirable and their demo was rejected.
They received the break they were waiting for when they were asked to open for Miguel Mateos during a live show in Mexico City. While playing in the show, they caught the eye of Oscar Lopez, Mateos’ producer. He immediately whisked them into the studio so they could record a fresh demo. Around this time, they were signed to RCA-Ariola.
Their self-titled album was released in August 1988. When the EP was released, it sold 300,000 copies right away; a nod to how well known the band was by this time.
Soaring To The Top
At the end of 1988, the group did a cover of a song by Guillermo Rodriguez, La Negra Tomasa. The song was a hit and it made their popularity soar in international markets.
A couple of years later, Caifanes became known as one of the most popular rock bands in all of Mexico. By 1989, the group was prepared to release their second album. Three years later, another album, El Silencio, debuted. With all of the hits on the album and the unique blend of Mexican influence and solid rock, this it became of the most prolific albums of the genre.
As a result, the band started a tour that covered a number of cities. In 1992 they were scheduled to perform at the Hollywood Palladium and the show was totally sold out. They also had a show at Palacio de Los Deportes in 1993 and it was sold out as well.
In 1993, Herrera and Romo left the band to pursue other ventures. They were replaced by Yann Zaragoza and Federico Fong. Aquí No Es Así was one of the last songs released by the band and it ended up being one of their most noted hits.
1994 was one of the busiest years for the band. They were selling out venues all across America. It would nearly impossible to attend a music festival without them being present.
The End Of An Era
By 1995, the band decided it was time to call it quits. This was partly due to animosity between Marcovich and Hernandez. Their last performance was in August 1995 in San Luis Potosi. After the band was dismantled, Hernandez attempted to create a new band with the same name, but he lost in the legal battle that ensued. He decided to cut his losses and name his new band Jaguares.